Considering that this is the last day of the year–and many of you guys will be making your New Year’s Resolutions–here’s a NYR you might want to add… Especially if you’re a martial artist:
This year, I will train for dominance.
I am floored that more martial artists do not aspire for this. They train, they study, they investigate and style-hop. They buy books, invest in DVDs, cruise Youtube clips, attend seminars, and rehearse scenarios and new skills in dojos, garages, and backyards all over the world. When they get old–if they are still active in the arts–they will want to be respected and revered, and called “MASTER So-n-So” rather than simple “Sifu/Sensei/Guro So-n-So”. They daydream about being unbeatable, until one day they are no longer able to realistically hope to kick someone’s ass ala Bruce Lee/Jet Li style, and settle for telling and teaching newer generations how to do it. What is missing from this equation is the statement “I am the best.” For some reason, martial artists fear making this claim. They even have cliches and cool sayings to discourage other martial artists from aspiring to be the best (or just say they are the best):
- Eternal student (and sayings alluding that one is a lifelong student)
- Don’t brag
- Just a martial artist searching for my own truth
- I just train for the love of the art
- Martial arts is not about fighting (lol)
- This is just MY truth in the arts
- Fighting really isn’t real, STREET fighting
- There is always someone better, if you don’t act tough you will never meet him
But here’s one: If you can’t be the best at it, why do it at all? Fighting is a different type of activity. When you train in the martial arts, the object is to outdo the next guy, period. It is not a casual activity. Even the masters who created the styles you are learning, did so because he wanted to find a better way to do it than the way HE learned. You got the “new and improved” style, yet you settle for being untested and average. Don’t lie to yourself. You know darn well that you and ever other martial artist out there wants to be the best. You probably don’t know where to start, don’t think you are the best, or you think you’re the best but afraid to say it out loud because, well–you know deep down that you aren’t.
Let’s make this upcoming year the year you take the first steps towards actually accomplishing this goal. Keep coming to this blog, and I will show you how.
First, I cannot emphasize enough that you must get a copy of my book. Mustafa Gatdula’s How to Build a Dominant Fighter in 12 Months. It’s an easy read, it’s small, and is the blue print to becoming the best, or at least among the best.
The first thing you must do is actually WANT to be the best. You must be willing to do all it takes to becoming the best. You must change your lifestyle to simply, the life of a martial artist. If you want to be the best fighter, and you know a fight can come at any time (remember, we are preparing for true combat, not just the ring)–you must be prepared at all times for that fight. You must live like a street fighter. Believe it or not, true streetfighters don’t drink or use drugs. Why? Because trouble happens when people drink, and if I encounter trouble in a place where everyone is drunk–including ME–I won’t be at my best will I? If I hang out where trouble tends to be, I increase the chances that I will end up fighting so the least I can do is keep myself ready and 100%. Not to mention, the long term damage that drinking alcohol inflicts on the body. Why do you think singers take care of their voice and health, boxers tape their hands, cops clean their guns? If you say you want to be a dominant fighter, a champion, or the best at what you do–not living a life that facilitates that happening is just plain old stupid. This is why you don’t find Muslims hanging out at Honeybaked Ham, why Christians generally don’t do Halloween, why that future CEO who is still in college isn’t at the frat party–he’s in his room studying… It’s because what you do now determines your future. It’s that simple. Make it a goal, and do all you can to ensuring that goal is met.
You cannot go into the gym and go halfway on anything. You must work hard and you must give 100%. That means when you do your bagwork, you fire on all pistons. Speed, power, focus and explosiveness. When you stretch, you STRETCH. As a point fighter, I noticed that all the best fighters have full flexibility. It’s a by-product of training for dominance. You don’t point fight if you just fight “for love of the art”. You compete because you want to beat the next guy, you want to be faster and more accurate than than him, and likewise when you stretch you don’t halfass on that either. So when you stretch with intent, you will be completely flexible. Not every fighter will be able to pop out a full split, but I tell you what: Almost all the champions can.
If you have not subscribed to this blog, make sure you follow us. I will return to this subject throughout the year, and hopefully guide you–my reader–to that place where your martial arts training will pay off. It is the place that very few martial artist will ever see: Where you walk into the room and you know without a doubt that you can lick any man in the place.
For you FMA types, it is a part of your style’s DNA. The Filipino tradition is one of survival, and average fighters cannot survive. You must beat the next guy to survive. You must have more courage, be stronger, faster, more aggressive, smarter, have better timing, be more mobile, and have more pain tolerance than the enemy. Stop being a pussy and live up to your art’s core philosophy.
Make sure you stop by Amazon and pick up a copy of my book, and come back to hear me out. Thanks for visiting my blog.