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What A Black Belt Means To Me by Miles Kellner

When I was three years old Sensei Chris came to William Penn Center Preschool once a week to teach us the basic foundations of karate. I enjoyed learning karate because it was really fun and helped me get my energy out because I was (and still am, at age 10) a very active kid. Sensei Chris came back to my school again when I was four. That summer I asked my mom if I could take classes at the karate studio. She took me to visit the closest one to our house. It seemed cool and the Sensei’s were nice but, when we got to the car, I asked my mom if this was the studio where Sensei Chris teaches? My mom said no and I replied “Then I’m not going here. I want to go to AmeriKick where Sensei Chris works”.

I am so glad that my Mom and Dad took me to AmeriKick to begin my journey toward becoming a black belt. It has been a great seven years. I have put in a lot of hard work, blood, sweat, and tears. I have learned Modesty, Courtesy, Integrity, Self-control, Perseverance, and Indomitable Spirit.

Modesty – Training as a black belt has shown me modesty because I don’t brag or show-off about my karate skills.

Courtesy – Karate at AmeriKick has taught me good manners to my Sensei’s and the other students around me. I also get to help younger belts know what to do and how to do it (if the Sensei allows me to do so).

Integrity – I have never lied or been dishonest to all of my Sensei’s. I always try my very best in having good moral principles.

Self-control – I haven’t always had self-control because I am a jittery kid. But, when I am focused particularly on one thing, I snap into “training mode” and listen to my Sensei’s very closely.

Perseverance – Karate has helped me learn to persevere through tough times by teaching me to get right back up either in physically sparring or emotionally if I am confronted with a bully. I once was bullied by a kid in my class in second grade. I speared him over my shoulder one day at recess and he never even tried to come for me again.

Indomitable Spirit – Each day when I wake up, I am ready to fight any obstacle that tries to block me from my goals. No matter what comes along my path, I shake it off and keep on moving forward.

In conclusion, not only did Sensei Chris begin to show me the karate discipline, but everyone who I have met along the way at AmeriKick has assisted in this process. Other (teen) Sensei’s, karate classmates, and my family have guided me on my journey. I am grateful for their assistance and support in the pathway to attaining my black belt. Hopefully, I will get the chance to lead others with their black belt training by becoming a Sensei one day.