Martial arts is a lifetime commitment for me. Currently, I hold a fourth degree black belt in TaeKwon Do under Master Anthony D'Amico (Dartmouth, MA), and second degree black belt in Seido Karate under Kyoshi Nancy Lanoue (Chicago, IL). I studied Yang Style Long Form Tai Chi Chuan with Andrew Heckert (Philadelphia, PA) for about four years. I also study boxing, escrima, and submission fighting with Dan Moore (Pittsburgh, PA). I also am the instructor of Pittsburgh Seido Karate, a dedicated group of martial artists in the CMU community.
I have had the opportunity to meet many black belts in my years of training. I began to wonder if their training experiences were similar to mine, and what wearing a black belt signified to them. To understand more, I began to interview other black belts that I met on these topics. I'm in the process of compiling the interim findings into a short article, and after that, hope to edit a set of essays for a book. The experiences are rich and diverse, and I want to share them with a larger audience.
Copyright 2006 Jodi Forlizzi.