Ten thousand hours until mastery

girlbug2

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The other day, my dh (who is a master craftsman and a black belt) told me that if you want to master something, it takes at least 10,000 hours of practice. I thought he was exaggerating, and asked him if he really spent 10,000 hours before he believed he had mastered his craft. He seriously told me Yes.

"And it was at least a few thousand hours before I even started seeing it in the right direction".

Then I calculated the number of hours I have spent practicing Krav Maga in the past 17 months....well under one thousand. :( How the heck does anybody keep from getting discouraged in the martial arts?

Who here has ten thousand hours under their belt, so to speak? What did you have to do mentally to persevere?

Do you agree with the ten thousand hour rule? I'd love to hear your POV.
 

Flying Crane

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well, 10000 hours is 416.66 days non-stop.

Or, at two hours a day, five days a week, its 1000 weeks, which is 19.23 years. So getting close to 20 years of steady practice at a do-able pace. For real mastery, maybe that's reasonable, but that of course depends on the individual. Some people "get it" faster than others. I've been training for about 25 years now, but I doubt I've averaged 10 hours a week. At times I've done much more than that. At other times I've done much less. I don't feel like I've mastered anything yet.

Personally, I always took this kind of statment to be a bit allegorical. It takes 1000 repetitions to master the spear, 10000 for the broadsword, and 100000 for the sword. But who's really counting? It just means "a whole lot, so keep going and don't quit." We are in the school with no graduation, after all.
 
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Haze

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The arts becomes part of your life or it does not. Like all things there may be some feelings of discouragement but we need to look at what is causing this and move on. Everyone that trains learns at a different rate and needs to only be concerned with what they are doing and not what others may be doing. Again, we all learn st different rates.

As far as Mastering an art. ,,,,,,,,,, I don't think we ever master anything. To me to master something would be to perfect it, to have a skill that is always at perfection. I think we practice and by doing so we eliminate errors and may get closer to mastery/perfection but we will never reach it.

I have a barbers license which gives me the right in my State to "practice" barbering. After 37 years I'm still practicing. Same with the arts. 22 years and I'm a practitioner or one who still practices.
 

seasoned

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The arts becomes part of your life or it does not. Like all things there may be some feelings of discouragement but we need to look at what is causing this and move on. Everyone that trains learns at a different rate and needs to only be concerned with what they are doing and not what others may be doing. Again, we all learn st different rates.

As far as Mastering an art. ,,,,,,,,,, I don't think we ever master anything. To me to master something would be to perfect it, to have a skill that is always at perfection. I think we practice and by doing so we eliminate errors and may get closer to mastery/perfection but we will never reach it.

I have a barbers license which gives me the right in my State to "practice" barbering. After 37 years I'm still practicing. Same with the arts. 22 years and I'm a practitioner or one who still practices.
Not trying to get off tract, but to recognize a very important virtue. It sounds like you have learned the one true teaching that is not grasped by everyone. And, it seems you have learned it in you training life as well as your working life. This is a quality that many should strive for, but few realize. To be humble, is indeed a very important attribute.
 

seasoned

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I attended a four year program to become a skilled sheet metal worker. That constituted 8320 hours before graduation. I subsequently worked another 18 years. I have trained in martial arts over 15000 hours. The most I can tell you is, that I am tired. Life is an awesome ride, loving it is the most important part to maintain your sanity. :asian:
 

Tez3

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Girlbug, what's a dh? Is it an Americanism lost on me?
 

Tez3

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I'm guessing its dear husband and not the name my missus calls me when she's angry.

LOL! Hey, I've watched Aussie soaps and I know how vicious the name calling can be lol!
 

Bill Mattocks

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The other day, my dh (who is a master craftsman and a black belt) told me that if you want to master something, it takes at least 10,000 hours of practice. I thought he was exaggerating, and asked him if he really spent 10,000 hours before he believed he had mastered his craft. He seriously told me Yes.

It is becoming a meme.

