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      Most days, I wake up with the sun. I’ve really enjoyed getting to the Dojo early and doing the thing I love with the people I love. Sure, the training may be hard but if it wasn’t hard, it would be boring and not very fun. I really enjoy pushing myself beyond my limits. I love doing this because it makes me grow so much stronger. If you don’t struggle, things become too easy. Easy is very boring. Hard things are so much more fun, because you can learn so much more from hard things than easy things.  Through Boot Camp, I’ve learned that you can’t be a good person and live a happy, fun life without gratitude. If you don’t have gratitude, you might think that the world is a terrible place, and you might not see the good in life. With gratitude, then you can see all the good things and you can be a “glass half full” kind of person which makes life feel better and more fun.



I am a lot stronger than I would have been if I hadn’t gone to the Dojo and taken my private class 8 years ago. I am not only stronger physically, I am also stronger mentally. Some people think karate is all about physical fitness but it’s really about your mental focus too. This has helped me at school because I can now easily zoom in and focus on one particular thing. This allows me to be a better student. Focus also helps me a lot in karate. We used to have the “6 inch rule” but now we have light contact. If you don’t use focus to control the power and targeting of your strike, you might hurt your partner.


            Achieving my Black Belt means that I am at a high point of skill but still with so much to learn. I started my journey 8 years ago and have always wanted to be a black belt. It signifies that someone’s skills are high enough to earn the highest rank. If someone has a black belt, you know that they are skilled physically and mentally and deserve respect. Black belts can understand one another because they’ve gone through the same stages. It will feel so good to be a black belt.


            I try to live my life by the Student Creed as much as I can. I know that it won’t always be perfect but I still always try my best. The first stanza, “I will grow everyday in mind, body and spirit” is quite important to me because to become a black belt, this is what you have to do by practicing your karate everyday, staying mentally focused, and having a positive attitude filled with gratitude.


             Black belts also have responsibilities. They have to push themselves beyond their limits and show their skills. They have to show respect to everyone, and try to live by the Student Creed. I can’t wait for the next challenge that life throws at me and I know that by being a black belt, I will be that much more prepared for what’s to come… both inside and outside of the Dojo!

My Black Belt Journey
By Pax Lindenmayer

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