Steer Clear of the Crazy Martial Arts InstructorBy Jennifer Shipp
I’ve seen video documentaries and heard stories or martial arts instructors who claim they can push someone over with their Chi. Every time someone tells me about an instructor like this, I feel a little embarrassed for martial arts as a whole. I believe in Chi. I do. But I’m not totally gullible enough to believe that an instructor who is sick, overweight, and arrogant can push another man down, from across the room, using Chi. Generally speaking, the instructors who claim to have these magical powers fit this description.
But even if they’re slim and fit and charismatic, I wouldn’t buy into the Chi myth that is always circulating around in martial arts schools throughout the country. And that’s mostly because I’ve studied hypnotherapy and I recognize what’s going on in these classes as a form of subversion. Students play-along because they feel like they have to or they’ll be ousted from the group. And once they start playing along, they actually start to believe their own performance.
Some students are more susceptible to these kinds of theatrics. You might be surprised at your own behavior when faced with a situation where everyone appears to be boggled by an instructor who aims his Chi at them. When it’s your turn to get up on stage, you can either fake it or create a big, nasty scene. Another option is to look like you’re the fool if you don’t respond to the Chi. It’s a strange paradigm and most people go ahead and do a performance.
During the Salem Witch Trials in Massachusetts back in the early days of settlement, young girls got drawn into drama not unlike what goes on in martial arts schools where instructors incapacitate students from across the room. Watch the movie The Crucible to better understand the dynamics of how a charade like this can get out of hand. And then ask yourself if an instructor who’s puppeteering his students in this way should be allowed to puppeteer you.
The best martial arts schools will have honest instructors with human powers that are entirely fallible. Don’t waste your time on a martial arts school where the instructors pretend to be gods.Tags: arrogant, chi, crazy instructor, honest, magical, overweight, salem witch trials, sick, theatrics