View Full Version : Martial arts and temperament

20th December 2002, 22:49
In Kerwin Benson's 'Martial Arts Mastery' newsletter, an interesting question was raised: How has your study of the martial arts affected your temper? I think mine is much better, although this may be just a result of age. Do you think yours has improved?

20th December 2002, 23:41

I thought it was interesting that when I was practicing Aikido, I tend to "blend" a little more in the way I speak.

Now that I stopped Aikido and picked up Kendo again, I'm more "direct" with the way I speak and act.

I wonder how Iaido is going to change all this....


Steven Malanosk
21st December 2002, 12:25
I have seen both extremes, from various people throughout the years.

A way of relieving anxiety or focusing ones mind, or evening out the introvert or extrovert tendencies in ones being, are the goals of various practitioners.

I see the good, the great and the total opposite in case to case scenario.

The competitive mentality, of win win win, is great for building extroverted ideation. However, in many cases, unfortunately, the opposite of what I see as good, prevails in this school of thought.

Self confidence, from learning how to "fight real good," is satisfying to say the least, and should develop a person less prone to anger, since he has nothing to prove. However, in many cases, the macho "how dare he disrespect me!", attitude prevails, as a matter of so called honor.

Much like forming the mentality of an American Pit Bull Terrier, the teacher, is or should I say, should be, responsible for helping the student cultivate a proper attitude, along with the training.

That can go either way. "UNDERSTATEMENT."

The extroverted cocky mentality that many exude without good reason, is all to extant.

The pseudo humbleness that is associated with the Japanese martial arts persona, is the other extreme.

My teacher always told us that, "humility is the height of conceit."

I have seen masters, with very opposite attitudes than what they show publicly, or what most would expect from them.

Self actualization can and is often gleaned from a lifetime in the martial arts. This leads to an even temperament.

One must first master the control of self, before they can approach the control of others.

If you don't master the control of yourself, you are destined to be controlled by others.

24th December 2002, 20:35

I cannot begin to tell of the awys I learned patience. I'm not the patron saint of patience, but I can see a big difference. I do find however, I have little tolerance for "fakes" or loafers(the person not the shoe) in the dojo. I had a temper as a child, but now I only get an occasional case of vehicular tourettes. That's blessing out the people with minimal driving skills. But over all, I believe with the right instructor you can't go wrong.

25th December 2002, 16:57
How can one differentiate between the changes made by time and those made by his years of training ?

Non of us claims the change in character comes over a short period of time, it take years, through these years, we all pass through lots of other events which also contribute to change our temperament.

So, how could anyone say with certainty, this was done by time and that by learning M.A. ??


I do believe the M.A. have their own effect, I just can't distinguish it from the rest.

10th March 2003, 10:16
I remember getting into fights with my brother lots and lots of times during high school. We're a very temperamental family ^-^ Me and my brother extremely. But when we started taking taekwando together (this was years back) the fights have lessened. We were more relaxed in each others presence..