A lot of guys never bow in and out of class. They walk in late, mouth off, their manners are poor, their moral ethics are poor, their discipline is piss poor. The respect part, (Wai, Shaking Hands, High Five, Telling Your Name), is important. You guys are sweating together. I want to know who I’m sweating with!
The respect factor is whe Wai and the bowing. The bowing is more traditional Japanese, but I try to keep that for all my guys so they at least have the respect factor. We don’t have belts, we wear shorts & sweats, we play loud music and train hard, but we must keep the respect and pass it on to the new generation.
I used to be the new generation, but now I’m old. It’s weird. When I go to Japan, the place where all of the respect is, you walk in the door, stop and bow. Now some walk in and wave their hand and keep talking. For some, the respect factor has really changed.
I see a lot of this in mixed martial arts because they see Tito Ortiz and some other guys with the Bad Boy image. If you really get to know Tito, he’s not really like that. He’s a little cocky, but it’s for the hype of the media, and that’s what they need. Phil Baroni is the same way. He’s kind of crazy, lol, but, once you sit down and talk to him, he’s not really that way. People see the image on TV and love pro wrestling and that kind of attitude, so it tends to come out and the young people see this and that’s how they act. That’s not what it’s about.
It’s about respect, and it’s very important!