Your first year in the martial arts is an interesting time in terms of duality and navigating a new way of seeing and doing things.
On the one hand you are literally reprogramming and training your body in a new set of dynamics and movement- literally responding differently to stimuli that you have acted on your entire life.
Something is coming at your head, a falling or thrown object. Most would duck, cover, or shield the head with the hands.
A martial artist would use footwork to get out of the way.
*Natural* instincts become unnatural, and the unnatural movement of the martial arts becomes the new natural.
At the same time, the mind, rational as it is tries to analyze such movements to understand them- relate them and improve them.
Which is literally beyond impossible with only one year or less of martial arts training.
As a result the first year is VITAL in immersing oneself in the basics of the art- the kihon in the Japanese martial arts.
Drilling and practicing the kihon without waiver or question.