All posts by John Hughes

New Students: What to Expect as a White Belt

Your first few months as a white belt are terrifying, overwhelming, and awesome at the same time.
You’re always wondering if you’re doing it right, if the instructors think you have the ability and agility to do martial arts. You also wonder if you’ll ever be able to remember everything that you’re being taught, and if you’ll be as good as the teachers you have.
The best thing you can do as a white belt, black belt, or any belt for that matter is to relax, and let things flow. Learn what you can from everyone, because not everyone teaches the same way or has the same insights. When you learn new techniques you’ll feel overwhelmed, but try to remember one or two new techniques even if you’re shown 11. Chances are that you’ll see the techniques again and remembering two is a lot easier than remembering five or more. Take your time, and you will be amazed after a couple of months of all the different techniques you’ll know.
The best advice that I can give is just have fun! This is a journey not a race. It’s not to see who can get to black belt first. Belts are just belts, and a black belt is just a higher level white belt. Being a black belt the first time you stand in front of the class is just like being a new white belt all over again. You’re a little nervous because you don’t want to mess up, and teach something incorrectly, or look like you don’t know what you’re doing. You may have mastered the basics at black belt, but you’re far from a master and still need to relax, let things flow, and enjoy the journey.
Sifu John Hughes
1st Dan
Barongan Martial Arts