By 6th Degree Black Belt and Master Instructor Ms. Christa Boone
“If you love something, love it completely, cherish it, say it, but most importantly, show it.”
– R. Queen
I really love karate. Of course, I should as I am an instructor and school owner. But sometimes I think back to some of the significant experiences I have had during my karate career, and I am awed by the impact it has had on my life.
One of my favorite parts of being involved in karate is the “being active part.” To me being active includes not just the physical workout—which give me the health benefits of fitness and flexibility—but also the interaction with other people. It’s awesome to be around people who share many of your goals and attitudes. I have taken part in many student activities during my karate career, and one I will always remember is participating in the “Fun Run” that National Karate has sponsored in past years. The annual National Karate Fun Run was an event where NK students collected money for a sponsored charity and then ran or walked a 5 kilometer or a 1-mile course to earn the donations. At the time I was in track in college, so the fun run was a great chance for me to compete in a different setting. Every year I was amazed at how many students participated to support a charity. I was humbled to see the little kids managing to walk a mile and the less fit students completing the 5K. The pride and excitement everyone had after completing their goal taught me a lot about how important it is to finish.
“You don’t have to finish first to be your best. You just have to finish.”
This lesson is continually repeated as I take and teach karate classes at Albertville National Karate. Watching my students work and strive to be their best is exciting and gratifying. When I can help a young child with attention problems to stay on task more and more each week, I know that child is learning a lesson that will help for the rest of their life. Working with an older student to help them improve their balance and strength, makes me glad to know that they have less chance of falling or breaking bones and more chance of enjoying life as they age. Coaching teens who are focused on entering national competition and watching their self-esteem and physical ability soar is rewarding. I also learn from my students as they provide feedback and help me stay motivated to continue my own National Karate career.
I look back over my karate experience and see many parts of my life repeated and amplified as time goes on. Just like every karate student, I started with the basics. I went on to earn a black belt, and then went on to earn regional and national titles. Throughout this time, I have met many people who share my love of being physically and mentally active, my love of giving back to our community, and my love of karate. I am blessed to have the opportunity to meet so many people who have become friends and mentors, as well as students and pupils. Today, I can look forward to additional charity events as National Karate participates with the Feed My Starving Children organization. I have a chance to share giving to our community with a new group of students. Taking classes, participating in competitions, supporting charitable organizations with like-minded people allows me to love karate, cherish karate and to show and share that love with others.