Direction Wanted

VectorCheck

Not Sure Where I Am Going

A very common expression in the Air Force is “Vector Check”. As those of you who took physics or were in the Air Force know, it means getting someone else to tell you were you are headed. In a plane you might ask for a vector check to make sure you are going where you wanted or it is often used in phrases like “Someone needs to sit him down and give him a vector check.” in which case it is referring to adjusting someone’s current path to make them better.

What I would like tonight is a vector check from the many people who read this site. It is you after all who I am writing for, so I would like to go in a direction that you too would enjoy. If you don’t normally comment, this is a great chance to start getting more content that you want.

Where I Think I am Going

Recently my focus has been on adding more and more videos detailing various techniques and to fill in a lot of the gaps on this site in terms of ground fighting. I have added a handful of lifestyle articles on conditioning and dieting along with some philosophy posts. As the days go by I see this site being transformed into less of a karate site and more of a “Warrior Lifestyle” website. That is something I enjoy and hope many of the traditional martial artists who read this find value in.

Most recently I started a forum for this site to give readers a way to interact with each other and to pool our collective knowledge together. It is still new and growing slowly but already full of amazing people and ideas. What is interesting is that the posts are extremely varied and include lots of stuff on workout plans, good martial arts movies, and fighting techniques. This reinforces my belief that OKI is becoming about the warrior lifestyle and that is what people want to see more of!

Week Off

As many have seen over the years, I am pretty busy as a full-time student at a military school and will have weeks where I post like crazy and other weeks where I disappear because of military stuff. I have one  week of break coming up and will have a lot of time to ideally finish one of a handful of projects I have for this site. Trouble is, I don’t know what to tackle first!

Here is a list of some of the options:

Dictionary of Japanese Martial Arts Terms

Last year I started a project to translate 50+ pages of Japanese terms into English. Back then this site was far more focused on Okinawan Karate-do and I thought it would be very useful to give people a way to look up any terms on the site they did not know or to provide access to the Japanese terms of things karateka may have learned in class, but did not know the name of.

This list has everything from techniques, to teachers, to Okinawan sayings. With another 10-15 hours of work I could have the list finished and published on here into a few shorter posts along with a download of the complete list for your personal use. The list would be free to use/redistribute/share and would require a few revisions to get it perfect.

If this is something you would find useful to your studies, let me know below.

E-Book

A long time goal of mine has been to publish an e-book (or a bunch if it is successful) to provide a much longer means of discussing the martial arts. While I enjoy posting these longer articles (compared to facebook status updates or tweets), they rarely cover a subject completely. A few of the topics I have considered exploring are:

  • Opening Your Own Dojo
  • Common Questions About Karate
  • Basics Everyone Should Know

I am very open to any topic really, as long as I feel like I can do it justice. If you would be interested in a 20-30 page E-book, let me know below and be sure to include the topic you want to hear about (anything is fair game).

Online Training System

One of the coolest projects I have been playing around with is the ability to convert a large part of this site into “courses”. I would take all of the requirements for a novice student and lump them into sequential lessons. The format of my articles would stay very similar to how they are now, but at the end of every post would be the option to take a multiple choice quiz (or ideally answer an open ended question) and then have the lesson marked as completed (provided you pass the quiz).

Users who choose to make an account (same one as the forum) would be able to track which lessons they have completed and there would be some cool badges/leaderboards to show off how much you have learned on this site. If you are the average reader and don’t care to try this out – you would be able to read everything just like normal and forgo the quiz.

This is not meant to become an online course in karate but rather a way of tracking your learning from this site and a way for me to see who the most involved readers are and focus new articles on what they want to learn.

While this is definitely the idea I am most excited to do (and will likely do as I work towards my 5th Dan), it requires a $100 investment in software to get it up and running. I am more than willing to put the money into this project, but would want to know there are at least a few people excited to use it first.

If you would use this type of software – please let me know below because I think it would provide a unique, free, experience to the martial arts world!

More Videos

My final idea that I could work on during my week off is more videos. This site has definitely sparked a large interest in the arts within me and I enjoy creating videos, pictures, and a site that sometimes feels more like art and less like a site you read. I won’t have access to a gym, but would be willing and able to create a large collection of videos covering more techniques, katas, and even some conversational thoughts on philosophy.

Sound like something you want? As always, let me know below.

Second Call for a Vector Check

If you enjoy this site and have benefited from its growth and continued commitment to providing as much free resources to the martial arts community as we (Noah and the other guest writers deserve some credit here too), please give me some feedback below so that I can make the most of my time on break and give you some more of what you really want!

By KruczekKruczek on FacebookKruczek on Google+Kruczek on Twitter Visit author's website

Theodore Kruczek is the founder and head writer of the Okinawan Karate-do Institute. He is a 4th Degree Black Belt in Okinawan Shorin-ryu with more than 14 years of experience. This site was created as his way of both teaching his own Karate and learning about others.

Comments (5)

  1. I do like the videos you post. I like the warrior-lifestyle based idea, but hope you don’t entirely abandon the traditional “karate-ness” of the site.

    Also, I would like your terminology list when it’s ready.

    As for the online novice courses–it’s a good idea. I was getting ready to take advantage of similar courses on the TaeKwonWoo website and then it went to a one time $250 fee. He’s a good instructor though and numerous YouTube instructional videos if you ever decide to check him out

  2. I agree with Darlene. I enjoy the videos. I have/had my own terminology list for my style. My instructors handed it out. I am just your average reader though. Not interest in courses. It does sound like a neat idea though. I enjoy going to You Tube and watching instructional videos as well.

  3. Wanted to clarify the warrior lifestyle comment. I am referring to a blend of American and Japanese Budo. Budo being “the way/art of the fighting”. I don’t mean for this site to have less karate stuff, I just don’t feel the need to box myself in with a specific style. A quality Tae Kwon Do move would have been adopted by the Okinawan Masters, because it is a quality move. So while not everything I post will fall neatly under Okinawan Karate, it will fall under the Okinawan master’s mindset of evolving karate to be the best defense art it can be.

  4. Not to give you more work to do in your free time, but I’d be really interested in an ebook on Opening a Dojo. In this day and age I think teaching karate commercially is less and less appealing to people, and yet the martial arts are still very popular. I think you have a whole host of experience teaching and starting clubs in various places that would be really useful for a lot of people out there.

  5. An e-book is a great ideal. I haven’t had a whole lot of time to read through all the post. But what I have read, is great. I think you are on the right path with the various topics. One thing most people don’t realize is traditional martial arts when taught properly is a very practical self-defense. Taught to be devastating and not a sport or game to play for points. Even MMA as tough as that is, with some amazing fighter not to be underestimated, it still has rules. Thank you for your time. Sincerely yours in Karate Do.

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