Why Do Raleigh Martial Arts?

Raleigh Martial Arts Instructor with 3 of his students after a promotion ceremony.

Written By: Brent Rowe

Picture of martial arts instructor Mr. Brent Rowe.
Raleigh Martial Arts Instructor Mr. Brent Rowe. He’s the manager and senior instructor at Karate International of West Raleigh.

Martial Arts Makes You Persevere

I often struggle to follow through on my major life goals. It’s a character flaw I have. Many people are afraid to admit their deepest flaws, but as an instructor I strive to share the truth with my students. When things get hard my natural reaction is to run away. Then I remember my 10+ years of Raleigh martial arts training and how it taught me to persevere.

To be frank, achieving the rank of black belt is super challenging. It takes dedication and perseverance even for naturals. Regardless of age, this sport requires perseverance. People get sick, hurt, discouraged and unmotivated along the way to achieving the rank of black belt. As a result, martial arts isn’t easy! Because of the challenge, because of the adversity one must face, martial arts sharpens you into the person you need to be to achieve difficult goals.

We Provide a Strong Community

Family of 5 Karate International black belts posing together symmetrically.
Black Belt family at Karate International of West Raleigh

Perhaps my main driving force behind what I do is providing community. Having great people that encourage, inspire and motivate you is a cornerstone requirement to finding a great gym.

We provide space for the community, but it’s truly the people that make Karate International of West Raleigh special. Our culture is kind and inclusive to everyone, regardless of your walk of life. Finding a place where we put our differences aside to achieve a common goal is a necessity for personal growth.

Martial Arts Teaches Self-Defense

An increasing number of people are getting involved in MMA, Taekwondo, Karate, Jiu jitsu or some other form of martial art. As a result, more and more people know how to harm you and you don’t know how to defend yourself. That is a scary thought. It’s highly important that you at least know rudimentary level self defense.

How do we do it? Our Raleigh based dojo teaches karate, which is a balanced striking art. Many karate schools don’t teach what to do thoroughly once you take a fight to the ground, but our dojo is different. We combine the striking from karate and ground control from wrestling and jiu jitsu at our intermediate ranks to help prepare students for real life encounters.

A Gentle Warning About Self Defense

With that said, don’t let anybody fool you into thinking that martial arts makes you “street ready”. No amount of training can keep you from being blindsided. No amount of fist fighting will prepare you for a knife or gun encounter. Even if you trained for those situations, any instructor worth their salt is going to say the same. Although, martial arts does help you prepare for fist fights and general self defense.

Mike Tyson famously said, “Everybody has a plan until you get punched in the mouth.” You can read Mike Tyson explaining his most infamous quote here: https://www.sun-sentinel.com/sports/fl-xpm-2012-11-09-sfl-mike-tyson-explains-one-of-his-most-famous-quotes-20121109-story.html

Imagine a toddler with a sharpie and you try to take that sharpie away without getting marked. That’s what a knife fight is like. We teach our students to avoid potentially dangerous situations and to cooperate with armed assailants.

Want a Great Workout in Raleigh? We’ve Got You Covered!

The best way to exercise is to find something that isn’t a chore to do. I’m in great shape only doing things I enjoy doing. When you think negatively about the word exercise, you’re setting you (and if you have kids, your kids) for an unhealthy lifestyle.

We get in great exercise with bag work, katas, and general strength exercises. Bag work requires whole body strength because you’re using stabilizing muscles in your legs and core. In addition, you’re using lots of power to strike hard and fast, which helps increase your cardio too. Katas are fantastic cardio and also develop strength in the legs. These are fun alternatives to running or biking because they get you learning a useful skill that you can use for self defense. Also, punching stuff is just loads of fun!

It’s worth noting that strength related training is a fantastic supplement to karate or any martial art.

Character Development Through Martial Arts

As previously discussed, perseverance is an important part of any sport. Regardless of age, Raleigh martial arts (yes that’s a keyword plug, respect the hustle!) requires development of character to truly achieve excellence.

It takes years to achieve intermediate status in martial arts. Consequently, it takes roughly a decade of consistent training to become an expert.

People that are easily frustrated and disappointed, fearful and prideful, unkind or anything of the sort don’t have the guts to try something challenging like martial arts.

That may sound dire, but this applies to your whole life. Now that I’ve bummed you out, it’s time for hope and encouragement: The best thing about our community is motivating people to demand better from themselves.

Finally, the principles discussed above are applicable to all ages. These are things I teach my students irregardless of age.

Are You Feeling Inspired? Time to Check Us Out!

Here’s some links to help you get started:

Family Classes: https://sparkpages.io/?i=T6d

Little Samurai (Ages 3-5): https://sparkpages.io/?i=Lzd

Beginner Kids (Ages 6-11): https://sparkpages.io/?i=4zd

Teens (Ages 12-17): https://sparkpages.io/?i=Dzd

Adults (18+): https://sparkpages.io/?i=Mzd

Thanks for reading! I sincerely hope this helps you. Please contact me at customer.care@westraleighkarate.com if you have any questions!

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Discover why parents love our Preschool Martial Arts Program in Raleigh. It's the perfect blend of gross motor skills, personal development, and character enrichment, and gives your little one an edge when they enter a busy school setting.


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Parents LOVE our Raleigh Kids Martial Arts program because it teaches not only self defense, but also vital life skills like focus, discipline, respect, and more! Watch your child's confidence flourish and their grades improve with this awesome Child Greatness program.

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Fitness and Self Defense, two major goals for anyone looking for Family Martial Arts Training in Raleigh. It's time to change up your work out and get the results you've been looking for.

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