8 Ways You Can Be a Good Teammate in Karate
Karate as a whole is known for being individually-focused. Each student has the ability to carve out their own path and set their own goals for success. Having said that, karate is also built on a strong foundation of community and peer connectedness. It’s easy to remain in your own head while in the dojo, but it’s also important to remain a good teammate to your peers. Here are some ways that you can do so:
- Be sure to accept any defeats with respect and dignity.
Defeat is one of the most valuable parts of karate and martial arts as a whole. It is not a reflection that you did not win, it’s a way to show where you may need to improve and push yourself further. Celebrate your teammates winnings as if they are your own and take it as an opportunity to see what they did to achieve it. Next time, and with practice, it could be you!
- In turn, be sure that if you win, you are doing so honorably and gracefully.
Celebrating your achievements and recognizing your efforts is exciting. However, it is also important to remember that your win also means your opponent’s loss. Try taking a moment to recognize them too, and how hard they worked. Even better, consider offering your assistance to help them with any hurtles they may be facing. This just may be the best way to be a good teammate in karate.
- Incorporate proper manners in all that you do.
It’s an age-old saying, but the sentiment is true, “manners go a long way.” Approaching every situation and conversation with a layer of manners establishes a mutual respect amongst your peers and yourself. This can be done easily by shaking hands, bowing, and using proper titles like sir or ma’am.
- Always play fairly and by the rules.
When you cheat, the only one that ends up losing is yourself. An equal and fair playing field is the only way to truly measure success in karate. By cheating, not only are you taking something that isn’t yours, you are creating an environment of distrust.
- Stand up for your other teammates.
Whether in the dojo or at a competition, it’s important to have your fellow classmates back. Much passion and emotion goes into the art of karate and sometimes, unwelcome words can be shared. When you can, be there to talk with your teammates in times of frustration and help them to step away from an uncomfortable situations that may arise.
- Know your role, and know your limits.
Working above and beyond towards your goals is always encouraged. However, when doing so, it’s important that you are still practicing within your means. Be sure that your actions are not overstepping others or insulting your senseis who are there to help you succeed in a timely way.
- Remember that you are all in the dojo for the same purpose.
You’re all in this together! Your classmates, senseis, or instructors are all in attendance because of their love for the art of karate. In times of discouragement or frustration, try reflecting on the connectedness of those around you. Together, you are improving upon your passion.
- Be openminded and hear what your teammates have to say.
“Those who can take advice are superior to those who can give it.” When things are going your way, it’s easy to discount someone else’s words of wisdom. It’s important to remember that there is no such thing as too much assistance. Skills are things that can be fine-tuned throughout your whole life. Open yourself up to listening, and listening fully, to the words that your peers want to share with you. They just may be a complete game-changer to you!
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Please note this article is based on our own thoughts and have not been formally approved by a healthcare or fitness professional.