Aikido College Essay

Tell us about a talent, experience, contribution or personal quality you will bring to the University of California. *

As I watch my opponent pace back and forth, I steady myself, appear indifferent, and slow my breathing. Suddenly, he lunges, taking hold of my wrist so that I may not block his punch. I think, "Don't flinch! You've done this one hundred times before... ready... NOW!" Catching my opponent off guard, I lunge in and down. After a quick lift and pivot, it is over, and my opponent lies on his back with a familiar, dazed expression gracing his features. My test for a green belt in Aikido is completed, and I have prevailed.

Aikido is one of the foremost defensive martial arts. Instead of butting heads like goats in a contest of sheer strength, one uses the opponent's own strength against him. Rather than punching an opponent in the face, and possibly breaking one's knuckles in the process, one merely flows with the opponent's momentum, twisting their joints to the breaking point. Through Aikido, I have learned self-discipline, mental toughness, determination, and, most importantly, self-confidence. It is these characteristics that I will bring to the University of California, where they shall aid me in all my endeavors towards academic accomplishment.

Self-discipline is an important characteristic to...

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