Started in old style jiujitsu.
Moved to soCal and traded time for training in Kempo karate. I was told that jiujitsu was outdated and two of the blackbelts showed me that their way worked....STupid me, I fell for the throw a punch at my face routine so of course their stuff worked. STayed seven years in kempo and goju-ryu, and shotokan. Did really good in tournaments.
Met Bruce Lee in the mid-60's, he was the only one who could hit me at will after he called the hit and which limb he was going to hit me with then do it in a matter of seconds.
I went through some mental gymnastics about how I wasted my time in pursuing all these martial arts and being told how great their school was when one individual could tear me apart.
I learned a little while from Bruce, but I joined up to spend a tour in southeast Asia care of Uncle Sam. I did what he suggested during that time..."discard what is not useful to you and keep what you can simply and effeciently apply."
I lived with that, came back to the states and tried what I kept against TKD, HKD, JKD, judo, kickboxing, contact martial arts, Shoriniji Kempo, etc.., etc...and I am quite happy...I got to the point that others asked me to teach them...I formed up a club and have taught some 500 individuals in self-defense classes and am happy to report that many have successfully defended themselves.
My biggest challenge now is teaching my daughter who is 14 years old and she has already had to defend herself against larger and more experienced individuals several times and she has won. I hope she will continue....I do not teach formally with her...we wrestle and box every night when we roughhouse...she's getting pretty good.
My personal challenge at age 52 is to learn the art of gunfoo...I have just begun to learn the use of handguns for self-defense...I prefer long guns, but they don't conceal as easily.