More Than Just A Hobby

Discussion in 'General Martial Arts Talk' started by PhotonGuy, Sep 20, 2018.

  1. PhotonGuy

    PhotonGuy Senior Master

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    Some people think martial arts is just a hobby, well I say its more than just a hobby, its a way of life. At least for some it is.
     
  2. JR 137

    JR 137 Senior Master

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    Sure it’s a way of life to some. But that doesn’t technically mean it’s not a hobby.

    IMO, if it’s not your profession or an essential thing like raising your children, eating, getting a required education, etc.; it’s a hobby. People do all kinds of things they take very seriously and entrench themselves in it. Some people get offended when what they’re passionate about is called or referred to as a hobby because they take it so seriously. I just don’t get how anything being called a hobby is an inherently bad thing.

    Karate has been a big part of my life for quite a long time, even during the 15 year or so hiatus I took from it. Outside the dojo, I read quite a bit about it, I watch videos about it, I talk about it here and elsewhere, I sometimes do unrelated exercises for the sole purpose of enhancing my karate skills, and so on. But that doesn’t mean it’s not a hobby. And that doesn’t mean I’m any less passionate, serious, nor entrenched in it if I call it a hobby.

    It being referred to as a hobby doesn’t change anything. It’ll cease being a hobby if and when I start training as a source of income.
     
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  3. Kung Fu Wang

    Kung Fu Wang Grandmaster

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    One of my friends told his wife that MA is his 1st wife and she is only his 2nd wife. I strongly agree with him.
     
  4. Rat

    Rat Black Belt

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    The latter is the issue if you dont want to pursue it for your entire life. :p
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2018
  5. Prostar

    Prostar Orange Belt

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    I have a black belt.
    I am a black belt.
    Which are you?
     
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  6. Flying Crane

    Flying Crane Sr. Grandmaster

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    I think i still HAVE a black belt. If so, it’s in a box in the garage somewhere.

    We’ve been doing some housecleaning and downsizing lately. I cannot be certain that I still have it.
     
  7. pdg

    pdg Senior Master

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    Neither...
     
  8. pdg

    pdg Senior Master

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    Ah, but will it?

    If you still practice outside of what is required for the profession then it's still a hobby imo.
     
  9. Headhunter

    Headhunter Senior Master

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    No one cares buddy....rank means nothing it's actual skill that counts
     
  10. Headhunter

    Headhunter Senior Master

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    To me it is a hobby....I've got more in my life than training. If I had to stop yeah it'd suck but I'd find something else
     
  11. pdg

    pdg Senior Master

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    My rank means something to me. I've worked to develop my skill and knowledge to surpass the standard required.

    It means something to my school. It helps them keep track of where I am in the syllabus and what I should be able to do.

    I stopped using it to compare myself to other students quite soon after my first grading test. I far exceed some others of the same rank as me, and I'm sure some far exceed me.

    It means absolutely nothing to you or anyone else ;)

    It shouldn't be a badge to be flaunted, because outside of my head, who cares?
     
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  12. JR 137

    JR 137 Senior Master

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    The line of profession vs hobby can be quite blurry. My teacher and his wife own the dojo. I can’t see how it’s much more than break-even. Judging by the number of students and what we pay for tuition vs the cost of keeping the place open, I doubt they’re pulling more money out of it than paying for them to go on vacation for a couple days a year. While they’re not ridiculously wealthy, they both had pretty good paying day jobs before they retired and have excellent pensions (he was in one of the local trade unions and she was a higher level office worker for an upper level state judge).

    They opened the dojo after a split in the organization as a way to keep training and teaching because they love that.

    One could convincingly argue it’s a hobby for them because they’re not living off the income nor attempting to. My argument is it’s not a hobby because they’re teaching professionally.

    A low level pro fighter who makes minimal money to fight and still works a day job is still a pro fighter, even if he loves fighting and would still train and fight as an amateur. One could argue that’s a hobby or it’s not purely a hobby anymore.

