Checking out a new martial art

There are some people who find their passion and spend their lives indulging in it. That passion could be karate or just as easily writing poetry, travelling, cooking, vintage cars, coin collecting or anything else that you could possibly imagine. Part of me wishes I were someone like that, but my tastes are a little bit more diverse. I’m the kind of person who needs to try new things all the time. If I’m in a new country or even at a new restaurant, I always go for the food that I’ve never had. If you’re a bit like me in that regard, but know that your passion is martial arts you’ll probably want to try some new ones at some point. Here are my best tips for trying it out.

Try it with an expert. It’s important with anything, but especially where you are doing something physical and are potentially at risk of hurting yourself. Be sure that if you’re trying out some new techniques you’re with someone who knows what they are doing. Different marital arts use different movements and parts of the body, so having someone who can point out subtle differences is incredibly helpful.

Be open-minded. This is a bit obvious to say if you’re keen on trying something new, but it’s something that needs to be stressed. We tend to think of martial arts as originating from East Asia, but the truth is they come from all over the world. If you want to try something new, keep an open mind as to what martial art you want to check out. Coming from a karate background, for example, the dance-like moves of Capoeira may seem strange at first, but you’ll never know if you like it until you’ve tried it.

Do background research. Unless you’re planning on writing an academic paper, you don’t need to invest too much time and energy into researching a new martial art. However, you will probably find whatever you’re doing to be much more rewarding if you understand a bit more of the context of the marital art, such as its history, development and usage.

At the end of the day you may end up right back where you started. There’s nothing wrong with coming back to a first love, but there’s no greater reward for me than trying something new whether it’s for the body, mind, or soul.