4 reasons why I started Shotokan Karate

I told Gordon that “I’m either in, or I’m out”. I’ve not got time to half-ass things these days, and no one ever achieved anything by ‘dipping their toe into the water’.

I met Sensei Mathie for the first time at our local weekly business networking club, which has turned out to be a fantastic growing relationship for both of us.

He’s very likeable, and a 6th Dan back belt with over 40 years of Karate experience! He’s an expert at what he does, no doubt about that!

It’s good to know that I’m being taught by one of the best.

When I was 15/16 (seems like a very long time ago!) I was really into Taekwondo, but I stopped going for whatever reason. That tends to happen when you’re a teenager – you discover other things to keep you occupied – mainly girls ;o)

In the past year or so I have had the notion to go back and do something with Taekwondo, but nothing has ever really ‘pushed’ me into it. Meeting Gordon was great timing and exactly what I needed.

Chris Marr Karate

Making Progress

Gordon encouraged me to come along for a trial Karate class, so I went along to the local Shotokan Karate class in Dunfermline and I was h anded a Karate suit, known as a Gi.

I think Gordon knew that if he gave me all the right stuff to wear that I would be more like to keep coming back, and he was right about that!

I passed my first grading a few weeks ago, which moves me on from white belt to orange belt. It feels good to be recognised for making progress.

4 reasons why I started Karate

Here’s the thing, I didn’t go to Karate just to learn Karate, I went for many other reasons.

Here’s an insight into what I get from Karate. Maybe it’ll give you a few reasons to try it too.

  1. Fitness – I’m nowhere near as fit as I’d like to be, and Karate is helping with that. It’s not full on like going to an aerobics class or anything like that, but even in the early days there’s a real fitness element – especially in the legs! The stances that I’ve been learning have been testing my core strength. Also, because I’ve committed to Karate I’ve also being going to a weekly fitness class to get my fitness levels up, so Karate has had a knock effect.
  2. Learning something new – I get bored pretty quickly, especially when it comes to exercise. With Karate there’s always going to be something new to learn – it never stops!
  3. Focus – My work occupies a lot of my waking hours, and sometimes my sleeping hours too! I was aware that I needed something to take my mind of other things in my life, and Karate works well for this. As soon as you put your Gi on and enter the Dojo, it’s all about Karate and you can really let yourself get into it.
  4. Meeting new people – I love meeting new people, especially when we have something in common.

I’m 3 or 4 months into this now, so it’s really early days, but I’m really focussing on it and putting in the time an effort. As I mentioned at the start, it wasn’t something I was going to dip my toe into, and I’m glad I went ‘all in’.

Achieving my black belt is firmly in my sights!

If you feel like you need some of this in your life then perhaps you should give it a shot. If you are in and around the Fife area, pop round to Bannatynes in Dunfermline from 7pm for the beginners class and have a go!

Here’s a short video testimonial that I put together: