What is your strength – Story of Okayo

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What is your strength – Story of Okayo

Ten-year-old Okayo, who lived in a small town in Japan, was very fond of learning Judo. But his parents did not allow him to learn Judo because of an accident in his childhood. Which cut off his left hand. But now he was growing up and his stubbornness was also increasing.

Eventually the parents had to bow down and they took Okayo to get admission at a famous martial arts master in the nearby city .

When the master saw Okayo, he wondered why this boy without a left hand wanted to learn judo?

He asked, “You do not have a left hand, so how will you compete with other boys.”

“It’s your job to tell me how to do that,” said Okayo. All I know is that I have to beat everyone and become a “Sensei” (master) one day.

The master was very impressed by his strong will power to learn and said, “Okay I will teach you but there is one condition, you will follow my every instruction and have firm faith in it.”

Okayo bowed his head before the master in agreement.

Next day, the  master started teaching Judo to about fifty students at once. Okayo was learning like other boys. But after a few days he noticed that master was teaching different tricks to other boys but he was still practicing the same kick that he had learned in the beginning .

He could not stop and asked the master, “You are teaching new things to other boys, but I am still practicing just that one kick.

Shouldn’t I learn more things?” Master said, “You just need to master this one kick” and he went ahead. Okayo was astonished but had complete faith in his master and started practicing again.

Two years passed in this way, but Okayo was practicing the same kick.

Once again, Okayo began to worry and asked his master, “Will I continue to do just this now and not learn other new techniques?”. Master said, “If you have faith in me then keep practicing.”  Okayo followed the master’s orders and continued to practice the same kick for the next 6 years without asking any question.

It had been eight years since everyone had been learning Judo when one day the Guru called all the disciples and said, “I have given you the knowledge I had to give you and now according to the tradition of the School, the best disciple will be selected through a competition. The victorious  disciple will be awarded the title of “Sensei”.

Competition started.

Master called Okayo to participate in his first match.

Okayo started fighting and to his surprise he won first two matches with great ease . The third match was a bit tougher , but after a few struggles the opponent turned his attention away for a few moments , Taking benefit of this opportunity, he deposited his perfect kick on the opponent and won the match .

Still in awe of his success , Okayo made his way to the finals .

This time the opponent was much more powerful, experienced and vast. Seeing it, it seemed that Okayo would not be able to stand in front of him even for a minute.

The match started, the opponent was getting heavy on Okayo, the referee proposed to stop the match and declare the opponent as the winner, but then master stopped him and said, “No, the match will be completed”.

Match started again.

The opponent was overconfident and was now undermining Okayo. And in this conceit he made a huge mistake, he dropped his guard!!

Taking advantage of this , Okyo used the kick he had practiced for eight years , with full force and accuracy , hit the opponent and smashed him to the ground . There was so much power in that kick that the opponent fainted there and Okayo was declared the winner.

After winning the match, Okayo asked the master, “Sensei, how did I win this competition by learning just one move?”

“You live for two reasons,” replied the Master. “First, you have mastered one of the hardest kicks in Judo that hardly anyone else in the world can hit with such skill, and second, there is only one way to avoid this kick i.e. by grabbing opponent’s left hand and dropping him on the ground.

Okayo understood that his biggest weakness had become his biggest strength.

Being human being means being imperfect. Imperfection is not bad in itself, bad is the way we deal with it.

If Okayo had wanted, he could have lived a handicapped life, crying about the absence of his left hand, but he never allowed himself to feel inferior because of this. He had a strong desire to make his dream come true and he fulfilled them.


No one is perfect in this world but we can convert our imperfections in to strength by strong desire and hard work.

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