Martial Arts training involve many different stages of ones BODY, MIND, and SPIRIT. When we first start training it is only the physical aspects and improvement of the techniques is the main priority. We are more concern about how to kick higher and harder, how many katas that we know, and of course how fast we can progress in our ranking. During this stage, the students only concern with themselves and their abilities and this is where they get most of their inspiration. This is also a very critical time of commitment and the result is higher rate of drop out.
Eventually the students will get past the self centered/improvement stage and have realized that the friendships, organization, and the environment in which they train in will have a longer effect in their improvement and motivation. This must be shown by the instructors through nurturing mind set and not ordering and directing. Otherwise the students may see but NEVER feel the closeness of the Cuong Nhu family that is provided. The mental focus with the physical strength will enable the students to push through many obstacles and they can finally see their “initial” goal of becoming a black belt.
When the students can feel the support from the fellow students and instructors they will start to develop a bond. It is during this stage that they will learn to accept success as well as failure and hardship in learning and time commitment to perfect their techniques. The DEPTH of their emotion and the appreciation of the style are essential for students to evolve from self serve to serving others. The instructors must expose the students to other Cuong Nhu schools/instructors/seminars/TC to captivate their mind what an extended family is. This is for the students to understand the ROOTS of Cuong Nhu.
“The student of Cuong Nhu must strive to improve him/herself in order to serve the people”. The improvement must include Body, Mind, and Spirit. As the students going through the ranks, they learn and recognize all of the aspect of martial arts. When they becoming a black belt, many will drop off the physical training and only rely on their ability to motivate others. The sad part of it all is they have forgotten how to continue to motivate themselves and their abilities and eventually end up quitting. Many will use an excuse of “burned out”. Burned out is merely a symptom of “no progress”. At this level, one must refresh his/her commitment and must recognize that “Black Belt is just a Beginning”. It is one’s ability to SELF motivates and works on the physical (OPEN ARMS), mental (OPEN EYES), emotional (OPEN HEARTS) aspects to enhance the growth of the style.
GM Quynh Ngo