You may wonder what courtesy has to do with martial arts. Maybe you are wondering what it does in a Karate For Kids Class. Like respect, courtesy is a very important quality that martial artists have to develop. At ATA Martial Arts and Black Belt Academy, courtesy does not just mean being polite. It goes beyond the basic politeness that we extend to a stranger. Respect is a vital element of martial arts and that extends into our communities, and courtesy is the quality that helps you give and earn respect in the DoJo, and in the outside life. Respect and courtesy are in fact like codes that students of ATA Martial Arts adhere to. For this reason, ATA Martial Arts is so popular among parents, students and instructors.
Treat Others How You Would Like to Be Treated
Treat your neighbor like you want to be treated – we hear this very often. Martial arts help you practice this statement in your life. Far eastern cultures, where most martial art styles have originated, lay a lot of emphasis on courtesy. In those cultures, a person should develop courteous habits for acceptance and proper functioning in the society. In fact, courtesy is so important that even the languages of the Far East are molded to have specific words that help you express courtesy when you speak, depending on who you speak to. The ATA Martial Arts Founder and Eternal Grand Master, Grand Master Haeng Ung Lee taught courtesy and respect for juniors and seniors in the ATA organization. As a Martial Arts practitioner, a Taekwondo Grand Master and as a family man, Grand Master taught the world the courtesy and respect that is needed in todays world.
What is Courtesy?
If you ask someone what courtesy means to them, they would say polite behavior, which is accepted by the society. At ATA Martial Arts, courtesy is a code that tells you exactly how to interact with the other person, be it your teacher, parent, co-worker, fellow student, a student in a higher rank, or your opponent in a tournament.
In martial arts, courtesy and respect go hand in hand. By bowing to the other students, you are expressing your respect and being courteous to them, but not in any way submitting. When you practice martial arts, you must always remember the rule of courtesy. This means, you must be aware of and ensure the physical and mental well-being of your fellow students and also the overall energy of the class. Your aim should be to avoid harm to your partner, and to create a positive atmosphere in the classroom.
“Before Amber and Adrian started Taekwondo ATA Karate Classes, they used to be really shy, and whenever they had to do a school project and talk in front of the class, you could barely hear them. Both of them were really nervous. But, since they started with the ATA [Karate] and the Leadership classes both can talk in front of the class and it has helped their grades.”
-Mark Kashay (father of Adrian and Amber)
Importance of Courtesy at ATA Martial Arts
Courtesy is what prevents you from hurting others while at school, at work or with your training partner during practice. It helps you get along with the others, and enables you to listen to and learn from what your instructor has to say. Courtesy teaches you to cooperate with others, so you can implement what you have learnt to improve the quality of your life.
Courtesy also means that you give the respect your seniors deserve, if you wish to be able to earn the respect of your subordinates later. Being courteous also means being sincere and modest in your actions. Courtesy allows mutual respect between peers, be it on the mat, or in your life outside it. ATA Martial Arts and ATA Black Belt Academies set the mood and tone of courtesy and respect in all of their licensed schools that are independently owned and operated.
Courtesy as a Life Skill
ATA Martial Arts teaches you to give respect and have courtesy not just towards your teachers or fellow students, but everybody you meet and interact with in your day to day life. In a traditional martial arts school such as the ATA, courtesy is not an option. It is the norm. If you want to learn the skills, you should also learn to be courteous. And when you train in an environment that demands courtesy and mutual respect, you are bound to develop those qualities strongly and practice them even in your daily life.
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