How has your training made you into the person you are today?
My first experience with FMAC was as a parent of a special needs child. I was so happy to find a studio where my son would be accepted and challenged, a place which reinforced the values we were teaching at home. Soon after, my daughter also enrolled as a student and eventually became a teacher here as well. She brought me to class during parent appreciation cycle, and from day one I was hooked. Twenty two years later I am still here, still enjoying the camaraderie with good people, benefitting from great exercise, and being challenged by the demands of learning and teaching. Through the years, the studio has been respite for me from the vicissitudes of life and an inspiration to strive to be the best person I can be. I thank FMAC every day for enriching my life so profoundly.
Which Black Belt Character helped you the most through your training?
Of the six Black Belt Characters, I would say that I have developed Perseverance the most. I have learned to achieve each long term goal via the attainment of a series of short term goals. I have learned that being a martial artist is a marathon, not a sprint, and a personal challenge, not a competition. I have learned that there will be periods of growth in skill and understanding and also many plateaus, which can be weathered with prioritizing, patience, and focus. And I have learned to find value and joy in small steps in understanding and skill, knowing that perseverance will bring greater progress.