TJ’s Tale: Excelling at Something Later in Life

The following article is the story of a student I had for many years.  To respect her privacy, I am going to refer to her as TJ in lieu of her real name.  The main reason I am sharing her story is that it is an inspirational one.  Many people over 40 years old will say they areContinue reading “TJ’s Tale: Excelling at Something Later in Life”

Not Everyone Will Get a Black Belt

My goal is black belt.  This is a black belt school.  Black belt excellence.  Minimum time required to earn a black belt.  These are all things that you will see posted on the wall of a studio or hear being discussed by students, instructors, and parents.  From day one, we are programmed to believe that earning a black belt isContinue reading “Not Everyone Will Get a Black Belt”

Thriving, Surviving, or Dying: Which One Is Your Martial Arts School?

March 10th, 2020.  That was the last day I taught a normal, restriction free martial arts class.  Over a year later, masks and socially distanced activities are still required in my area. We are quickly approaching a year and a half since the start of the COVID19 pandemic.  While it appears we are approaching the end here inContinue reading “Thriving, Surviving, or Dying: Which One Is Your Martial Arts School?”

Karate Customer Service

As a martial arts instructor, I was always taught to “give them what they need, not what they want.”  Think about it.  Karate is hard.  It is physically and mentally challenging.  We try to help students become more disciplined, focused, and respectful.  This is especially true for the kids we teach.  If we let them do what they want, I doubtContinue reading “Karate Customer Service”

Complaining, Critiquing, or Concerning?

We karate teachers are a unique breed.  We have a knowledge and skill set that many others don’t possess. A karate teacher is part martial artist, part teacher, part life coach, part psychologist, part physical therapist, part EMT, and part fitness coach.  That’s a lot of parts.  Most of us are experts in martial arts, proficient in teaching, andContinue reading “Complaining, Critiquing, or Concerning?”

Why Am I Not Testing?

Why am I not testing?  This is a question many martial arts instructors have heard all too often.  If you haven’t heard this question, you are either a really good instructor or a really bad one.  You would be a bad one because you just test all of your students all of the time, just for showing up.  YouContinue reading “Why Am I Not Testing?”

Worst. Tournament. Ever.

I got a bit of a late start in the karate competition game.  My first competition wasn’t until I was 18 years old and a 2nd degree black belt.  It was another year and half and 3rd degree on my black belt before I ever won anything.  However, once I started having some success, I wanted more.  Looking back, this comesContinue reading “Worst. Tournament. Ever.”

What is the Best Martial Art?

There are countless articles online and in magazines ranking martial art styles or claiming this style or that style is the best or most effective.  While I enthusiastically read all of these articles, I also cringe nearly every time.  The reason I cringe is because it is impossible to rank or claim which martial art is theContinue reading “What is the Best Martial Art?”

The Self-Defense Myth: A Little Does NOT Go a Long Way

I can defend myself because I took a self-defense class 5 years ago.  I can defend myself because I have a red belt in karate.  I feel confident I can defend myself because I watched a video on YouTube.  I will be fine if I get attacked because I put pepper spray in my bag. On their own,Continue reading “The Self-Defense Myth: A Little Does NOT Go a Long Way”

Being vs. Having

It has been a while since I had a true rant in one of my posts even though the title of my blog is “Master Elmore’s Martial Arts Rants”.  I will try not to rant too much while still providing some useful insight and information. In just about every karate school, there is a sign somewhereContinue reading “Being vs. Having”