• Jackie Bradbury

Living the (Martial Arts) Life

As readers of this blog know, I came to martial arts training late in life.


But once I found it...


Taking up the study of the martial arts completely changed my life in a number of important and dramatic ways.


I've written how it's helped me with my insomnia. I've also written how it's become something that Mr. Chick and I do together (and I believe it's important in marriages to have hobbies that the couple does together).  I started all this in the first place in a quest to get off my butt and stop a quickly approaching sucky old age (instead, I want to have a quickly approaching AWESOME old age).


I credit studying martial arts with saving my life, really - it changed me so dramatically that I am far healthier and happier than I was going to be if things hadn't changed.


It's a rare day where I am not doing something martial arts related - going to class, teaching a class, practicing, reading about it, watching video, or even writing about the martial arts here on this blog.  I do have a regular job - one I enjoy - but I don't spend a lot of time outside of work thinking about it (and I definitely don't write a blog about it).


Over time, the martial arts has come to dominate almost everything about me.


My family life is somewhat dominated by the martial arts.  All four of us - me, Mr. Chick, Older Daughter, and Younger Daughter - either train now or have trained in the past (Older Daughter is on break while in college, but we keep encouraging her to carve out time and maybe she will someday).


The family that slays together, stays together.

I don't drink like I used to, nor do I go out much.  Not that I'm opposed to it, mind you, I'm just so... busy.  I don't have time to do that stuff.


My social circle has become more and more martial arts oriented.  And usually, we're doing martial arts things when we get together.


I plan and prioritize my time based upon what I'm planning to do in the martial arts - and I have to plan months ahead, to accommodate seminars and camps I know are coming up.  Yes, this includes plans around holidays and vacations, and how I'll use what vacation time I have available to me.


85% of photographs of me taken in the last ten years are me doing something martial arts related (if you're curious, 13% are non-martial arts family-related, 1.5% are Kansas City Chiefs related, and .5% are "other").

Our future plans - where we're going to move, what we want to do in the future work-wise, where we want to live, what we want to do in retirement - is completely dominated by our martial arts goals.


Our family budget includes line items for training costs and martial arts equipment purchases. We have a special bank account set aside for those very things.


I came to it late, but I live a martial arts life.


I wouldn't have it any other way.


Tell me about how your participation in the martial arts affects how you live. Do you wish you were more balanced in your life?  Let me know in the comments!

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