Plight of the small guy

A genetic inferior trying to enter a field swarming with natural athletes and tough guys is likely to be underestimated, ridiculed, and abused (the very things he was trying to escape by taking up martial arts, sports, etc.). This is especially cruel because it is the weaker people who need physical training the most. I experienced this in my weight training, when complete strangers, who themselves were beginners or mediocrities, would authoritatively instruct me not to squat “heavy” weights because I might hurt myself. This was after seven years of hardcore training.

Some martial arts masters were small and weak when younger (Kano, Ueshiba, Bruce Lee, Helio Gracie…) so at least it is possible for a smaller person to become a martial artist. Granted, these men had exceptional traits such as intelligence, desire, and character.

Admittedly, some fighters–probably most–were physically superior to begin with (Musashi, Gama, Mike Tyson, Sonny Liston, Muhammad Ali, George Foreman, Rikidozan…).

From my experience, the physically blessed tend to be easygoing, less educated, less ambitious, less “intense”, more “realistic”, and more accepting of the limitations of aging. Having enjoyed the advantages of strength, health, and attractiveness in their youth, they usually need not desperately struggle and fight for basic respect or freedom from abuse.

Most of my “advantages” (if i can call them that) are nonphysical: desire, mental sharpness, hunger for knowledge, stubbornness, and absence of fear. My only physical advantage is the flexibility I have from the TKD I took in my childhood.

So, I am back to the old question: how do I survive–and, dare I think it, thrive?–in a world of bigger and stronger men? I must be humble without being a worm, never compare myself to others, only try to be better than I was the day before, not care what others think of me, be aware of my physical limitations, and give 100% every single day until I die.


4 thoughts on “Plight of the small guy

    1. mindlikeemptyspace Post author

      Yes, in that respect our situations are somewhat similar. Thank you for the comment. I think it is great that you are learning Arnis (from the tiny bit of it I learned, I think it’s an awesome and beautiful art). I am sure we can gain from the martial arts what we put into them. Best of luck in the martial arts.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s