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Thursday, June 13, 2024

Peaceful Warriors Martial Arts

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Cory Rose
Cory Rosehttp://www.oklakicks.com
I have been involved in one art or another off and on since I was eight years old. The first school I attended was a Kenpo Karate school in the back of an old warehouse in small town Oklahoma. I wasn't what you would think of as a contact sport kid but I fell in love right away. Training became a huge release for me as I had some struggles through the years and fell in to some bad ways. That school had to close not much longer than a year after I started due to the Sensei having surgery and was unable to continue teaching. I bounced around to various other schools/styles. Anything I could find for as long as I could until the school either went under or there was absolutely no way for me to get there anymore. Between times of training in a school, I sought out other people who trained, in any style, and got them to practice with me and teach me what they were learning. I was kicked out of my house at the age of 14 and went to live with my father. From there I worked, when I couldn't have a job then I started working my own businesses in firewood. I ended up homeless at the age of 16-17 and got myself through school and into college. Not long after that I began to train in Taekwondo, my mother had also began training in Taekwondo a state away from where I was, but eventually we wound up in the same town/school, not long after a few long strings of unemployment and a near death hospitalization from blood poisoning and a mental breakdown. It was there that I traded work for classes, near my first black belt finally, my instructors realized that I had some severe anxiety issues that were difficult to overcome. To help they challenged me by saying I would not receive my black belt until I became proficient at teaching. I accepted the challenge, not long after I got my black belt they helped me to purchase an existing small school in a small town nearby. My mother helped me get it started as there were very few students, shoddy equipment, and it had been generally run down. Three years later we are in a wonderful 3000 sq ft location, grown from six students to eighty active and still growing. My mother is no longer involved but my wife and I run the business together and have been training up assistants and other instructors in the build to opening more locations under our curriculum, which was designed as a mix from multiple arts that I have studied, not just my black belt style. We brought in many other Black Belts from other styles to help us design our students path to black belt. We set out to create not just a school but an environment that was not only family friendly but that felt like a family. We feel like we have definitely achieved that as everyone is very encouraging, supportive, and close with each other. Whether its a new student walking in or an existing one. We even have some special needs students that are in our regular classes, with issues from autism to CP, and with the great leadership and help from other students even they are pushing themselves to new heights and being encouraged by everyone every step of the way to incredible levels. Martial arts was not just a venue for me to teach self defense or confidence ect.. but also how to be a good leader by giving respect and showing humility, not just making demands. We teach how to search your heart for your beliefs and principles on a core level and how to stand up for them and for others and their right to do so. Other than the physical side, using our word of the month program, it is also a venue to teach, and discuss, not just life skills, but the application and deeper meanings behind core values, how to help if you are capable of it regardless of if you want to but because you need to for your own principles. As we continue to grow I find myself stepping off the floor more and watching our assistants and instructors in training teaching much the same I taught them but with their own little twist, what I see is the spreading of a legacy, a coming back to the core principles of being human. Whether my name or our school is attached to it or not I don't care. Just the spreading of being a good person, truly open to others and doing the most good, and the least harm, to others and the world.

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