Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Black Belt Excellence

Found this quote on friend's FaceBook wall today and had to share it:

"Black Belt Excellence comes through consistent training. When things are darkest, toughest, and all seems lost...TRAIN and this too shall does get better.. in fact it is better than you think already...Have an attitude of gratitude! If you think you are done then you are!! Get to class!!!"
- Tom Arcuri

Thanks to a massive sinus headache (courtesy of the lovely humidity), I won't make it to class tonight, but you better believe that once my meds kick in, I'm hitting the heavy bag in the garage and working some kata. Thanks for the gentle nudge, Tom :-)


  1. Thanks for sharing the quote!

    I hope your sinus headache feels better today. Yesterday was terrible sinus weather in the Northeast. My sinuses are making my teeth ache. :(

  2. Great quote! Thanks for sharing it.

  3. through consistent training.

    Can you describe what you believe is a definition for consistent training?

    things are darkest, toughest, and all seems lost...TRAIN and this too shall pass

    Can you describe what you mean by things and how they become dark, tough, and cause a mental drop to even consider all seems lost?

    I like quotes. I really do. I plan on posting a list of them I had on my old web site long ago so I do like quotes. This one seems a bit vague and leaves a lot open to perceptions of reality by individuals who may or may not know what "black belt excellence" is.

    Last, what would you define as "black belt excellence?" I am curious to hear/read responses to this set of questions.

  4. I didn't write/say the quote so I can only tell you what it means to me. Whether or not it is what the author intended I can't be totally sure, but "consistent training" to me means training on a regular, whether in a dojo or the privacy of your basement or - heck - even your shower (can't tell you how many times I've done Sanchin in the shower :-). "Regular" doesn't necessarily mean every day, but as part of a routine - which could be every Thursday, or alternate Saturdays. I think "consistent" varies from person to person, but I think it's fair to say it doesn't mean disappearing from the mat for months at a time unless injury or other life situations make training impossible.

    "Things" are those life situations I mentioned earlier. For example, my training partner's wife was in a very bad car accident a few months back. Although she wasn't seriously hurt, she was banged up pretty badly. Because they have two children under age 10 (including a very busy two -year-old), he was away from training for over a month because life demanded his attention. But he did kata and practiced blocks/strikes and kicks in his kitchen while his wife was on the mend.

    For me, "things" are sometimes karate related. When I was dealing with changing schools last year, sometimes it was difficult to even go to class. When my old instructor all but flipped me the bird, it was kind of painful to train both with and away from him, but I did anyway. Felt better about things when I was done and eventually, all the turmoil did pass...

    Black belt excellence is all about being the best martial artist you can be while remembering you still are a work in progress; knowing that perfection is something that can't truly be reached, but can be strived for everyday in everything we do - both on the mat and off, IMHO.