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Looking At The Martial Arts Business

Aug 17, 2007
People often try to separate martial arts business from martial arts lifestyles and martial arts traditional teachings. This is a horrible thing to do, as it turns a way of life into nothing more than another sport. The philosophies and histories can be applied to all parts of life.

Miyamoto Musashi's Book of Five Rings is a classic example of incorporating traditional martial arts training into business. All of the traditional martial arts principles and strategies of the samurai in feudal Japan are applicable to the business world today. There is no reason why you can't take your traditional martial arts training into the boardroom. Traditional martial arts training teaches more than how to fight and defend yourself -- it builds your mind and spirit too. While you strengthen your body, you strengthen your mind and spirit. You become more confident with each lesson you learn or test you successfully pass. Hard work, dedication and confidence in oneself are what make a successful martial artist -- and those same qualities make a successful executive.

Musashi divides his strategies into the classic five elements that can be easily applied to martial arts business: Ground, Water, Fire, Wind and Void (spirit). Each of these strategies has the qualities of the elements they are named after.

Ground represents strategy. This element provides the foundation upon which all the others are built. Ground is all about seeing the "big picture", like reading a roadmap that gives you the lay of the land.

Water teaches us how to be adaptable in any situation. Through Water, we learn how to flow around our obstacles to reach our goals. Water is probably the single most powerful element next to Wind, or air. Water can slowly wear away anything in it's path, it can also nourish and give life.

Fire is all about energy, fighting and a strong will to succeed. You can have a helpful fire that brings warmth and the spark of inspiration to others, or you can have a brush fire -- a raging inferno that destroys everything in it's path. Sometimes destruction is a necessary evil, as you get rid of what is no longer working to make way for new life to grow.

Wind is tradition. Wind teaches us to remember our roots, where we've been and how we got here. Wind also teaches focus. It makes us realize when we have blown off course and need to get back on track.

Finally, there is Void. As Bruce Lee said in Enter the Dragon, "Don't think. FEEL. It is like a finger pointing away to the moon. Do not concentrate on the finger or you will miss all that heavenly glory." Void is all about the journey, not the destination. While it is good to have goals, you shouldn't be so focused on the end result that you fail to see the whole process. Learn how your project or business works, find the rhythm and use it to your advantage. The martial arts business hasn't forgotten any of these principles and it's been around for thousands of years.

As has been pointed out, the martial arts business has been using these principles for thousands of years. Would you like to create a business that lasts for thousands of years? Traditional martial arts teachings aren't a magic key, of course, and won't solve all your problems -- but they can certainly give you the building blocks to start.
About the Author
Knowing the art of martial arts is an asset for protection. Claim your free karate secret gift, and more useful information about the martial arts business from Mike Selvon's portal, and leave a comment at his martial arts blog.
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