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Ke?poFist
2/01/2006 1:09am,
I had a fun day today...here's a conversation I had to deal with from memory in regards to a bitchy parent of a child student who jumped into a conversation about a recent belt test that she wasn't involved in to complain. Sensei Joe is a 4th dan who doesn't teach directly at our school but runs tests alongside either myself or another senior black belt.

Me: So how did your test go?

Green Belt Teen Student: Ugh...it was going easy until some of the brown belts forgot their lower rank forms. Sensei Joe seemed pretty pissed so he had us all run wind sprints from one end of the dojo to the other with 25 squat thrusts at one end, and 50 pushups at the other.

Me: Oh yeah? Hah! You didn't forget any of your material did you?

GBTS: No way! But he made us all do the workout anyway. It was good though, I needed that right before 10 minutes of sparring, heh.

Me: Well be gla.....

Mother of other child: *cuts in* That's ridiculous!

Me: I'm sorry?

MOOC: That's ridiculous! This Joe guy just told them all to do 50 pushups like that!? What if they couldn't do that many?? Then what???

Me: No, no, no...don't worry. First of all none of our students above green belt are incapable of doing 50 pushups....

MOOC: What do you mean!? You mean they can't get to green belt until they can do alot of pushups? What does that prove!? What does that have to do with Karate? What if my daughter can't do that many?

Me: Mrs. MOOC, it's our job here to make sure they can attain those goals.

MOOC: But what if she can't!?? Then she just never tests? What if a student has a disability?

Me: Please relax, I never said that it was a belt requirement to do 50 pushups, it's just a rule of thumb that we go by, and we push every student to do the best that they can. Usually by that rank they can do far more than 50 pushups. But if they can't for a legitimate reason, no we are not going to penalize them for it. It's our job to make sure every student is working up to their full potential, and becomming the best that they can be so to speak.

MOOC: Well how do you explain that Joe guys actions in there! He doesn't know those kids! He just made them run and do pushups! What if one of them couldn't do it? Do you know how easily children can be hurt or traumatized by a situation like that!?

Me: Mrs MOOC, I assure you that will never happen. Sensei Joe knew exactly what everyone on that test was capable of because Nidan Chris was running it with him and he let him know everything about those testing. It's our job as instructors to get to know each student inside and out so we can find the best way to relate to and teach them. That's why one of us is always on the test with Sensei Joe. We know every students strengths and weaknesses, and where one student may recieve encouragement when having trouble another may very well need to be scolded and punished for failure to prod them forward. The goal is always the same, but the methods vary.

MOOC: Well good....Just so you know I work with autistic kids....and they all just try so hard, and the thought that they could be told that they're failures just because they don't size up to their peers....it's just not fair. I mean what if one of them wanted to do Karate? Should they be denied a black belt just because of a condition they have no control over?

Me: *nods in acknowledgement and quickly darts out the door before vomitting in response*

CanucKyokushin
2/01/2006 1:19am,
Wouldn't be easier in life if you could just tell the truth that not everyone deserves a blackbelt.Even an autistic child.

Cassius
2/01/2006 1:19am,
The day I hear **** like that from a student's mom and have to be political in my response to her is the day I take my belt off for good. Then again, I'm only a blue belt, so I won't "get" to officially teach class for a good long while . . . here's hoping . . .

JKDChick
2/01/2006 1:23am,
God, I hate the culture of "praise people for trying!". **** that. Praise accomplishment; critisize failure. Such is how we learn. Oh, but wait! Someone's feelings might get hurt! Can't have that!

Cassius
2/01/2006 1:26am,
Wouldn't be easier in life if you could just tell the truth that not everyone deserves a blackbelt.Even an autistic child.I think my response would be to tell her that giving rank to someone that does not deserve it is a slap in the face to every serious martial artist in the world. How is spitting in the face of thousands of people worth making one kid with a self esteem problem happy?

If you're not good enough, you don't get rank. Sorry.

I'm not saying you have to be a professional fighter to attain rank, but . . . c'mon.

Ke?poFist
2/01/2006 1:27am,
The day I hear **** like that from a student's mom and have to be political in my response to her is the day I take my belt off for good. Then again, I'm only a blue belt, so I won't "get" to officially teach class for a good long while . . . here's hoping . . .

Every day you teach a little piece of you dies inside :new_gmorn

danno
2/01/2006 1:30am,
it's like saying that everyone who competes in the olympics deserves a gold medal for trying.

CanucKyokushin
2/01/2006 1:31am,
I think my response would be to tell her that giving rank to someone that does not deserve it is a slap in the face to every serious martial artist in the world. How is spitting in the face of thousands of people worth making one kid with a self esteem problem happy?

If you're not good enough, you don't get rank. Sorry.

I'm not saying you have to be a professional fighter to attain rank, but . . . c'mon.
Granted i'm very well aware that I am no where near the ability of say someone who weights 200lbs.So in that case I'm most likely ,when i pass for my BB , going to spar other people at around my weight range.FAIR IS FAIR.Perhaps a few people heavier than me.But the fact is I will be sparring these people.I'm not getting a free ride .

Ke?poFist
2/01/2006 1:32am,
The problem is after further analysis (I couldn't sleep not knowing what the hell makes her mind tick) I've concluded that these types of "lets all feel good about ourselves" people don't view martial arts, belts, or anything related in the same context most serious practicioners do. She doesn't see the belt as an accomplishment of time, effort, experience, or talent. She sees it as a reward or tool that she can use to make her child (or any other child) feel better about him or herself. It's purpose is nothing more than a reaffirmation of their own worth.

