"I never told you that you wouldn't get hit."
This was a passing comment from a sensei at a recent seminar I attended at another dojo. I knew what he said was valid, and have thought about it before, but it resonated with me this time more than ever. In our style of jiu-jitsu we are taught to immediately move in towards our opponent, so the risk of getting hit--even while blocking--is definitely there.
"I rather take 40 per cent going in and then give 100," explained the instructor. "And the day you aren't afraid is the day you really get hurt."
During the two-hour session we learned and practiced many solid techniques, from joint locks to punch counters. But it was the words such as those above that made the bigger impact on me.
Another comment had to do with the practical nature of low kicks. "Up high is fine for tournaments and practice, but on the street it's foolish." This, too, I've heard before (even in the writings of Bruce Lee), however, there are many respectable individuals who disagree that I've met as well.
Regardless, sometimes it's the little comments that make one really think.