Posted By Matthew

New E-Book Coming Soon!

Hey everyone, I have an announcement that I’m really pumped about. Recently I started working on my first e-book for the site.

The title is “The Student’s Guide to Surviving a Traditional Dojo” and here is a sneak peak at the cover:

Why Write This E-Book (What is it About)?

Over my years of teaching and being a student I have noticed commonalities regarding martial artists, the questions they ask, and the trials they face.

Similarly, I have had to tackle the hurdles and tribulations of my own long-term training. Benefiting from both an internal and external perspective, I’ve come to understand some of the ups-and-downs, causes-and-effects that can either prevent martial arts disaster or invite it.

Unfortunately, as a teacher, it can be difficult answering questions people are afraid to ask. Even worse, it’s hard to correct psychological pitfalls that people aren’t aware they are falling into. This book serves as a set of guideposts to avoid those traps and help practitioners survive to become true artists.

I’ve noticed that there are few simple, straight-forward guides for this sort of thing out there. You can go to Barnes and Noble and get 100 books about technique, but when it comes to  taking the leap into martial arts and making the most out of your day-to-day training you’d be hard pressed to find anything worthwhile.

Who is the Book Aimed At?

This book has a pretty broad scope both in age and experience level. Student’s of most traditional styles (karate, taekwondo, aikido, judo, jujitsu) will find the advice contained inside pertinent.

One demographic that will definitely benefit is beginning students. Whether trying to decide if they should start a martial art, or struggling to find a reason to continue, beginners will find a lot of things to quell their anxieties. Furthermore, there are specific sections in many of the chapters designed with intermediate and advanced students in mind (one of the things I definitely wanted to address is the black belt cliff – wherein students get to black belt and struggle to maintain motivation).

A Little More Info On the Chapters?

The chapters range from straight-up practical to philosophical. Some sections are basic and contain advice on subjects like how to wear your gi and obi properly (a surprisingly consistent cause of angst amongst new students). Other sections include ways to stay safe through stretching and listening to your body, which is often breezed over for the sake of more technique. Still other chapters include thoughts on how to obtain and maintain a beginner’s mindset so as to train (and keep training) for the right reasons.

For intermediate/advanced students I have analysis on topics like hierarchy, little-known pieces of dojo etiquette, how to properly handle rank and promotions, and figuring out when to stay and when to quit.

There are tough battles to face when trying to fit into the ‘exotic’ world of martial arts. For western thinkers, there can be definite pains in the process and I want to address them.

Page Sample:

I Want You to Be In It!

One goal of this book is to be useful for students of all styles. You should be able to easily send it to a nephew, niece, cousin, sibling, or anyone else you know starting in their art (or trying to make it to the next level).

In keeping with that all-encompassing nature, I would like thoughts from other martial artists. I intend to create a ‘words of wisdom’ section at the end of the book that will include valuable tidbits from practitioners like you. Here is the prompt I need you to answer:

What is your best piece of advice for long-term survival in the martial arts?

Write your answer in the comments section to this blog post. Your answer can be anywhere between one sentence and two paragraphs. Include your real name and style, and a link to your website (if you have one). Everyone selected for inclusion will get their name,style, and a hyperlink back to their website (remember it’s an e-book so this is a great way to increase exposure). You needn’t be a black belt to respond, but you should definitely have a few years of experience under your belt and be at least around the brown belt range.

I Want To Answer Your Questions!

If you could pick up a book that contained all the secrets to martial arts success, what would you want to see in it? What questions have been nagging at you about your training that you feel too silly to ask your instructor?

This is the perfect venue to get those questions answered, and, in the process, help everyone else who probably has the same question!

Include in the comments section below anything you’ve been wondering about when it comes to the martial arts – be it how rank works, why dojo are setup in a certain way, why we bow all the time, etc etc.

It’s Going To Be Free.

The goal of this book is not for profit. It is instead a tool for education that can improve the lives of traditional martial artists. In a society where commercial dojo are springing up more and more and traditional dojo are becoming less and less understood, this book can help guide students onto a path of long term character development and success.

This book will be shareable, sendable, and giftable. You will be free to print it out for students and I will provide an easy-access hyperlink to the finished copy for download.

I’ll be keeping you updated on my progress (I want to finish asap), and I hope to see your thoughts in the comments below!