I don't know about the truth behind 10,000 hours - if it really is 10,000 hours or 12,000 or 17,000 or what. But I do believe what Gladwell has found (and not just him, others found it too before him), which is that people we think of as extraordinarily talented at something - anything - from piano playing to chess to painting to singing to martial arts - all of them put in amazing amounts of time PRACTICING. It's sick how much time they put into the thing that they're so good at. We are amazed by them, we think they must have been born with this amazing talent, we think we could never be like them. Well, probably we couldn't, and I'm sure some of them do have special talents that make some things come easily to them. But really, most of it is just plain, old-fashioned, hard work.

Like dieting - there is no secret. Eat less and exercise more. That's it. You do that, you will lose weight. But people can't seem to push their fat asses back from the table, or go run around the block a few times, and so diets become the way to find success - read a book, try some new fad, hope it works. Martial arts is no different. Find a style you like and a competent teacher and work, work, work. Practice until you're sick to death of it and then do it some more. Masters are made, not born.

Hey, I'm just a newbie at MA. And I'm 48, so the idea of putting in 20 years - I don't even know if I've got that much time left in my life. But I'm ready to do it, and I'm not in a hurry. If it takes 10,000 hours, then the more I put in this week, the closer I am to my goal.

http://bradleykay.wordpress.com/2009/01/14/10000-hours-to-mastery/

10,000 Hours To Mastery

January 14, 2009 by bradkay

Great short interview of Malcolm Gladwell of Tipping Point success.
Malcolm Gladwell, best selling author of The Tipping Point and Blink, has a new book Outliers. Apart from being an excellent book on success, it may give insight on Gladwell himself, since he would appear to an outlier too. In this interview, Gladwell states that in order to achieve true mastery of something, you need to spend approximately 10,000 hours at it.



http://thesmallbusinessguru.com/rec...coach-only-10000-hours-to-masteryhow-bout-it/

In Malcome Gladwells book The Outliers - (outliers - the people who lie on the outside of ordinary experiences. People who have achieved amazing results.) Gladwell talks about this in his book The Outliers: The Story of Success; he references a study done by scientists that discovered that violin students who practiced 3 to 4 hours a day, with increase in hours over 20 years, students who practiced an accumulation of 10,000 where the masterful players, with those students who only played an accumulation of 8,000 hours were merely really good players.
He defines failure as not getting your 10,000 hours in - doesnt mean that your not good, but you just need to put more hours into perfecting your passion.
Gladwell talks about the Beatles. Early in their career they played eight hours a night, seven days a week - by the time they hit it big they had performed 1200 times - more than most bands play in their entire careers!
 

Archangel M

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Sounds like the "It takes 1000 repetitions to ingrain a movement into muscle memory" meme..I dont know if there is real science behind that one either.
 

Ken Morgan

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A full time job, 8 hour days, 40 hour weeks, 52 weeks a year will come to 2080 hours of work in one year. (Not including holidays and vacations.)

Ive heard 80 year old 8th Dan Hanshi, practicing for 60 years say that competitions, gradings and demonstrations are just all practice. Nothing is done any differently, same, same, same. Its all practice.

Technically they are JSA gods, but they consider themselves only students. When I first heard about this attitude I was in my second year of practice, now in my 10+ year, Im starting to get it and Im really trying to emulate such an attitude.

It doesnt matter the time in, we are and always will be just students.
 

Flea

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I have a barbers license which gives me the right in my State to "practice" barbering. After 37 years I'm still practicing. Same with the arts. 22 years and I'm a practitioner or one who still practices.

Haze, this reminds me of a conversation I had with someone on religion. She said that to her, the statement "I am Christian" implies the achievement of spiritual mastery in that path. Nobody truly achieves mastery in this arena; even Jesus lost His temper. Instead, she said she preferred the term "practicing Christian," in that she practiced and rehearsed in hopes of reaching that mastery some day. Very similar to our conversation on the arts here.

The long pluggings-away raises the question for me of what keeps us coming back year after year. Best for another thread ... :uhyeah:
 

zDom

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10,000 hours sounds like a bit much :)

I've heard (and told people) that it takes 1,000 reps to get a basic familiarity with a technique or kick and 10,000 reps to really master it.

I think these are somewhere BETWEEN allegorical and literal.

