When my daughter joined the Pennsylvania Shotokan Karate Club, I knew that she would benefit from the physical demands of the martial arts. What I didn’t quite realize, was the extent to which she would benefit personally. Sensei Baldis’ disciplined approach focuses on building not only his students’ physical strength and martial arts skills but also their mental strength and personal integrity. The students are well mannered, they are taught to be respectful of themselves and others. When students forget a move, they are encouraged to rely on themselves. They are taught to stand strong, focus – and are usually rewarded with the satisfaction of knowing they figured it out on their own. My daughter feels tremendous pride and self confidence as she progresses through the ranks. Her self esteem is buoyed knowing that she has put forth her best effort – for a first grader, this type of experience is invaluable.