Monday, April 28, 2014

Drop and give me 50

Different instructors motivate their students in different ways. If you come to one of my classes, you'll see that we focus on techniques, lots of repetition, and a good dose of humor. Yes, in my class you will have some fun while your eyes melt. Other instructors use other methods, and that’s not only OK, it’s good for the students to experience a variety of perspectives.

That being said, I’m not a fan of “motivation by punishment.” I’m talking about the use of push-ups, sit ups, or other physical admonishments usually dished out for some infraction of the rules or a failure to remember some detail. Oh, I get the whole dual benefit thingy, i.e the reinforcement of some rule as well as the benefit of the physical exercise. I just don’t like the message.

I’m really against negative reinforcement, and I really don’t like the notion of physical conditioning as punishment. What message does that send to our kids? Martial arts training should be a positive rewarding experience, not boot camp for n’er do wells.

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