I mean, it's not like a video game where DING! you suddenly are a master front kicker :)

but it does take somewhere around those actual numbers, I would think you are NOT going to really understand how to do a decent sidekick after only 200 reps, for example.

But whether someone "gets the hang of it" after 800 or 1,200 depends on the individual.

But then again, I'm sure I'm well over 10,000 reps on my sidekick and I still see a lot of room for improvement ...
 

celtic_crippler

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Then I calculated the number of hours I have spent practicing Krav Maga in the past 17 months....well under one thousand. :( How the heck does anybody keep from getting discouraged in the martial arts?

Who here has ten thousand hours under their belt, so to speak? What did you have to do mentally to persevere?

Do you agree with the ten thousand hour rule? I'd love to hear your POV.

It's a matter of perspective. Do you view your training linearly; with a definite end place where you will eventually reach a level where you can stop, or do you view it as a journey of continuous self-improvement?

If you have a definate "destination" in mind then your training can seem daunting, but if you view it as a lifestyle of consitantly trying to be better day after day...then it's not...it's just another day of fun in the dojo. :)

That being said, repitition is the key. Practice, practice, practice... and practice some more. Reinforce muscle memory, examine technique, look for holes in your training & areas you can improve.

Nobody's perfect so there will always be room for improvement. When you attempt to be better today than you were yesterday, then every day can be rewarding in itself.
 
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girlbug2

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LOL men must think alike, when I first referred to my husband in an email as "DH", he thought I meant the other DH and he was quite offended.
 
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girlbug2

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It is becoming a meme.

I don't know about the truth behind 10,000 hours - if it really is 10,000 hours or 12,000 or 17,000 or what. But I do believe what Gladwell has found (and not just him, others found it too before him), which is that people we think of as extraordinarily talented at something - anything - from piano playing to chess to painting to singing to martial arts - all of them put in amazing amounts of time PRACTICING. It's sick how much time they put into the thing that they're so good at. We are amazed by them, we think they must have been born with this amazing talent, we think we could never be like them. Well, probably we couldn't, and I'm sure some of them do have special talents that make some things come easily to them. But really, most of it is just plain, old-fashioned, hard work.

Hey, I'm just a newbie at MA. And I'm 48, so the idea of putting in 20 years - I don't even know if I've got that much time left in my life. But I'm ready to do it, and I'm not in a hurry. If it takes 10,000 hours, then the more I put in this week, the closer I am to my goal.


http://thesmallbusinessguru.com/rec...coach-only-10000-hours-to-masteryhow-bout-it/


I get it-I'm starting MA later than I'd like to, also. I keep thinking that if I had begun this in my teens or even 20s how great I could be by now at this rate. Oh well, water under the bridge.
 

jks9199

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Another thing about the 1000 hours/reps/whatevers and mastery... It's like professional experience. I know guys who have been cops for 20 years. Some have 20 years of experience. Others have one year, 20 times.

One rep, one hour, they're not all equal. There's a place and a need for the mindless simple "do it 'cause you gotta" rep or time. But it's not the same as spending a fully involved, mindful, concentrated minute. That's something else that often separates the masters from dabblers. Some dabblers practice even more than the masters... But in an hour of practice, they spend part of that time thinking about how good the master is, part of it thinking about their next water break or the cute girl/guy on the other side of the training hall, trying to decide how what they thought the instructor said fits with what they want to do anyway... and only achieve maybe a minute or two of real focused practice. The masters may only practice for five minutes -- but it's what they do for that five minutes or that hour. They're in that moment of training.

(No, this is not an excuse not to train because you're mind is unfocused!)
 

J Ellis

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Those of us who also practice multiple arts, or who train in complex systems, need to consider how we divide and focus our training time. Spending 10,000 hours practicing MA does not necessarily translate to 10,000 hours and mastery of one art or skill set. Obviously there should be some carryover because of universal principles of physics, biomechanics, etc. But not everyone trains with a conscious pursuit of perfection in applying these principles.10,000 hours of focused practice with basic techniques and patterns would make a practitioner scary indeed.10,000 hours of haphazard, distracted, or lazy practice with conflicting theories will make a practitioner scary, indeed.Joel
 
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