In martial arts one element is often at the cornerstone of practice, respect. From bowing to titles to the shouts of yes “Sir,” “Sensei,” or “Ma’am,” respect is at the core. We respect our arts, our instructors, our fellow students, our dojo, or wherever we so train, we respect our weapons we train with, our uniforms, our belts… this builds character and honor.
Masters and instructors respect other styles masters and instructors, and all respect their students. We respect the blood and sweat and efforts our students put into each and every class. We respect their perseverance and dedication to their tutelage and growth in the martial arts.
Suffice it to say, within the martial arts, respect is a law!
Respect is everything in the martial arts world, it shows your character or lack thereof when meeting people from other arts and displays your growth as an individual in the arts. Proper bowing, titles, how one speaks all play into the show of respect for others, especially those of higher rank.
The first element a student should develop in the martial arts is respect and how to show it to others, and to have self-respect for themselves. Everything comes after respect!
Without respect, a student will be made to focus on that lacking aspect, whether through lessons, humility work, or similar means to develop such. If you lack respect in a dojo, kwoon, dojang, etc… you will spend your earliest lessons being taught proper respect, because it is paramount to the arts.
Respect requires that false ego and personal differences be set aside, this is sometimes easier said than done. Sometimes self-respect is lacking, but over time it can and is developed through classes and individual growth therein. In all cases, martial arts builds these things and find respect and self-respect as paramount attributes of the martial artist.