Let’s rephrase the title of this page: this topic will talk about why you should NOT learn martial arts online. Curious now…? Continue reading an you will understand why.
The situation today
Let’s face it: nowadays you can basically learn everything online: cooking, painting, playing an instrument, speaking a new language… so why not extending the endless possibilities offered by the internet to the world of Martial Arts as well?
The truth about learning Online
Nobody denies the benefits of learning martial arts online: it’s free, you don’t have the pressure of a Master, you learn when you want, what you want -and again- it’s free.
I want to underline this reason twice because, although today the offer of styles to study is virtually endless, it’s also true that a monthly fee, combined with the time spent to go to that dojo / gym rather than going to another, may limit some martial artist to be constant in learning.
Learn Martial Arts online: the Future
Let’s now put this topic to its extremes: what if one day (as it may happen soon, considering how fast technology is going today) everything will be taught on-line and available on the internet and only through it? You may say:
“who cares, as long as my learning needs are satisfied, I don’t wanna waste my time knowing whether it’s a real monk or a video on my laptop teaching me”.
I respect your point of view, but there is something that an “old school” learning won’t ever give you, compared to a virtual one. In fact, talking to extremes, what would be the difference between training in a monastery in China for three months, and investing the same amount of time learning martial arts online (via live classes or by watching pre-recorded videos)?
Learning Martial Arts in a real Dojo, with real people, will give you something that online learning won’t ever give you, plus:
- precision in learning: a real Master will correct you and, above all, a real Master will learn to know you deeper than any virtual machine out there: time spent together with your Master is a priceless time, no matter how hard it could be.
- hard training: you will be pushed to the limits set by your Master / Sensei, not yours.
- ability to follow orders. “Learn to obey and you’ll learn to command” Thales one said. Internet won’t ever tell you “it’s the wrong way” or “hey, you, “take that group and follow this order”. Because of this reason, it’s clear to everyone that military call-up won’t ever change as -trust me- you won’t ever enroll in the Army as an online course, made for those who want the “lite version” of it: you need to be there, you need to be part of a mission, you need to live the good and the bad part of training with other real people.
- discipline: the day you don’t want to train, you simply turn off your computer, if you decide to learn martial arts online. Real training does not allow this, because real training means also self denial: wake up early to train -not train when you naturally wake up-, train everyday -not when it fits your schedule-, and last but not least, train whatever your Master/Sensei says -not just what you want to learn-.
- human interaction. You can have a taste of this lack of human interaction on dating sites (this just wants to be an example, and the analogy fits perfectly to the purpose of this article): you may find the perfect partner, but when meeting on person it may not be what you expected. Maybe not the very first few days, but long time commitment will be inevitably affected. Same way you may engage in learning martial arts online for a long time, but at the end of the day what kind of interaction could you possibly nurture?
Okay, in the end It’s true that you may still become a Martial Arts Master, even if you learn martial arts online, but your training would lack few key elements that, combined together, will lead you to understand and fully embrace the way of the warrior.
We really hope this would convince you that old-school martial arts training is still the best way to uplift to higher goals not only your martial skills, but also your spirit, and if you think this page is a contradiction because Martial Arts Explained is a website that offers videos alongside with articles, please consider that our aim is to inspire your martial arts dreams, not to dream in your place: we want to give you a taste of martial arts to the best of our capabilities and knowledge, but in the end martial arts is still fighting on the battlefield, not online.