Don't know if this is the right place to put this, but I have a question or two..

Izzyreal

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Hey everyone, and before I begin. I know you probably get guys who sound like me a lot, coming in here sounding enthusiastic and ambitious. But hear me out.

I have wanted to continue my martial arts training for a long time. (I'm sure you've heard this one before..). I started going to a Shotokan Karate dojo a ways away from our house, it was moderate distance. So it worked! I went there for a few months, got my belt promotion. I finally felt like I was pursuing my dream. Then, due to financial reasons with the 'rents. I'm not able to go anymore.

So I decided the next best thing was to work from home. I have been keeping myself in shape, I exercise every hour, on the hour. Because sitting to long isn't good for anyone, and since I'm home schooled I spend a lot of time at my computer.

I practiced the Katas and forms I was shown from my Sensei, every day. I don't recall how long it's been since I stopped going, at least a few months. But I'm typing this hoping to reach out and get some advice. Preferably I want to learn Jeet Kune Do! Bruce is my inspiration, and one of my heroes. But life isn't always gonna be easy.

I know peoples opinions of learning a martial art on your own from home, I get it guys. But some people don't have any other way. I'll find a way, you can count on it. A great source, amazing website, something. Anything. I'm gonna make it happen. I just, am at a loss right now. Opinions?
 

tshadowchaser

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first welcome to MT.

Have you tried talking to your old instructor or the owner of that school to see if you could study in return for working around the place( clean up, washing floors, mats, etc) ?
Trying to learn from videos , etc. can be accomplished but it really takes an instructor watching you and correcting your mistakes ( small or large)
 

Tony Dismukes

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You're going to get an almost universal response here that you can't learn martial arts without an in-person instructor. My answer is a little more nuanced. I'll say you can't learn martial arts without feedback.

Instructional information is easy to come by. There are plenty of great instructional videos out there. There's even good info available for free on YouTube, although you don't really have the experience to distinguish the good from the bad.

The problem is that without feedback, you really have no way of knowing when you are developing bad habits and crappy technique.

There are several ways to get effective feedback on your progress once you've practiced a technique.

You could go out and get into a lot of fights and see what is working for you and what isn't. There are a lot of obvious problems with this approach - starting with the ethical issues and ending with the legal and medical consequences. Beyond that, there's the practical limitation that you won't want to take the risk of testing out new techniques that you're not sure of yet when the outcome might be an extended hospital stay.

There are martial arts that started out with founders who took this approach, but I don't recommend it in this day and age.

You could get some friends to form a study group to train with and do lots of free-sparring and experimentation to see what is working. This is better than getting in real fights, but there are still issues. There's a high chance of injuries unless the participants have the background and training to know how to practice safely. You'll progress a lot more slowly than you would with a good instructor. Ultimately, your progress will depend a lot on how talented your training partners are. A study group made up of experienced fighters, martial artists, and combat athletes could make significant progress. A study group consisting of you (with a few months training) and your buddy who watches Kung Fu movies a lot isn't likely to produce much of anything beyond entertainment and some occasional bruises.

If you are dead-set on this approach, you could sign up for the online classes at Gracie University (which are cheaper than most dojos) and get a friend to practice the lessons with. You will not get any benefit out of those lessons unless you practice them with a partner and scrupulously follow the instructions regarding safety, practice methods, and providing feedback to each other. Even so, it won't be as good as actual in-person instruction.

Finally, you can do what just about everybody here will recommend - wait until you can attend real classes with a real instructor who can guide you and give you immediate feedback on what you are doing. Maybe you can find cheaper classes at the local Y. Maybe you can do as tshadowchaser recommends and barter services with your old instructor. Maybe you can just keep exercising and keep fit until you are on your own and can pay for your own lessons.

In any case, be patient. You're young and you've got lots of time ahead of you for study of the martial arts. Waiting a little bit won't kill you.
 
OP
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Izzyreal

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You're right, ^. I could just wait, then once I can afford it myself attend. It's my dream to be a martial arts master of some caliber. I just feel like I'm wasting time, when I could be training.

I'm 16, so I should just go get some part-time day job. It'll help pass the time, and with the money I obtain. I'll use that to pay for it. But what I'm really trying to do with that money is acquire some sort of motor vehicle.

I appreciate all the responses so quickly guys, it's given me some sort of hope. Albeit, not my favorite response to waiting. But you're right, I'm still young. My entire life could be dedicated to it beyond years 18+.

I'm gonna check out Gracie University. But I don't think anything could beat having a instructor there, smacking your knee quickly with a Shinai when your posture loosened due to being tired.

Again, I really due appreciate it. Also! Since I found this great resource. I'll probably be floating around these forums, for a long time. Just sitting here reading about martial arts is awesome enough. Until I can practice some sort of it.

Thanks!
 

Human Makiwara

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Find a program at a rec center or YMCA. There are many great instructors that can get you rolling on the basics. IT sounds like this is where you are at. Price should be a bit lower than a storefront school.
 

pgsmith

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I know peoples opinions of learning a martial art on your own from home, I get it guys. But some people don't have any other way. I'll find a way, you can count on it. A great source, amazing website, something. Anything. I'm gonna make it happen. I just, am at a loss right now. Opinions

Greetings sir!
Since you've asked for opinions, here's mine ...
Given your current age, I would recommend that you seriously apply yourself to your schoolwork. If you do well enough at school, you'll be able to get into a good college. Applying yourself to your studies in college will allow you to get a good job somewhere that has a good quality dojo. That good job will allow you the spare time and money necessary to learn all of the martial arts you desire for the rest of your life. It will allow you to travel for seminars and competitions. While it doesn't sound glamorous and is difficult to put off your desires, one of the most overused martial arts clich矇s is that every journey must start from the beginning. You are young enough to be able to guide your beginning to where you want it to be. Taking advantage of that is my advice. If you're able to throw in a little martial arts training on the side at this point, well and good. However, it should definitely be an aside to your other requirements.
 

Bill Mattocks

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Welcome to MT. I am glad you want to continue training, and many of us fully understand financial difficulties. I do not believe self-training or distance training, even with feedback, is possible for anything but the most rudimentary of skills. It just cannot be done. As pgsmith suggested, dedicate yourself to school, get a scholarship to college, and you will find training becomes available to you. Consider it a real test of endurance, the 'Chop wood, carry water' sort. If you want good, real, training, you will wait until circumstances will permit you to get it in person from a qualified instructor. In the meantime, get into shape or stay there if you are already in shape, practice stretching and balance, and jump rope.
 
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