New Student, New Spark

I’ve been teaching karate now for the past 25 years, with no more than a few weeks break in that time.  I took over the club, along with a colleague back in 1989, I was a mere 15 years old and my club mate just 17, he was the main instructor and I was the assistant, but that still meant that I had more teaching duties than training opportunities.   By the mid nineties, I had taken over the majority of the teaching, before eventually taking over the club on my own almost 10 years ago.

I’ve had good times and bad during those years, it’s not been plain sailing, it’s been hard work and a lot of time, indeed a lot of my life has been given over to it, at one point I was teaching everyday of the week, at the club, at schools and at a University, but on average it’s been five times a week that I’ve been out of the house teaching classes.

Many times, I considered why do I do it, many times I questioned do I want to keep doing it.  I spent many years doubting myself and my credibility, I was such a young instructor, I never saw myself as being taken seriously or whether I would get the respect I deserved, but over the years my reputation in competition and the results of my students, proved what I was about and I got beyond that doubt.

There have been times when I’ve been worn out and just needed a spark to reignite the fire inside, usually something happens to breathe new life into the club and into me.  For a long while karate was the only place I felt the good side of me came out, when I went through my real dark years of drinking and hardly working, karate was the only thing I had my head on straight for and only time I would never drink was before teaching, it was simply the only place I felt normal and of some worth, somewhere I still had something to give.

Over the last year I have scaled down my involvement, I have an able assistant who is more than capable of handling classes without me.  Back in November I took a step back when I was struggling, Steve took over teaching for a few months and gave me some time to get my head straight.  Since the New Year I have been back teaching, but I’ve not had a real fire for it for some time, I enjoy it still, but I can’t say I’ve been giving my all, it needed a spark to reignite the fire.

So last night, when I got home from work, out of the blue my daughter came to me and asked if she could come to karate!  She did a few class a few years ago, but only because her friend tried it, but since then she’s not really been interested.  My son trained for a few years, but after a while decided he didn’t want to do it any more, I was disappointed, but I would never force him to do it if he didn’t want to.

So Eve shocked me when she asked out the blue and tonight she was so excited.  It was her first class this evening, we walked there together (well I walked, she jogged along side), she joined in the class, the class was split between me and Steve, she was in Steve’s class, but she was okay with that.  When we walked home, I got a full run down of her class, what she did, what she got wrong and also everyone else got wrong too.

And when we got home she was quick to show me what she had learnt, she’s ready for the next class on Saturday now.

Maybe, this is the spark I need, I don’t want to go back to the five times a week I was doing before, I don’t need to, but I do want to get back a little of the old hunger, I guess retiring from competition last year hasn’t helped, but just maybe, I’ve got a second wind.

Set a fire down in my soul
That I can’t contain and I can’t control
I want more of You God, I want more of You God.

There’s no place I’d rather be
There’s no place I’d rather be
There’s no place I’d rather be
Than here in your love, here in your love

Set a fire down in my soul
That I can’t contain and I can’t control
I want more of You God, I want more of You God.

Love of God overflow
Permeate all my soul

3 thoughts on “New Student, New Spark

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