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jack of all trades, master of none, or well balanced martial artist
I feel that the term "Jack of all trades, master of none" is sort of a derogatory sounding expression. This saying is one that many traditional martial artists seem to like to throw at MMA practitioners implying that while they may be good fighters, they are not good martial artists simply because they lack mastery in one style. While it's a catchy sounding phrase, I feel that it's a bit misleading.
To look outside the realm of martial arts, "Jack of all trades master of none" might apply to academics as well. Which is better? To have an A+ in one subject but fail the rest or have C's in every subject. How valuable would you be to a company if you were known for being the best salesman in the company but showed up late everyday?
There is something to be said for being extremely skilled in one area but to what extent? MMA and the world have proved time and time again that being too one dimensional is a recipe for disaster. BJJ is a great fighting style, but what does one gain by being being good at only that aspect of fighting? I understand that some people do martial arts for fun and others practice only BJJ to specifically train for BJJ competition. That's fine if that is their goal, but what about those that aspire above all things to be a great fighter or martial artist? There are some out there that claim what they are doing is martial arts, but how can it truly be considered martial arts if they are only training one aspect of it?
The concept of balance doesn't simply apply to martial arts, but to every other facet of life. Balance to me is as universal as 2+2=4 just like the phrase "everything in moderation". Being too one dimensional means having a lack of this balance that I feel is a very backwards and outdated way of thinking.
If we are to move forwards and truly evolve the martial arts, we must look towards achieving this balance. Just something to think about. Your thoughts.