MAX Dojo Articles
These articles were written for our students
but anyone is welcome to read it...Our school has no agenda, philosophy
or political positions to promote. We are not salespeople.We do not
believe that our way is the only way. It is simply the way that works
for us and for the people we teach.If these articles or any of our words
are not to your liking, that is ok. It was not written for you.
It is easy to imagine that your teacher/sensei/sifu/master/guru is
all-knowing. Well, they are not. An instructor is as human as the next
person and just as fallible. This is one of the reasons why these
are not offering you any advice. That's right. We are not telling you
what to do, what to think, or how to act. Or who to be. You must find
those things out all by yourself...
If you're interested, please click on the
article links below...
Are you a Coward?
by Maurice A.
"In the course of development as martial
artists, we will pass through many stages of growth. Our lives in
general are very similar to our maturing in martial arts. We all go
through many changes in our martial arts development between novice
and instructor levels."
by Maurice A.
"Fear and stress are natural responses to
danger. They are the bodyís survival response. But, if you donít
understand these responses, learn what to expect and how to deal
with them, these same responses can take you by surprise and
Have People lost their way in Martial Arts?
by Maurice A.
"I was emailed a question a few days
ago from a person who really likes my articles I guess. Anyhow, this
question really struck something inside of me and got me thinking
(oh no, right?) Anyhow, here's the question that this person emailed
me, and this article is a copy of my response to that person.
NOTE: this might offend some people."
Maurice A. Gomez Sr.
1st Degree Black Belt Thesis
submitted to: Mr. Kongaika on Oct 1st, 2008
Each student is required to submit a black belt thesis paper
before they are ready to be tested for their 1st degree black belt
or any other degree black depending if your instructor requires it.
The thesis could be about any topic you choose but needs to be
martial arts related obviously. The thesis is an an effort to
promote critical thinking by advanced students. Expectations vary
from student to student as educational background, life and martial
arts experience dictate. The thesis is important because it makes
you look inside your head and spirit, and demonstrates to your
instructor what you have learned in the esoteric sense vs. the
physical. I believe that wearing a Kenpo black belt means more than
the ability to do all of the forms and techniques from memory- any
student can learn to do that. It is symbolic of a level of
cultivation of mind, spirit, and body. If you lack the mental
element, you should not be awarded the belt. I hope you enjoy it
Download PDF file
Why children should learn martial arts by Maurice A.
"I strongly believe that everyone can
benefit from martial arts training. Whether it is for the purpose of
enhancing one's ability to defend oneself, improving health and
fitness or sharpening mental discipline and prowess. "
Black Belt: What is it and what does it
represent? by Maurice A.
"We cannot fault non-martial artists for
holding such an idealistic, albeit erroneous, perception of a what a
black belt is. We, as martial artists, are partly to blame for their
misunderstanding because we ourselves do not hold a uniform,
singular or consistent view of the rank. A part of me (the
idealistic side) wishes we had an accepted and objective standard
for the coveted belt"
Advice On Surviving An Edged Weapon Attack by Maurice A.
"Many, not ALL instructors who teach knife
self-defenses to students sometimes donít understand how knife
attacks really occur. A common mistake, for example, is to emphasize
(or practice mostly) stick work, erroneously believing that
developing stick skills will automatically transfer to unarmed
defense against the knife"
My Student, My Teacher by Maurice A.
"Just as in life, you never know where your
next lesson will come from. So in both life and Martial Arts,
remember your student can also be teaching you important lessons.
I'd like to say that all Martial Artists are wonderful people, who
have embraced concepts that bring harmony to their lives...but I'd
American Kenpo, a Neophyteís Look by Marc
"My most recent martial arts instructor, Mr.
William Kongaika, asked me to compare some of the other martial arts
Iíve studied with American Kenpo. While Iím flattered to be asked,
I feel like one of the five blind Chinese asked to describe the
elephant. Their description largely depends on which part of the
elephant they were touching. I am a neophyte in American Kenpo with
about seven or eight monthís instruction. I am in no way qualified
to pass judgment on Mr. Ed Parkerís style."
Jealousy and Martial Arts by Maurice A.
"Have you ever been in class and become
upset because you arent progressing or getting it as quickly as the
person next to you? Have you ever found yourself annoyed because
someone else becomes a higher rank before you? Have you ever found
yourself hating another student because they can afford to spend
more time or money in their training?"
Discover your True Self by Maurice A. Gomez
Sr. (non martial arts related)
"Just think of this:
how well do you know your true self? And what is it exactly that you
know? How many personal facts or character features do you know?
