Making note of my “glows and grows” in karate is one of my favourite habits for self-reflection and feedback.

Have you heard of this? If you haven’t, let me explain. The concept is simple.

Glow = something you’ve done well


Grow = something that needs improvement

Here’s how you can use it to improve at karate:

At the end of your next training session, pull out a piece of paper and a pen. Write down some glows and grows. The number of each doesn’t matter so much. You could do one glow and one grow. Or two of each. Whatever you like. The important point is to do it.

For example:

Glow: I put in a lot of effort today, and worked up a really good sweat.

Grow: I didn’t get low enough in my stances. My muscles were too tight, and I was feeling inflexible.

The glow reminds you of what you’re doing well, and the grow offers a way to move forward. You can then take that grow and reframe it into an action that you will take:

“I didn’t get low enough in my stances. My muscles were too tight.”

then becomes

“Every day I will take 10 minutes to stretch and practise my stances.”

This is such an awesome little technique, because it increases our feelings of confidence, but also prevents us from stagnating. If we just focused on what we did well, without considering areas that need improvement, we could end up stalling our progress. Making note of our grows keeps us moving forward, which is exactly what we need to do if we want to improve at karate.

So try this: after your next training session or tournament, write down your glows and grows. And then once you’ve done that, write down what actions you will take to improve. And then do them.

What are your glows and grows for karate this year? What did you do well? What areas could you work on next year? And what WILL you do to continue to grow?

Recommended Resources

You’re reading Using Glows & Grows to Get Better at Karate by Sabrina Bliem, originally posted on The Karate Shrimp. If you’ve enjoyed this post, be sure to follow The Karate Shrimp on YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram!