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Budotherapy or Therapy with Martial Arts

Discriminating Budotherapy from therapeutic martial arts

I want to draw a line between Budotherapy, the approach I present in my book by this name, and between therapeutic martial arts, or, how martial arts contribute to the mental health of trainees. The second is an area that has been extensively researched over the past twenty years. Although Budotherapy contains, naturally, all the benefits of the martial arts for mental health in itself (above an article detailing these benefits), it actually deals with what Funakoshi, the founder of modern karate aimed for: karate as a Way of life. That is, understanding through the body, mind and our feelings the unity that exists between karate (or other martial arts) and the struggles in life itself. In therapy, we develop and investigate this analogy between the warrior in the karate Way and the warrior in everyday life.

Both ways engage with developing one's compassion qualities: Internal strength, courage, deep wisdom, peacefulness, self-soothing, good heart, kindness and caring for oneself, others and the environment. This, together with the commitment of continuously learning the Way, and the inner work towards growth, liberation and reduction of suffering, is where we're aiming for. So, what Budotherapy adds to the tremendous benefits of the martial arts practice itself, is the emphasis on symbolism and analogy, and develops this through physical illustration of the transition between a state of stress, contraction and suffering, and between a sense of inner strength, freedom and acting from our wisdom. One way to conceptualize this, is through the expression: Embodied Compassion through the Martial Arts, as you can find in the work of Clapton and Hiskey in "Fierce compassion martial arts" in the UK. For example, if we would teach our patient one of the karate basic stances, in the first approach of promoting health through the martial arts, we can understand how this practice and its grounding quality strengthens the patient's stability, self-control and confidence. In Budotherapy, we will also add an investigation of the places where you need this stability in your life. What will be the same 'stance' for you, when you find yourself in the middle of a storm, struggling as a parent, spouse or at work. Hoping I managed to shed some light on this important and sometime confusing point. I attached below a link to a translation to English of the introduction of my article from 2005, where you can find,studies on the benefits of the martial arts for mental health. A link to my new book that presents and clarify the Budotherapy approach, and a link to Clapton & Hiskey FIERCE approach.. Gabo Weis Clapton & Hiskey "Fierce compassion martial arts" Archery and group therapy article from 2005… Budotherapy book on Amazon

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