There are many forms of martial arts, some relatively new, and others that have been practised for decades. The longer established arts have often been passed down from teacher to student for several lifetimes. Student learns from teacher then student becomes teacher and passes on training knowledge to other students some of who again become teachers and so it continues.
So, what are the criteria that define a martial art.
- Grades are earned not purchased, you cannot pay a large sum of money and are then given a black belt (it does happen, but not in ‘martial art’ schools)
- Grading test criteria must be met. You must reach a certain standard to be awarded a higher grade.
- Everybody starts at the bottom and works their way up.
- Respect in the training hall is earned not demanded. (whether student or instructor)
Some of the characteristics of a well-trained martial artist…
- Physical power and precision
- Ability to think clearly under stressful conditions
- Indomitable Spirit
- Strong self-discipline
- Clarity of focus
Apart from being essential characteristics for martial artists, these are great life skills but they will only be obtainable by using the right process of training – NOT by merely doing the physical act of training.