“The KB journey is full of challenges, and moments of joy when you break through them,” says KB Kickboxing instructor, Jess. “I think a big challenge for me when I was an intermediate level student was having patience. Becoming proficient in martial arts takes years, not weeks or months. It's good to be hungry for improvement but it doesn't happen overnight, and that can be frustrating. Developing patience with my kickboxing training helped me to enjoy it more fully and focus on the smaller 'wins' along the way. When I let go of the frustration and embraced the journey, I actually improved more quickly, too.”
This is great advice for beginners and seasoned martial artists alike. As Jess notes, once she relaxed and decided to embrace and enjoy each moment, she started seeing progress faster.
Sometimes, the challenges are seemingly simpler, but still need to be approached in the same forthright, positive manner.
Ryan, KB Kickboxing Black Belt, shared his thoughts, too: “Right at the beginning of my training the biggest challenge I had was just making the commitment to show up to class consistently. But the more I came in, the more results I saw from training. Applying yourself fully to something gets you infinitely better results than just dipping your toe in now and again. I try to apply that approach outside of the dojo now, too.”
“Kelly’s classes and grading are absolutely a challenge (an enjoyable one!) but they also help change your mindset from ‘I can’t, can I?’ to ‘yes I can!’ - which then makes a difference to non-KB life too, as Ryan said,” said Ruth, KB Orange Belt.
KB members learn many valuable lessons, one being that what they learn inside the dojo can also be applied to everyday life, as Ryan and Ruth say.
Deep-rooted negative beliefs are also something to be overcome:
“For me, a big challenge was that I didn’t believe in myself. I doubted I could learn more advanced techniques when they were shown for the first time. This mindset changed with time and with the KB instructors’ guidance. Today, I welcome the challenges in and outside the dojo with strength and perseverance. I know there is nothing I can’t achieve,” said Kelly FN, who recently achieved Black Belt standard in KB Kickboxing.
Sushil had a similar challenge when she returned after being away for one year: “I think for someone who took one year’s break, the challenge was to come back and wonder if I can still do it, if I can keep up with everyone. At KB, I have learnt I can! I have the confidence that with attending classes regularly again and having Kelly’s support, I’ll be back to my super fit self in no time.”
Self-belief can be taken for granted by those who have it, but it is a precious gift for those who acquire it with great effort, by overcoming adversity. The KB mindset that Ruth mentions is all about positivity and the refusal to give less than your best, no matter what level you are at.
Neil, who also faced challenges and has recently been awarded his KB Kickboxing Black Belt, says: “We all have our individual challenges to overcome, but there are similarities in how we overcome them due to taking on the KB mindset. One thing I’ve learned over the years is the importance of drilling things - if there’s a particular move that you find challenging, drill it as much as possible until it isn’t challenging. Another thing I learned was to aim higher than what is required of you. Aim higher, and you will overcome your challenges. As Kelly KB said once, we should have an obstinacy, an insistence, to think ‘OF COURSE I can!’ when faced with a challenge - and we will overcome it.”
Chief Instructor Kelly KB shared her thoughts, too: “The ability to fight is what gets us through life. We can try to evade, to not get touched, but when battered and brought down (naturally, I'm speaking metaphorically... there is no actual battering in my school), it's imperative that we get up off our knees. We must put one unfaltering foot in front of the next, until we're striding once more. We have no other option if we are to make the most of this existence of ours.”
From the varied comments, it’s clear that the challenges faced are personal to each individual, but they have one thing in common: they were overcome.
KB Fitness members develop patience and confidence, as well as self-belief and, of course, superior fitness. They learn traditional martial arts skills as well as life skills. They learn that, with the right support and self-belief, no challenge is insurmountable.
Keen to challenge yourself and become a martial artist, too? Book your first KB Kickboxing class today and start the journey to becoming your best and strongest self.