What do you think of your true self? Is this the ultimate pride
youíre feeling, or maybe shame or even fear? Your self-growth and
the success of personal development efforts are entirely dependent
on how well you know yourself and how you feel about your
A Lesson on Filipino Crab Mentality by
"Below is a story I read on the blog of Kurma
Dasa: I find that the tale, tall or true as it may be, is one of the
best justifications for the Filipino to shed its innate crab
mentality all but ingrained into its fiber. Though many feel that
this trait is nothing more than that, one that is not harmful or
destructive. I beg to disagree, as you will see how much this story
below reflects crab mentality in its truest and most common form."
The Importance of being Humble by Maurice A. Gomez
"One of the core tenets of the martial arts is
humility, but unfortunately some practitioners don't seem to embrace
these values and instead insist on being aggressive, arrogant and
boastful. If you know someone like this you might want to show them
this short story about a wise Zen Master that is told in 'The
Warrior Within' by John Little."
The Real Sixth Sense by Maurice A. Gomez
"The sense of balance is one most of us take for
granted, yet in the traditions of every martial arts discipline,
mastery of balance played a primary role in developing fighting
skills. One reason is that in battle the greatest strategic
advantage lies in mobility. For the martial artist, mobility
requires both strong legs and excellent balance. "
Types of Destructive Energy Used in Martial Arts by Maurice A. Gomez
"If there is one word that can sum up what
martial arts teach, that is power. The creation and use of power or
energy (Chi in Chinese or Ki in Japan) is the primary focus of many
martial arts. Breathing techniques, weight training, conditioning
exercises, drills, forms, nutrition, and meditation all are ways of
generating and directing energy. All masters know that there are two
forms of this energy, the ying and the yang, the creative and the
Learn to Fight and Rise Above Your Fear by Maurice A. Gomez
"Fear has its undeniable dynamics in all forms
of street combat, with no exception, but you can rise above the
"fear factor" by adding a considerable mental feature to your
efforts of learning street fighting. Critical situation on the
street are possible at any moment - it is a good point to start with
for your preparation for facing the additional fear aspect. Do you
feel like you are the type of man or woman who simply freezes when a
street fighting situation occurs?.
Which Self-Defense Keeps You Safe? by Maurice A. Gomez
"There are a lot of different self-defense
classes offered. Every martial arts school, every fitness club and
even some personal trainers offer self-defense classes. How are you
supposed to know what is top and what is flop?".
Something Enlightening for Martial Artists by Maurice A. Gomez
"Every martial arts instructors goal is to
develop black belt students. My dream is that each of my students will
one day earn this honor. Unfortunately, the reality is that not everyone
will succeed. While there may be numerous reasons why an individual
deviates from his/her path to reach Black Belt, most of them are direct
opponents (or enemies) of student commitment".
Making your Goals Stick by Maurice A. Gomez Sr.
"The amazing thing about
the future is that if you wait, it will always come to you. This is
exactly what has happened, and we are now enjoying a new year. No
doubt you sat down and created your share of New Year's resolutions
to conquer during the coming months" READ
Being Tender With the Ugly Parts of Yourself by Maurice
A. Gomez Sr. (Non Martial Arts related)
"Does that title make you cringe? It made me cringe when it
popped into my head a few days ago.We don't like to think about our
"ugly parts," do we? By ugly parts of course I mean those aspects of
ourselves we perceive to be less than perfect. For some it might be
physical flaws like acne, jiggly thighs or a persistent pot belly no
matter how many hours we spend in the gym. For others there may be
emotional issues like fears, phobias or low self-esteem."
of learning by Maurice A. Gomez Sr.
"When a student is first learning
Kenpo or any martial art they learn the basic movements such as stances,
blocks, kicks, and strikes. This gives them the foundation they need to be
efficient in martial arts, especially American Kenpo. Now, in the beginning
stages, it is important to learn self-defense techniques, sets, and forms
step-by-step rather than the non-ideal phase otherwise it'll be too much for
them to grasp and their body and mind will not know how to respond, at least
effectivly." READ MORE..............
Kenpo is used by Maurice A. Gomez Sr.
"In this blog... I'm actually
writing out of frustration at the criticism American Kenpo (and its
derivatives) attracts from people who don't understand it! I get alot of
comments from people saying "how would you defend yourself against a UFC
fighter, or that' won't work against a grappler!" The general criticism is
that the self defense techniques that we practice "wouldn't work".