Muhammad Ali, Usain Bolt, LeBron James, Conor McGregor. They are all known for being the best at what they do. Name any of the best athletes or entrepreneurs in the world and they all have one thing in common. Regardless of what they do, when they started, or even where they are from, there is something that they all can agree on. They were once beginners. You can think of any role model you have and they all had to start somewhere at what they do. That means that they did not know what they were doing and they had to learn. This is extremely important to remember in life, but especially in the Martial Arts. On the mat, we say “All winners were once beginners.” This applies to kids, teens, and even adults. Everybody needs to start somewhere. One of the biggest fears that people face is the fear of embarrassment and what other people think. We see this in kids all the time. They are too scared to come on the mat to participate. And most of the time it is because they are starting something new and different and they don’t want to be seen as a beginner while everyone else seems to know what they are doing. The magic happens when they actually do step on the mat and they start to see how easy it is to do Martial Arts and how they good they are at it! All it takes is that one experience and a burst of confidence to start something new and realize how good you are at whatever it is you are doing. Sometimes, it is still scary and sometimes confusing when starting something new, so here are a few tips on how to become a champion at anything that you start!

  1. F.E.A.R.– F.E.A.R. stands for two different things and depending on which one you choose to believe determines your success or failure when starting something new. F.E.A.R can stand for Face Everything And RunorFace Everything And Rise! The kids who step on the mat and face their fears are the ones who have the best time and the most fun! That is because once they realized how easy it was to learn Martial Arts and how much fun it was, they had an awesome time! But then there are kids who never face their fear and they run away instead. They are the ones who miss out on seeing how good they really are!

  2. Consistency –One of the most important keys to success in Martial Arts is consistency! This is especially true for our newest students who just started. It does not matter if it is Martial Arts, a new sport, a new job, or even a new video game… it takes time! The more effort and time you put into something, the more you will get out of it. We call it spaced repetition on the mat and it is a very effective way to learn something when you are new at it.

  3. Remember the last “A” –On the mat, we call it the three “A’s” of a champion. Always try your best. Always get better. Always have fun. And when you are trying something new, especially the Martial Arts, its always important to have fun. You are putting in time, effort, and lots of focus, so make sure you are having a good time while you are doing it. We always say, “If it’s not fun, it’s not forever!”


Mr. Josh Sivel

Underground Martial Arts and Fitness Center 

Self-Defense, Strength, and Success Instructor

2nd Degree Black Belt