by Sensei Jim Horne
March, 1998

Karate has given me confidence in myself, good discipline, healthy lifestyle, good morals, new friends. What I like most about karate is that I will never be able to learn all there is to learn in a lifetime. I think that is a good thing because it will challenge me to better myself always now that karate is a part of my life. The self-defence part of karate is very important too because it prepares me for when the unexpected happens one day.

The essence of karate is in the kata. I also think kata, like a mirror image, reflects the character of the karateka who does the kata. When a kata is performed by a high ranking black belt, I think you get to see how realistic and elegant katas really can be.

For me, karate is great because it has given me the rare opportunity of doing seminars with top notch martial artists form all over. Karate is never dull because you're always learning something new and exciting. Karate is a highly effective means of unarmed self-defence. Tournaments give me improved confidence in my own ability as a marital artist, also keep me more geared to the art that I study. From when I started karate to now, there have been changes in myself, all of them I feel were for the better. I am glad that I joined karate.

Karate is being aware of what's around yourself at all times so that you will never put yourself in a bad place where you might have to fight. Karateka learn kata as a means to self-perfection. There are limits to how far a fighter can go, but there are no limits to how far a good karateka can go. Karate starts and ends with courtesy and respect for each other at all times inside and outside of the dojo. Karate means always to go forward in life, never backwards because karateka are always pushing themselves to be the best that they can be. I myself believe that this is a good thing because it reflects on their own character as marital artists.

Karate is what you make of it.

Karate is taught in a school called a dojo.

Karate, when directly translated means empty hand.

Karate is just one type of martial arts; there are many other types out there.

Karate brings your mind, body and spirit together as one.

The roots of what we now know as karate, have been around for more than one thousand years.

Karate first originated many years ago by a Zen Buddhist Monk Bodhirma.

Karate was introduced to the Japanese in the early 1920's.

Karate is meant for self-defence only and must never be used violently.

Karate is a serious art of serious study.

Karate will improve your fighting skills.

A karateka should never quit his or her training because the more you train the better you become.

Karate gives you the motivation to excel at whatever you are doing.

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