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Excerpts from the written portions of the Kids Kung Fu Black Sash I, II and III Tests:
“Since my years in Kung Fu, I’ve learned to trust and believe in myself and never give up.
It was hard to become a black sash, but I trusted in myself and hope to be a black sash soon.”
“I never gave up on Kung Fu, and I never stopped when it got hard. I know how to defend myself from danger, I met new friends, I have awesome coaches and I have fun!”
“One of the most important aspects of Chinese Martial Arts is passing on the skills and knowledge from generation to generation. For the past 11 years I’ve had the honor and privilege of being instructed and mentored by my dedicated instructors, especially Si Nai. I hope to show the students that it is worth every bit of effort, every push up and move we do to accomplish such an important goal of earning your black sash.”
“I think martial arts has helped me to achieve physical fitness, learn self defense and build self confidence. It has also helped me make friends, connect with my culture and helped me with coordination. Martial arts helps society in ways you wouldn’t think of. It helps people build discipline, which is what this world needs more of.
“I have learned that I am strong and athletic. If I work hard I can achieve anything. I have learned to respect me and other people and martial arts. I have learned to be confident.”
“What I can bring to the future of martial arts is teaching. I want to carry through what I’ve learned to many people. I started when I was two in Tiny Tigers. I was excited to even learn to do a kick and punch correctly. When I was about seven, I tested for my very own sash in the class I’m in now. I was so happy I got a sash for the first time. And throughout the years I learned kicks and different moves that I could only dream about when I got my first sash.”
“Kung Fu changes lives by building confidence, learning to be respectful and give you lots of skills and knowledge.”
“Kung Fu gives you discipline, self control and self confidence.”
“I have learned that I an strong and athletic. I can reach goals if I work hard. I have learned how to defend myself. I have learned to respect myself and others. I have made friends. I love it. It has given me confidence.”
“At first, I really began to think that kung fu was all about the physical side. But as time passed and as I’m still growing older, I’ve come to understand Kung Fu is a beautiful art that people study. Kung Fu has taught me how to defend myself. It has taught me discipline, respect, integrity and humility. One of my wishes in the future is to open a Kung Fu school of my own. The idea of leading people through all the experiences and fun I’ve had so far with Kung Fu is overwhelming.”
“Of all my years at the studio I’ve learned. I’ve learned skills that have improved my knowledge and help me achieve my goals. I’ve learned many things about myself. Knowing these things give me strength to accomplish things.
The life lessons I’ve learned at the studio will help me succeed throughout my life. For that I thank the studio, the instructors and my family here for providing me with strength and confidence in myself.
I hope to accomplish one of my greatest goals today and that is all thanks to this wonderful studio and instructors. As we say here at the studio, black sash isn’t the end. It is only the beginning.”
“In all of the years of training at the studio I have learned many things about myself including that I am a very hard worker that is why I am reaching my goal for black sash. A very wise woman (Si Nai Gretchen Ho) said that the heard (of cattle) faced the wind and cold and lived, while that heard that had their backs to the wind died off in numbers. That story taught me to face my fears and not be afraid. Another thing that I learned about myself is that I don’t give up when things are hard. I keep on working because that is the only way to reach a goal. I know this because the same wise woman talked about it in our huddles.”
“In all my years of Kung Fu training, what I have learned about myself is that I have gained confidence in myself. With that confidence I have learned that I can protect and defend myself, my loved ones and my friends.
I have learned that if I set my mind to something, that I can accomplish my goal. I have learned that consistent practice will lead to improvement in speed, agility, and knowledge and helps me accomplish more of my goals.
I have made several good friends in Kung Fu. I have learned how to be a better person and friend. I have learned to respect myself and others.
I have enjoyed teaching the lower sashes and that has given me pride in my ability to teach others what I have learned.
I have learned a lot about weapons. I have learned they are not toys and should be respected. My favorite weapon is the double hood swords.”
“Martial Arts is essential in society today not only because of the skills acquired, but also because of the knowledge gained regarding techniques you can use to avoid dangerous situations. Working and learning in class gives me experience just as well as any experience I may receive outside of class. The techniques I learn in class allow me to protect and defend myself. Martial Arts is important to me because I feel it prepares me for any possible future outcomes in society, while it also generates an awareness of your surroundings, which can save your life.”
“I have learned to be confident. Being confident is to believe in yourself because you can do anything you put your mind to.”
“I may have learned self defense, but even though self defense is important… I have learned way more about myself. I have learned that if I put my mind to something I will achieve it. I’ve learned honesty, integrity, courage, humility, and so much more. I have learned to set goals, work hard, and do my best.”
Black Sash I Student, test essay…truly moving and remarkable:_________________________________________
“Lao Tau said “Knowing others is wisdom, knowing yourself is enlightenment.” In my years training in Kung Fu, I have learned so much about myself. I enriched relationships with people. Me and my friends at the studio have grown a lot closer than regular friends. I earned the deepest level of self-confidence. Lao Tzu said it all. I have been enlightened.
When I started Kung Fu, I was shorter than Si Nai but, now I have grown taller. At first I was barely able to do a correct push-up and I definitely could not do a kip-up but guess what, now I can! Here is home, here is where my family is, I have grown up here.
After I had gotten my white-yellow sash I quit, for quite some time too. I was very young and all that mattered to me then was being the farthest in the line-up. Then, my brother joined the studio that I had almost forgotten about and I cam to one of his classes and I remembered Si Nai saying I had gotten so big. I realized in that moment that I missed this place. It was my empty spot.
As Gena and Bruce Lee always say, I have learned to keep my cup empty. Thank you to all of my instructors for their support, I wouldn’t have achieved this level of expertise or enlightenment without the. The small things have made a big difference. When the instructors and strict, or tell us to keep our thumbs bent, hands up, and yell louder, I now understand it wasn’t to be mean it was meant to help us, to help me get to be the best I can be. Jessica, Jen, Jason, Gena, and of course Si Nai helped me achieve the biggest accomplishment of my life.”