The martial arts provide a powerful instrument for us to become better connected with our bodies and through that connection with our minds. This may appear like a simple concept but it is one that takes some time and effort to adopt into daily training and daily life.
However solid progress is normally made in the first few months of training.
During Karate training, by constantly focussing on your body positioning, body tension and breathing the Karate-ka (karate student) becomes more connected with the physical self. This can translate into daily life where you will begin to notice your movements, breathes, stresses and ideally begin to flow more in your movements. We notice this often in new students to the Auckland Shotokan Karate dojo in Kohimarama as they are at first quite disconnected from their own bodies as they begin to practice karate techniques. Technique by technique, stance by stance the karate student becomes more aware of their physical and mental state and more aware of their own position as well as their relative position to their surroundings.
In particular this can help karate kids with attention challenges as the first step in overcoming a lack of attention is to realise that you are in fact not paying attention and to then gently begin to focus instead of trying to force attention which we know only worsens the matter in the case of ADHD and other related modern conditions.
For adults practicing Karate in our Auckland dojo they can expect to feel calmer, lighter and more awake during their daily lives as body position, posture, breathing and tensions are something they begin to automatically observe and manage.
The concept of Karate-do is to find or build “the way” through the practice of Karate. It is seen as a higher goal than simply learning self-defence (which is one thing that happens along the way). “The way” is something each individual must define but certainly includes building a better self, physically, mentally and spiritually. What better way to balance the busy life in Auckland for adults and kids alike than to steadily develop ‘your way” and improve your life through Shotokan karate.
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