Monday, June 23, 2008

The Gym versus The Dojo

I love going to the gym. I workout at night and arrive at the gym between 8:00 and 8:30. I walk into the gym and hand the attendant my membership card. The attendant might mutter a "thank you" but after that no one talks to me. It is glorious. During the day, I am bombarded with phone calls at work and chatter when I get home. I have an extremely articulate nine year old who talks all the time. You may think I am exaggerating. I am not. I love talking to her and hearing stories about her day, a t.v. program, the song she just made up, her plans for the future (the last I checked it was to be a zookeeper and an iron chef), her wii success, science, or her opinion about anything and everything. She is terrific and I am very lucky. However I must admit, I enjoy the hour of solitude and silence at the gym.

The dojo is different. There is a strong sense of community and belonging. I may have mentioned that I am in a unique dojo situation. I am involved in two dojo. My husband and I are students at the Federation Honbu. I teach at the dojo my husband started thirteen years ago. It it like being part of two families. Class time is full of interaction such as questions or discussions. I greet the students and parents as they arrive and spend a few minutes talking to them. I am connected to the dojo.

If I would have to chose between them, there would be no contest. I would chose the dojo. I am fortunate that I do not have to chose. My time at the gym has improved my strength and endurance. The gym augments my karate training and hopefully will reduce the chance of further injury. My bo strikes feel stronger and my sai work has improved.

I suppose that I should have titled the post: How the Gym improves my time in the Dojo.

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