Word of the Month: Confidence

Confidence is believing in yourself. It is a crucial part of every person’s character development, and a key building block for a happy, successful life. At Douvris Martial Arts we believe that with the right approach to teaching karate, everyone can increase their confidence.

As Sensei Cody Diesbourg explains, every new member that walks through our doors shows confidence. “Whether they’re a little bit uncomfortable or nervous about starting, they’re showing confidence just by coming into the dojo.”


That feeling of being slightly uncomfortable in a new situation or when learning a new skill, it turns out, is what helps us grow and become more confident. “Whether or not you excel at it right away,” Sensei Cody says, “or there’s something for you to work on, you can build that skill – on your own or with other people – and actually come back and try it again and show how much confidence you’ve gained just by practicing.”

Our curriculum is designed to put students in situations that are just a little outside their comfort zone on a regular basis, so they are constantly working on their skills. It doesn’t take very long for them to start showing signs of increased confidence – they stand up tall, their shoulders are straight, they look you in the eye as they talk to you. These are all habits we encourage, along with the ability to speak clearly and loudly enough for the whole group to hear.

And when they are ready for a bigger challenge, we put our more advanced students in charge of teaching lower belts some of the techniques they know. Teaching experience gives our students a great boost in confidence, but it also makes them realize that they, in turn, can help younger or less experienced students gain confidence with the right teaching techniques and positive reinforcement.

“There are so many great cases here where we’ve seen our students become teachers and even become leaders – not just here at the dojo, but in their outside life as well, at school, at work – we have a lot of members, and a lot of younger members who seem older just because of their confidence and their maturity, taking it out of the dojo and basically showing everyone out there how confident they can be,” Sensei Cody says.