Getting into martial arts has been on my bucket list for many years. Whilst I have dappled in a few over the years— I never managed to find one that I stuck to for more than a few months at a time.
The years went by, and life happened. By the time I was in my late 30s, I figured my time had passed.
Then in the midst of the pandemic, inspiration found me. I decided to stop dithering and just take the plunge.
Its now been 12 months since I first walked into my local BJJ gym that fateful day. I’ve learned a lot not just about the sport, but myself, and life in general.
Below are some of my key take a ways from the journey so far.
#6: You’re never to old to start something new
As mentioned above — by my late 30s, I figured it was too late in the game for me to get involved into a sport that I perceived as being so rough and physically demanding.
Then I read a post on Medium by an ageing martial artist who was still starting new martial arts at the age of 67.
It got me thinking: if he can start later in life, so can I!
So it was that I took the plunge. I found that I wasn’t the oldest either — not by a long shot. There were many accomplished folks at the gym who were my age when they started, as well as a gentleman who was just starting out as a white belt at 65!
I also learned that you’re also never too young to start. I ended up enrolling my kids into classes too — including the 4 year old.
#5: It’s about the community not the specific sport
One reason I never really got going with martial arts properly before was that I could never pick one. I’d spend ages agonising over which was the most effective, or easiest, or least dangerous, as well as a number of other criteria.
One day, I was chatting to friend about this indecision and he said:
“Don’t worry so much about the specific art. Just find a gym with a good bunch of folks and get going. The vibe of the place is more important as it keeps you coming.”