Many people get into martial arts because a family member started training first. In this case, it’s usually a relative someone looks up to: an older sibling, a mother, or father. I know several people for whom the latter was the case. No one in my (immediate) family ever had an interest in martial arts, unfortunately. But I found other hobbies to share with them. My dad, for example, is an avid tennis player. He signed me up for lessons when I was a kid, taught me the finer points of the serve, and spend hours practicing with me on weekends when I played for my high school. Tennis was our thing. Every Father’s Day, I make a point to get my dad something tennis-related. Sometimes it’s just tennis balls; other times I get fancier with tennis books, racquet clips, or tennis clothing. This theme isn’t just important because Dad likes tennis – it’s a reminder of the connection we have through the sport. I know that for many of our readers, martial arts is the connection they have with their dad. This year, skip the ties and tools and fishing gear for Father’s Day. Give your dad a gift that’s a thank-you: for introducing you to your art, and sharing rides to the dojo. For not letting you quit when you thought you wanted to. For not letting you win in sparring, because he knew you could be so much better if you pushed yourself. For attending tournaments on the weekends, and for showing you what you could accomplish through martial arts, because he’d paved the way as a role model.