Kicking the digital world

By HM staff

When people hear the words “martial arts”, they sometimes think of action movies. Bill Thompson offers a different view. Bill is the president of Strive Martial Arts, where he explains that martial arts is more than kicking and punching. It is about a way of life built around All-American words like confidence, focus, self discipline, persistence and achievement. Together, these concepts build a foundation of character designed to promote self-reliance, courage, loyalty, respect and personal satisfaction. The use of the word “Strive” in Strive Martial Arts is no accident. Bill and his fellow instructors work tirelessly to support their students as they strive to reach their own personal goals. Whether young or old, each student is there for his or her own reasons. Some are looking to build confidence through their ability to defend themselves. Others want to improve their physical fitness. Of course, some are there because it was their parent’s idea. Parents see martial arts as a way to help their child grow and establish good mental and physical habits that will serve them in all aspects of their life, both now and in the future. The funny thing is that kids brought in by their mother or father soon find out there is more in this adventure for them; much more than their parents ever thought. Strive staff members take a special interest in every student and they work to understand the goal and motivation of each individual who steps into the studio. They emphasize this is not a “one size fits all” experience. The staff uses their unique ability to zero in on a student’s interests, especially young students. This helps them grow, week by week, and enjoy an ongoing sense of achievement.

This is important.

Every new goal achieved builds confidence that helps the student tackle the next challenging goal. As Bill Thompson says, “If it doesn’t challenge you, it won’t change you.” For all students, the dream of attaining a black belt is always there in the distance, but as Thompson points out, a dream without a goal is just a dream. The Strive program is designed to help students pursue their dreams, one step at a time, one goal at a time. At Strive, we say there is only one direction to go, and that is always forward. That is why classes move forward in a seven-week session, ending with testing. When requirements are met, students are awarded the next level belt. At every step, students take pride in attaining their newest belt. Of course. As Thompson reminds everyone, while the black belt may be the ultimate destination, it is the journey that counts. It is the journey that builds the kind of character that most people agree makes the difference in the world. Thompson points out kids are growing up in the digital world, spending more time on computers and video games, and their brains are becoming wired for distraction, multitasking and short attention spans. All of this can get in the way of success, both in school and life. Strive Martial Arts is helping students make a difference. Learning to kick and punch is only the beginning, but it is a first step in being able to kick the digital habit, put it in its proper place and focus on what’s important in life.

*Photo provided by Strive