I am pleased to present a guest post from my good friend, RoseAnne Mussar. She hails from Ottawa, Ontario, Canada and trains in Modern Arnis at the 6Tigers Academy in Barrhaven under Renshi Janet Heffernan. She also trains in the American Cane System, often traveling to New York for training.

“Aren’t you a little old for that?” was my sister’s reaction when I mentioned that I was starting karate lessons. And she had a good point. At 47, it was a little late for a Pudgy Middle-Aged Matron© to be starting in….well, let’s back it up a bit, shall we?

I may be middle-aged now, but I’ve always been pudgy (OK, fat). I was never athletic. Ever. When I was a kid, martial arts was that kung-fu stuff at the Saturday matinee, and gym class was an endlessly humiliating series of being picked last for the team. Oh, the memories.

Artwork by Peter Chiykowski

Artwork by Peter Chiykowski. Check out his online comic series at http://www.rockpapercynic.com

But life goes on and you meet a great guy and fall in love and get married and have two amazingly awesome kids who decide to try karate. So I watched my children do karate for five or six years, thinking “gee that looks like fun.”

And then it happened.

Around my 47th birthday, I signed up for a Women’s Self Defense course. As nervous as all get-out, I stepped onto the mats. I had the time of my life kicking pads, punching dummies, and applying devastating techniques to some poor guy in a red man suit. I had a blast, but more importantly, I realized that I could do this. Where do I sign up?

Karate was the obvious choice, but to be truthful, it was a bit of a rough start. A lot of the karate stuff was hard on my knees (I got my official osteoarthritis diagnosis a couple of years ago). I also tried Defendo for a while. I managed to get my Level 2 certification but seriously, what was I thinking?

However, the kids had started doing this funny little thing with sticks which kinda looked interesting.

So I picked up some sticks. Clouds parted. Scintillating beams of sunlight shone down. A heavenly choir of golden voices sang “this is what you want to do!” Where do I sign up?

Six years later, I’m still swinging the sticks and loving every minute of it. I love the physical and mental challenge of martial arts, especially with weapons. I love being stronger, healthier, and more confident. I love that I love being physically active- something I used to hate. I love that my husband Gary signed up too! Plus, I’ve picked up a couple of other arts: American Cane System, and sport whip cracking (yes it’s a thing). I may still be a Pudgy Middle-Aged Matron©, but I’m a PMAM who kicks ass!

It’s trite but true: the first step is often the hardest. And occasionally not in quite the right direction. But that’s perfectly OK. It’s never too late to take that step. So pick up those sticks and start swinging – see how amazing you can be!

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Are you interested in contributing a guest post to this blog?

Martial Arts topics are preferred. Please contact me at MasterBrian@bamboospiritmartialarts.com to express your interest and for further details. I’d like to hear from you!

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8 thoughts on “Never Too Late!

  • March 28, 2016 at 10:52 am
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    Yaaaaaaaaaaaaaay! So glad Ms. Mussar found her niche! I myself began Karate at age 44. So I totally understand. It’s an awesome time of life to begin ’cause the kiddos are getting independent 🙂

    Reply
    • March 28, 2016 at 11:38 am
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      Hey Joelle, thanks for commenting. Yes, she’s doing quite well and I’m looking forward to seeing her at her dojo in the near future!

      Reply
    • April 9, 2016 at 1:28 pm
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      Hi Joelle – sorry for not replying sooner. Thank you for your kind words. I always enjoy reading your comments on Jackie’s blog!

      Reply
  • April 9, 2016 at 10:30 am
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    Dear RoseAnne, if you are reading this, I just wanted to say how much I enjoyed your article! Sounds like you are having the time of your life. I really hope that others will read your post, and realise that as you say, it really is Never Too Late!

    Reply
    • April 9, 2016 at 1:29 pm
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      Hi Kai – thank you so much. I’m glad you enjoyed it.

      Reply
  • June 30, 2016 at 9:09 am
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    Congratulations, As my current Arnis Kali partner is a 61 years old lady, I totally agree with you. You all are inspiring.

    Reply
    • June 30, 2016 at 10:24 am
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      Thank you for reading this post and commenting. Long live the FMAs! 🙂

      Reply
    • June 30, 2016 at 12:10 pm
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      Hi Renato – thank you for your kind words. Have fun training!

      Reply

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