I’m glad you could join me in my martial arts journey with the Global Martial Arts University (GMAU) founded by Sensei Michael Hodge.
I have been training in Ultimate Bo under Sensei Michael since 2013 and have since then achieved the rank of blue in Ultimate Bo. Ultimate Bo (bōjutsu) is the only officially recognized white to black bo training style. It is rooted from Okinawan Kobudo movements (hence the Japanese greeting), but with a modernized, freestyle styling.
I started Ultimate Bo on a whim during college after stumbling across Sensei Michael’s Ultimate Bo course. While I was a dedicated martial arts participant in our university’s martial arts club, we were not permitted to practice weapons. Sensei Michael’s Ultimate Bo course served my purposes well since I couldn’t afford the money or time to attend a brick and mortar dojo, much less find a dojo that taught bōjutsu. With intense dedication to training and self-motivation, I earned my yellow and green chevrons in a single summer!
Then things took a downward spin when I tore my meniscus in my right knee during a martial arts training session with our on-campus martial arts club halfway through college. The fault was entirely my own and because of how silly and avoidable it was, it crushed my martial arts dreams as I had just earned yellow in TKD through our on-campus sensei. I could no longer run, jump, skip, pivot, dance, or even stand on my toes without inflicting further damage to my knee. I feared I would never be able do martial arts ever again. I quickly found solace in my Ultimate Bo training due to its low-impact on the legs.
I hadn’t lost my ability in martial arts entirely, I just needed to find another way of doing it. Ultimate Bo gave me that opportunity.
Since my knee injury (and it’s still torn), I have managed to earn up through my blue chevron in Ultimate Bo, and have started Krav Maga training with GMAU. I have never fully recovered from my knee injury, and I’m still rather limited on some exercises/activities. I haven’t let that stop me! I’m determined to push past injuries and find alternative ways of accomplishing my goals. After all, there’s always a way for those who are unwilling to quit.
I have started this blog to document the GMAU 90 Day Challenge, where GMAU students are challenged to train hard and earn their next rank in 90 days. The winner of the challenge will receive a $400 gift certificate to a cruise line of their choice (such as Carnival or Royal Caribbean). The runner-up will receive a custom GMAU training kit with two practice targets, boxing gloves, and a bag. All participants who complete the challenge will also receive a limited edition t-shirt.
I look forward to this challenge and hope to earn my next Ultimate Bo chevron – BROWN!
I make every effort to train somewhere that permits me to literally “train with a view.” My current home already permits me my dream view of an urban skyline on a lake, but I intend to find new places to work out that provide me with new and unique training experiences.