beaux (60)

Uniform Etiquette

Image2.gifHow to fold, and put on your uniform:

In martial arts -- there are traditions and rituals associated with the wearing, and tying of the belt and the uniform.  There are many reasons stated from different instructors, master’s and sensei about how these traditions have evolved.   It is, in my mind, all about mindfulness.  It is a practice which reminds us that we are entering and leaving a place, a dojang, where the realities of everyday life can be set aside, and a focus upon the person’s physic

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Tia's Living Heroes

3820653813?profile=originalLiving Heroes

Michelle Powell - My Mom is the strongest and bravest person I know.  She has chosen her own path even though it’s been hard, faced loss with grace, stood back when I need to stand on my own and been beside me when I needed it.  She is an amazing parent and human. I hope I am a person she can always be proud of even on my worst days.

Kim Wheeler - Kim taught me that it’s never too late to decide what you really want in this life no matter what other people may expect from you or what

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3820654840?profile=original1.What are my goals upon having reached black belt for my future training and learning?

In the future, I hope to continue increasing my flexibility, confidence, and strength all of which martial arts has helped with but I always want to improve. I have always had problems with my flexibility, but I would like to get better at it. Confidence will come with age and experience and strength will come by doing more Martial Arts and other physical activities. I think the most honest answer for me is th

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Living Hero

#5. Bill Nye


I remember as a kid always watching Bill Nye, “the science guy” and being fascinated by the show. I see now how corny it was, but that was not really the point. It got me interested in science and interesting things. As a kid

, I preferred to watch science shows over Cartoon Network.  Now that I am older, I appreciate a whole different side to him. These days he is focusing on helping the greater community and trying to educate the older generation about real problems in our world and

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My Living Heroes


#4. Charlie Jabaley

Unlike the other three heroes I mentioned, Charlie is someone that I don't personally know but I still think he is an inspirational person. Charlie Jabaley spent most of his life pursuing his job and making money by creating a bus

iness in the music industry, but he was overweight. It started in high school until he reached his heaviest weight of 304 pounds. Charlie had a dream of becoming an athlete so at the age of 28, he quit his job and decided to become healthier. So far,

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Living Hero #1

3820653813?profile=original#1. Liana Green

Liana Green was my high school advisor for many years and I would consider her a good friend and mentor to me. Liana is passionate about things that she likes to do. Two of her passions are music and rock climbing. She led the 


music program at school and played several instruments professionally. I participated in a few of her music classes and her rock climbing classes. I think she made me a better person and she always challenged me to be better. Liana helped me become who I am

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Living Hero #2

3820653813?profile=original#2. Andy Smallman

Andy Smallman was the director of the school that I went to for high school and I can honestly say that he is one of the people that has helped shape me for the person I am today. I am grateful to get to know him and continue to know him. He also taught some of my favorite classes over the years like Band of Brothers and Developmental Theory. One reason I really liked his classes was because of the way he taught it. Band of Brothers is a TV show about the 101st airborne division

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This video shows exactly why I teach, rather we teach, Bully prevention at MIMA --   We have literally taught hundreds of hours, mostly unpaid to kids from all over the greater Seattle area.  We teach not only the target, but also the kids who bully about tolerance and respect for others and self, and perhaps most importantly, we teach bystanders how to handle it.


We teach kids, that they have power, and how to use it.   And sometimes that means getting help, the thing that often requires th

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Yes, we can.


About the Author:

MeLisa Strongheart is a Master Instructor and co-owner at Mercer Island Martial Arts (MIMA), located on Mercer Island very between Bellevue and Seattle in Washington since 1997.  MIMA's curriculum is intentionally designed to build fitness, flexibility, self-defense, as well as to create a milieu which engenders physiological growth, respect, courage, and community activism and leadership.   

MIMA has programs for families to practice side by side, as well as adult, teen,

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3820646542?profile=originalA black belt is automatically put into a leadership position upon donning the belt.   We find this is a transition, that is shocking, without having first spent meaningful time practicing, and experiencing what it is like.

 It will still be different upon becoming a black belt, but the practice will make it easier —less culture shock, if you will.  It helps also in the passing on of the traditions, and techniques of martial arts is a skill in itself.   And we believe that it is one of the resp

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Recommendation for Ariel

When Ariel asked me to write a recommendation for his black belt I of course said yes, then thought now what do I say!Ariel is one of those quiet leaders on the floor. He was always ready to give it his all in class. I never saw him get flustered or upset no matter what we were doing. His leadership is in the attention to detail, the ever unflappable demeanor, all the while juggling a busy work and family schedule.
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My Heros

Hero.jpg?width=215My first hero is my Dad.  He has taught me so many things and doesn't even know it.  He is selfless, kind, caring, friendly and all around great person.  He retired early to help take care of his oldest grandchild and now he and my mom are taking care of 6 grandchildren while my brother, sister-in-law, wife and myself go to work.  He takes care of everyone even while he is sick himself.  You put him in a room of strangers and he'll make at least one new friend in the first 5 minutes.  He taught

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How about give someone an extraordinary experience with us?

Get it Here


Everyday we will put our uniforms on, we plan, we train, and ready ourselves in order to give everyone who comes in to our school, something extraordinary.

Sometimes that is being there to motivate to get on that mat again, to move, to kick, to try something new.   And each day things get a little better, faster, more flexible, stronger.   Becoming more confident.  The kind of confidence that comes from actual achievement

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First I want to apologize for not being able to make it to this HUGE day in all of your journeys. Second and most importantly I want to send my congratulations to the newest members of a very important and elite family. This marks a great achievement in your journey whilst also marking the beginning of a new and very exciting chapter of your story! Make it a great one and I hope to see you all soon so that I may properly congratulate you in person.Hope you are blessed,Thornton-Jack
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The Washington Trial Association or WTA is a local organization which promotes hiking and protecting the wilderness areas which surround us here in the PNW. My family has supported the group for a long time with donations and taking part in the yearly Hike-A-Thon that takes place each August. 3820647032?profile=originalFor my black belt community service project, Rosie and I took part in one of the weekend work parties. The WTA has regular work parties that rebuild trails which are in need of repair or build out new trial

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