Stuart Norris - Yellow belt grading

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Almost three years ago I received a call from my instructor Corey asking if I’d like to have a complimentary lesson with him. Almost three years ago I had my mind blown away. I’d just witnessed someone moving in a way I’d never seen before and carry himself with a confidence and humbleness I only ever dreamed of having. I never realised that along the way I’d stop dreaming and start acting to become the person I always wanted to be.

I remember early last year Corey told me that he believed that I was ready and that this would be the year I would start my yellow belt journey. I had a lot of doubts about myself at the time but after a lesson with Josh Grimsey I was told that after seeing me train he agreed with Corey that this would be the year to start.

Now that a decision had been made that I would start towards my yellow belt, my instructors Corey and Nick informed me that I was invited to Fight group and that this would be a perfect first step. As always they were right. Fight group gave me the believably I needed in my Arakan to make it real and had me moving with a ferocity I’d never known I was able to achieve. It also introduced me to a lot of the students I would be joining in the following yellow belt seminars as coming from Ipswich and training in Brisbane I’d had next to no exposure to any of the Gold Coast students and instructors.

Then came the yellow belt seminars. Four or five weeks in I told my instructors I was becoming frustrated with myself. Their response was an ominous laughter accompanied with a “you think you’re frustrated now, just wait.” Again they were right. This past year’s training has been filled with frustration, pain and exhaustion all of which I needed to face and overcome if I was going to move forward. So I pushed myself as hard as I could and towards the end all my frustrations melted away, I was eager to face any pain and my exhaustion became my own reward for how hard I was working.

My grading came and I gave everything I could and more and though I feared failing I believed I could pass the grading more. I’d trained hard and I wanted to make my instructors proud because they believed in me and I wanted to prove to Rob that I was ready for this. I pulled through and passed my grading. A couple of hours later I found myself driving back home with the biggest grin on my face and feeling like I’d been hit by a train. It was one of the best feelings ever.

I wanted to thank all my instructors for knowing how hard to push me and for supporting me through this experience and Rob for showing me how much I’m capable of when pushed to my limits. This has been one of the most enjoyable experiences of my life and it’s amazing to know that I’ve only just scratched the surface of what there is to learn and that the limits of how far I can push myself will only continue to grow. I look forward to training harder every day.

I have been doing Arakan regularly since 2006, and I originally joined out of a starry-eyed idea of martial arts after viewing far too many movies. 

The interesting thing is that while the fighting system is absolutely amazing, the gains I have made in other areas of my life have actually overshadowed the technical skills I have been taught. I've now been committed to Arakan longer than anything I've done in my life, (other than my marriage!), and it's certainly not because I have aspirations to become a professional cage fighter or something.

I cannot emphasise enough what it is like to regularly be around positive, motivated, and success orientated people. This extends from the instructors all the way down to the students.

These are people who live highly disciplined lives day in and day out and have strong character and convictions. Over a period of time I've noticed that my language, my outlook on life, and the way that I interact with others has changed. Problems now become challenges to be overcome, and I now have a very large network of friends that I was certainly missing before. 

People ask my what Arakan is like, and why they should do it. It's extremely difficult to summarise, and I just tell them that it's the best thing I've ever done. Our whole family trains, and my children have been learning since they were 3 years old. 
Becoming fighting fit is great, but becoming a better human being is awesome. 


Steve Gregory

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New training options available via Skype, Zoom and Facetime

When ‘life happens’, it is an opportunity to rise up and show our strength and courage. With the recent pandemic hitting our shores, it meant some changes needed to happen with training, whilst conforming with the strict government regulations and hygiene protocols.

With our wellbeing and health being highlighted and taking precedence in most people’s lives, we felt it more important than ever before to help keep our members training. Numerous studies have shown that physical activity is linked to boosting our immune system as well as maintain physical and mental wellbeing.



Mental Wellbeing and Support During the Global Pandemic

As global citizens, we have all been adversely affected by the COVID-19 Pandemic. This might just be to our day-to-day socio-occupational routines and training regimes but most likely than not, it has affected our sense of security and certainty about the future to some extent. For some, it can be hard not to worry what the Pandemic and its socio-economic impacts can mean for ourselves, our families, friends and communities.