I believe somehow these people see this as something necessary to combat the competitive nature of our cut-throat capitalistic culture. But then again perhaps I'm giving them too much credit for believing that they might be capable of thinking that deeply.

Teryan
2/01/2006 1:37am,
Wouldn't be easier in life if you could just tell the truth that not everyone deserves a blackbelt. Even an autistic child.

I disagree with that. It is my belief that a black belt represents alot of hard work and dedication beacuse some one achieves a big challenge. I belive that alot of cancer patients should be awared one for going thru the stuff that they do. I belive that some retarted kids should get a balck belt for doing a jump spinning round house. It might be harder for them to get out of bed than it is for you to pass guard on a brown belt. It's fine by me to give an autistic child a black belt as long as they understand it reconises their hard work and dedication not that they can beat any one up.

No not every one who wares a black belt can kick some ass. That does not mean that a Judo black belt worked any harder for their belt than a TKD one. Not all MA's are about kicking ass.... like sport TKD.

Stick
2/01/2006 1:42am,
You should've made her do 50 pushups.

I'm so glad I don't have to deal with anyone's parents- teaching at a college FTW!

CanucKyokushin
2/01/2006 1:42am,
I disagree with that. It is my belief that a black belt represents alot of hard work and dedication beacuse some one achieves a big challenge. I belive that alot of cancer patients should be awared one for going thru the stuff that they do. I belive that some retarted kids should get a balck belt for doing a jump spinning round house. It might be harder for them to get out of bed than it is for you to pass guard on a brown belt. It's fine by me to give an autistic child a black belt as long as they understand it reconises their hard work and dedication not that they can beat any one up.

No not every one who wares a black belt can kick some ass. That does not mean that a Judo black belt worked any harder for their belt than a TKD one. Not all MA's are about kicking ass.... like sport TKD.
Spoken like a through product of a McDojo.Listen I'm a short guy.I wouldn't expect a big guy to not knock me out because of the sole reason that I'm short.Point set. Mother [email protected]!

Cassius
2/01/2006 1:42am,
I disagree with that. It is my belief that a black belt represents alot of hard work and dedication beacuse some one achieves a big challenge. I belive that alot of cancer patients should be awared one for going thru the stuff that they do. I belive that some retarted kids should get a balck belt for doing a jump spinning round house. It might be harder for them to get out of bed than it is for you to pass guard on a brown belt. It's fine by me to give an autistic child a black belt as long as they understand it reconises their hard work and dedication not that they can beat any one up.

No not every one who wares a black belt can kick some ass. That does not mean that a Judo black belt worked any harder for their belt than a TKD one. Not all MA's are about kicking ass.... like sport TKD.And I have to disagree with you.

If you're going to have rank, it should MEAN something. I'm not saying you have to be a bad ass fighter, but let it represent technical skill, teaching ability, advancement of the art, SOMETHING. "A for effort" does not cut it in my book. The first thing a martial artist needs to lose is that goddamn sense of entitlement so many of us seem to be born with. You want to reward someone for being a hard worker? Give them student of the month or something.

Ke?poFist
2/01/2006 1:44am,
I disagree with that. It is my belief that a black belt represents alot of hard work and dedication beacuse some one achieves a big challenge. I belive that alot of cancer patients should be awared one for going thru the stuff that they do. I belive that some retarted kids should get a balck belt for doing a jump spinning round house. It might be harder for them to get out of bed than it is for you to pass guard on a brown belt. It's fine by me to give an autistic child a black belt as long as they understand it reconises their hard work and dedication not that they can beat any one up.

No not every one who wares a black belt can kick some ass. That does not mean that a Judo black belt worked any harder for their belt than a TKD one. Not all MA's are about kicking ass.... like sport TKD.

Well then you get into the very definition of the black belt your school awards. Most people in the western world view a black belt with some revered quality of fighting prowess. I see MA as a sport, hobby, and a lifestyle depending how seriously you take it. And since it is such, it isn't for everyone. Quite simply not everyone is capable of learning a martial art, or martial sciences.

If you want to have a school that awards belts like that, then I actually applaud you for your efforts, but keep in mind any skilled fighters, or people with potential to become skilled fighters will most likely not spend much time with you, for the worth of their belt in regards to fighting prowess is denigrated by the existence of other black belts than can barely walk in a straight line.

Teryan
2/01/2006 1:45am,
I'm not saying that you should reward hard work... I am saying that hard work comes from more than being a fighter. I tottaly disagree with the woman, she was wrong. I'm just saying their is more out their than fighting that should be reconised.


Spoken like a through product of a McDojo.Listen I'm a short guy.I wouldn't expect a big guy to not knock me out because of the sole reason that I'm short.Point set. Mother [email protected]!

I have no idea what you were trying to say, other than your short.

Cassius
2/01/2006 1:50am,
Most people in the western world view a black belt with some revered quality of fighting prowess. I see MA as a sport, hobby, and a lifestyle depending how seriously you take it. And since it is such, it isn't for everyone. Quite simply not everyone is capable of learning a martial art, or martial sciences.AND BINGO WAS HIS NAME-O.

I'm sorry if your dream was to become the next Jigoro Kano/Rickson Gracie/Fedor/Bruce Lee, I really am. But life isn't fair, and we need to stop pretending like it always has to be. Find something else that makes you happy.