Goju-Shorei Systems

Martial Arts for the 21st Century

The one thing that bothers me more than anything else in a class is when students are talking among themselves and not listening to the instructor.

When Grand Master Archie taught me (about the same time dirt was being made) there was never any talking between students when he was speaking. It never occurred to me that anyone would do that.

In 1974 or ’75 I took a week-long seminar taught by a high ranking karateka from Japan. He was making a point about punching, or something, - which had to be translated – when I heard somebody talking in the back row. Oishi stopped speaking in mid-sentence, glared to the back of the room and ran towards the offending student yelling “Naaaaaaaa!!” the whole way. When he reached the now wide-eyed student, he slapped him in the face hard, grabbed him by the collar, drug him to the side of the room, sat him down and hollered at him some more in Japanese. The student sat there the rest of the class with a very red slap mark highlighting his mistake. I have wanted to emulate Sensei Oishi on many occasions.

When a student is talking to another student, while instruction in being given, several things are happening, and they are all bad.

1). Apparently the student thinks that what they have to say is more important than what the instructor is saying.

2). By talking to another student, two students did not hear what the instructor had to say.

3). The instructor was trying to make a point. And now at least two students did not hear what that point was.

4). The point may have been a safety issue. Now at least two students could get hurt or, worse yet, hurt someone else.

5). The fact that this behavior is so rude, and shows so much disrespect should say it all.

6). Apparently the student thinks that what they have to say is more important than what the teacher is saying. I am not repeating this point by mistake.

If you are learning from a Goju-Shorei instructor, open your ears and close your mouth. If you don’t want to learn from a Goju-Shorei instructor leave, but keep quite when doing so.

When you come to a Goju-Shorei dojo leave all of your problems outside. They will be waiting for you when you leave. Concentrate on what is being taught, not on your travails. Concentrate on learning. Concentrate on respect. Address all Goju-Shorei senior belts as sir or ma’am. Whatever relationship you have with the instructor takes second place to his/her position as your instructor during class. They may be mom, husband or boyfriend on the outside, but they are your instructor inside the dojo.

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Comment by Bobby M. Starks on August 31, 2010 at 6:20pm
Being a Search and Rescue swimmer for the Navy, students not paying attention are Humiliated by us instructors and bring them the worst day of physical training they could ever imagine. Most drop out of class from shear pain. The point is that what we teach can mean the difference between staying alive or being killed or even putting someone else’s life in danger. For the black belts that teach in the martial art world, training isn’t just a hobby, it’s a life style.
Comment by Larry Kooyman on August 30, 2010 at 6:13pm
Again, this is one of my pet peeves as well. To take it a step further is when students are stuck in a previous teaching and will not allow for the view point of others. "There are many ways to whistle" and the same goes with movement in the martial arts. "My Instructor showed me this way" is not an acceptable nor respectful answer and has no place in a class. All knowledge is an expansion of understanding. It reminds me of a joke Master Wiz quotes: How many Martial Artists does it take to change a light bulb?
Comment by Kevin Stewart on August 30, 2010 at 3:00pm
It's amazing to me that this subject need be addressed... but I know it does. I hope it gets the attention where it's needed. Thank you!
Comment by Matt Carter on August 30, 2010 at 2:11pm
I couldn't agree more!

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