    There’s no good universal line here. The line I take is if they’re making money (doesn’t have to be a profit), it’s no longer a hobby. What they’re doing within it, even if it’s far more than the minimum, still contributes in one way or another to that profession. It’s professional development of sorts.
     
  13. pdg

    pdg Senior Master

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    I suppose it depends a bit on how the individual approaches it.

    If it's professional development (doing extra outside the job purely to help the job) then that probably leaves the hobby realm.

    But for example, I know a guy who is a pro cyclist - but he rides outside of that for fun. He'll just go for a potter about, or a camping weekend on his bike, or ride to the shops - that's not exactly helping or hindering his work, it's still a hobby.

    I'm currently a gardener - doing stuff in my own garden isn't development for my work, if anything it's using my work experience and equipment for my hobby of wanting a nice garden ;)
     
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  14. PhotonGuy

    PhotonGuy Senior Master

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    Alright, so that could mean you bought a black belt at a store or somehow or another came into possession of a physical black belt. Whether you got it by meeting certain standards at a MA school, bought it, or by some other means obtained it is not pointed out.

    So you're a black piece of cloth? That's what you're saying when you make that phrase.

    Now, if you were to say you're a martial artist of first dan or higher in a particular style or styles, that would give exact meaning to what you're saying.
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2018
  15. PhotonGuy

    PhotonGuy Senior Master

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    It could be a hobby if somebody is using it as such but the point is that it isn't exclusively a hobby and that there's people who use it for much more than just as a hobby.

    Its essential for some people. There are people who make a living with the martial arts. Bruce Lee would certainly not call the martial arts just a hobby.

    You could call it a hobby, for you it could be a hobby, but for other people its not always a hobby. For Bruce Lee it wasn't a hobby.

    Just because you're not making an income with it doesn't mean its not more than a hobby or that it isn't essential. As you point out anything that's essential is not a hobby. An income is essential, yes, but so are other things such as exercise. At least for me exercise is essential, and martial arts is an excellent form of exercise.
     
  16. Dirty Dog

    Dirty Dog MT Senior Moderator Staff Member

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    Grade school idolatry aside, it would be more accurate to say Bruce Lee made a living as an actor, not a martial artist.
     
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  17. geezer

    geezer Grandmaster

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    Drax "The Destroyer" is that you?
     
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  18. Dirty Dog

    Dirty Dog MT Senior Moderator Staff Member

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    Not unless you're insanely literal.
    Unless you're talking to someone with a fair knowledge of MA, or publishing your C.V., saying "I have A rank in B, C rank in D, E rank in F, G rank in H" is just going to make you sound arrogant and/or pedantic, and quite likely won't mean anything more to them than saying "I'm a black belt." And I really really really doubt you're going to find anyone who seriously thinks that means I'm a piece of cloth.
     
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  19. geezer

    geezer Grandmaster

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    MA is my hobby. I have a day job and I'm certainly not an MA "pro". I just run a small club. I started it up again about eight years back when the previous instructor, my si-dai (younger kung-fu brother) moved away. Rent, insurance, inflated association dues, and the cost of my own continued training (which involves traveling out of state) all add up to more than I receive in student tuition. In good years I've broken even.

    More recently, I've had to kick in around $100 dollars a month to keep things going. I still do it because I enjoy it, and because if I didn't, there would be nobody teaching my lineage of WC in my area. So, it's a hobby and a personal commitment. And it costs less than golf, skiing, or a lot of other hobbies.
     
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  20. JR 137

    JR 137 Senior Master

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    Bruce Lee wasn’t a hobbyist. He was a professional MAist. Why? That’s how he earned his living. Teaching, authoring books, etc. What did he do for a living before he was “discovered” by movie/tv people? I’m pretty sure he was a MA teacher. I don’t know for certain, but I’ve never heard anything along the lines of he left his carpentry job to pursue acting.

    He surely made more as an actor, but his MA wasn’t exactly a side gig. And what would his acting career been if he wasn’t a MAist? Non-existent IMO.

    But again, the line between hobby and not a hobby can get pretty blurry. I use income as my line. One could argue how much income too.
     

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