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Book details
  • Genre:BODY, MIND & SPIRIT
  • SubGenre:Inspiration & Personal Growth
  • Language:English
  • Pages:250
  • Format:Paperback
  • Paperback ISBN:9781098338367

Martial Art Over 50

One Man's Dream The Inner Aspect

by James Killingsworth

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Overview
This book is about the practice of martial art and particularly taekwondo, for those of you in middle age or in your senior years. It covers how to begin training in your later years and how to obtain excellence in competition. In this book nutrition, injuries, training, flexibility, yoga, meditation and many other aspects of martial art are explored from the perspective of achieving a major goal in your life. The training includes warming up, stretching, acceleration, explosiveness, targeting, plyometric exercises and sparring choreography. The inner aspect of martial art is revealed by chapters on Lighting the Pilot Light, the Law of Effort, the Sparring Mind, the Value of Forms, the Role of Music in Martial Art and Meditations. These chapters indicate the real benefit of the practice of martial art in your life. It is your inner growth that will spill over into your ordinary life and will crystalize and realize your individuality. Competition is explored in depth by specific training in the knowledge of the strength and weaknesses of each technique. The different kinds of fighters are enumerated and how to fight them successfully. The chapter on Tournament Preparation will help you compete and achieve your goals in modern taekwondo competition. This book contains pictorial guidance of the training methods, stretching postures and injury rehabilitation that the author has developed and practiced over many years. In the writing of this book, the author wishes to share with you the experiences of his journey in martial art, his extensive competition success and the achievement of his dream in martial art over 50. He wishes this for you with all of his being.
Description
This book has been written for the benefit of those men and women who wish to practice martial art and particularly taekwondo in their later years. These are to me, the most remarkable people. I have known many. The wish to grow in the sense of being and to strive to find out about yourself within the crucible of martial art is a very high aim. Most people at age of fifty or older are winding down their lives, becoming more sedentary and relinquishing their remaining potential to the relentless reclamation forces of Mother Nature. But to those who wish more from life and are striving to develop their individuality under the auspices of martial art, it is to you that speak. It is to you that I bow and acknowledge this high aim and the path that I have traveled. Although this book is primarily for seniors who begin martial art late in life, the principles therein can be useful even for those who have practiced since childhood. For time passes through all of us and we are all are students in the aging process. In fact, this journey for seniors can be even more rewarding than for young people in the sense that it is much more difficult without youth. For instead of youth, seniors have to overcome two obstacles. The first obstacle is all of the difficulties that are associated with the practice of martial art. The second obstacle is all the difficulties that are associated with the aging process. The contents of this book will reflect the uniqueness of my background in life. Being a pharmacist by profession, with degrees in biology and chemistry, I have devoted many years of service to the sick, the aged and dying. That has instilled in me a deep desire to understand the aging process and how to retard it. In this book, nutrition, injuries, training, yoga, meditation and many other aspects of martial art are explored from the perspective of achieving a major aim in one's life. In addition, my participation in esoteric groups over many years has revealed to me inner knowledge of the laws of the body, mind, feelings and the importance of their continued growth. To most people, the horizontal or external aspect of martial art is all they will ever know. Yet to a few, there is a great yearning to penetrate the external and seek the essence, or inner aspect. These people have a deep longing to understand their life and to grow as a human should, as a self-evolving creature. This is vertical development or self-individuality. To be sure, there must be a balance between the outer and inner aspects. It is this balance I strive to elucidate in this book. It is my wish that martial art can penetrate your essence and open you up to knowledge and understanding of a deeper level of being. Come now, we have much to do.
About the author
James began his martial art journey in 1962, when he and two friends, Jack Hebert and Jimmy Cooksey obtained a book called This is Karate, by Masutatsu Oyama. Together they practiced the techniques illustrated in the book in their garages with homemade heavy bags, macawara boards, hanging balls and other unique training aids. Led by Jack, who had some formal training, they sought techniques that had practical fighting application. Like all young, testosterone filled boys they often got in to fights and even gang fights in their rough city of Port Arthur, Texas. Their heroes back then were Bruce Lee, Chuck Norris, Bill Wallace, Mike Stone and Ed Parker. In addition they practiced Ninja skills like climbing buildings, fence walking, stealth hiding and all sorts of unusual and sometime dangerous endeavors at night while avoiding the police cruisers. When James got older his martial art experience was put on hold. He went to college and obtained three degrees – chemistry, biology and pharmacy. He also was a flight instructor, appliance repairman, a plumber and was skilled in all the building trades. When he got married, he and his wife Sherry felt something was missing from their lives and attended The Institute for Religious Development in Warwick, New York. Here, they spent many years absorbing and practicing an ancient teaching that had been lost to mankind. Part of this teaching was the practice of sacred dances that were found in remote monasteries. These dances, which they simply called "movements," were handed down from generation to generation, unchanged for thousands of years. When James and Sherry decided to start a family, they moved back to Texas and settled in the city of Bryan. Here, they were disappointed by the absence of spiritual practice they had known in New York. They realized that some aspects of martial art, especially forms, were "three centered activities" similar to the sacred movements they had practiced at the Institute. They wanted their children to experience the benefits of this type of activity. When their daughter Laura was twelve and their son Joey was nine, they enrolled them in a taekwondo school in Bryan. The school was affiliated with the American Taekwondo Association (ATA). After several months, their children were having so much fun, James and Sherry decided to join taekwondo also. James was forty-four and Sherry was forty-one. Because their children were two belts ahead of them, they helped their parents learn martial art. The Killingworth's became the first Black Belt family in their local association. When Laura and Joey went into high school they left their practice of martial art behind. Laura went into gymnastics and Joey went into baseball and football. James and Sherry continued their journey in taekwondo. They built their own dojang (place of formal exercise) in their back yard and practiced together on a regular basis. After a period of hesitation, they both decided to enter into competition. As they continued to ascend through Black Belt ranks, they both earned the title of World Champions. Sherry won two world titles and James won thirty-one Top Ten Medals and fifteen world titles. Sherry obtained the rank of Fourth Degree Black Belt and James was a Fifth Degree Black Belt. In James' final year of competition (2015), he swept his entire division (60-99 year olds). He won first place in all four events – forms, sparring, weapons and combat weapons. This earned him four world titles (gold medals) and the coveted Quadruple Crown. He was sixty-eight years old. Since they achieved all of their aims in martial art competition, they decided to retire. He and his wife still train together in their own dojang and are now training their grandson.
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