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"The Empty Hand"

603 Karate's blog

  • Writer's picture603karate

Know What You Don't Know

When you are a world-famous Karate superstar like me, it’s easy for your ego to get in the way.

After spending so much time each day signing autographs and turning down interview requests, I often forget that I still have a lot to learn.

I need to remember to maintain a “Beginner’s Mind.”

A Beginner’s Mind, or “Shoshin” for you martial arts nerds, is the best way I have found to keep making progress in my art.

It’s easy to recognize learning when you start something new.  Everything is a fresh experience.  The excitement of gaining new skills and knowledge can feel intoxicating.  

Let's use Karate as our example, but it could be anything.  

As time goes on and your experience grows, things become less new.  It can feel less exciting.  Certain lessons will feel repetitive.  You’ll be much better at some drills than new students.  You might start to think, “Is this all there is to learn?”  

That is when a lot of people will fall out of their training.

And that is the moment a Beginner’s Mind can serve you well.  

Yes, you are becoming familiar with the lessons.  But that doesn’t show how much you know.  It only shows how much you have learned up to that point.

That is the time when someone who studies with a Beginner’s Mind will challenge themselves.  

They will seek out more advanced students to train with.  They will evaluate what they have learned and figure out how to improve it.  They will take what they know to the next level.

I bought a piece of training equipment that I’ve been having a ton of fun with.

It is so fun because I am not very good at it.

It’s called the Jukestir (, and I look like a fool when I try to hit it.

When you hit the Jukestir, it moves in very unpredictable ways.  It challenges my footwork, head movement, and reaction time.  I can work both my offense and defense on the Jukestir, often with little success.

But I am getting better at it.  And I love those moments of success that I am experiencing the more I use it.  

I feel like a beginner again, making strides doing the same things I have been doing for decades.  This weird-looking piece of equipment made familiar moves become a challenge all over again.

Perhaps I became a little complacent at the basics.  But exploring new things helped put me back in my place.  

I feel like I’m starting over again.


If you are interested in purchasing a Jukestir (, use promo code “603karate” at checkout and save 10% on your purchase!

If you would like to try out the Jukestir first, let me know and we can set up a time for you to try it at the dojo.

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