And so it begins...

FearlessFreep

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I've talked with my instructor the last few days. He said that he wants to test me for 1st Dan in about six months and will be spending the next week or evaluating me over the things we will test on so I have a basis of knowing what to work on and improve.

My younger daughter will also be testing for 1st Poom in about the same timeframe
 

terryl965

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Congrats FF and also to the young one. Make sure you take pics for all of us and if you need anything ask.
 

IcemanSK

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You're right. It begins now. Train hard, be consistant in your training & ask a lot of questions: of your instructor first & then the folks here. We'll help if we can. We're in your corner!
 

cali_tkdbruin

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Good for you Fearless! That's plenty of time for you and your daughter to prep for the test. It's great to have your daughter as a training partner, the 2 of you share something special in common, the MAs and TKD.

I did the same thing with my daughter a while back, and even now we still share that special bond in that we're both Taekwondo BBs. It's a family thing for us... :asian:
 

shesulsa

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Go, Freep! This will be a great process for you. Best to ya!
 

exile

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FearlessI'm in the same boat, so I feel your... um, pain? :wink1: I'm scheduled to test for shodan this June/July, and there is a huge amount of ground to cover. Just rememberas I'm sure I don't have to remind youthat the crucial ingredient is will, unrelenting will to learn and to do; and the second most important is paying attention to the details. It's going to be a long, hard late winter, spring and early summer for both of us... I won't say good luck; I much prefer the French exhortation, Soyez de bon courage!!
icon14.gif
 

arnisador

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Good luck! It's a good time to start ramping up your cardio if that's an issue for you...
 

Lisa

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Go forward and be Fearless! :D

...yeah...it was a sad attempt at levity...but..I couldn't resist.

Congrats and good luck!
 

terryl965

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So FF the date is coming nearer and are you still Testing? If so how did all the extra training help out? I would like to hear what you did prior to testing to really get ready.
 

tshadowchaser

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Only a few days left so forget about worrying and start to relax. If you are not ready I am sure your instructor will not have you test.
You have had 6 months to train and prepare for this so I am sure that the instructor has gone over all you will need to know. Take a deep breath and going the test knowing you are about to give it all you have and being positive that you can ace the test.
My best to you and your daughter
 
OP
F

FearlessFreep

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So FF the date is coming nearer and are you still Testing? If so how did all the extra training help out? I would like to hear what you did prior to testing to really get ready.

That's a complicated question...yes I am still testing, although it's been pushed back a week for scheduling reasons. We're going to have a ninth dan (Gm Yun), plus my instructor and several of his other black belt students are coming in who are not normally part of the school. A few testing for 2nd Dan and six of us testing for 1st Dan (or Poom where appropriate).

The test will start August 15th for a few hours in the evening and then pick up the morning of the 16th for a few more hours.

As for myself... well, it's kinda interesting. Master Chae has been rather oblique about the actual testing requirements. I mean, I know it involves Taeguek forms, Yun forms, Sparring, Hoshinsul and One-Step Sparring defenses and Breaking but I really don't know *what* it will entail for any of those arears; numbers of techniques, length of sparring, breaking targets,etc...

A few things he has said in the last few days help me understand his state of mind (I'm paraphrasing). First(in regards to technical proficiency): "I started testing you two months ago" Second (in regards to some gup testing I was helping with): "I know they can do what we do in class, I want to see what they [can] do when given something they haven't seen before" Third: "I don't have you[them] come before the [testing] board unless you can already it. It's a waste of my time and your money"

In other words, the test(s) doesn't seem to be about whether or not you can do the requirements for a pass/fail, but rather a chance to demonstrate what you've got under pressure to see where you are mentally and an evaluation of where you need to go forward. In other words, take everything you're training on and bring it to one point in time and show what you've got. You wouldn't be there if you didn't have the proficiency to execute the belt requirements, so this is going above and beyond to take a measure of yourself.

I've picked up a lot of this as much from helping Master Chae and his other instructors in testing lower gups as I have in actually asking him (because I have asked him and he won't answer :)

So, in one sense, I really don't have to worry about passing the test as I've already demonstrated what I need to in order to pass..no pressure.

On the *other* hand, as I said, the test is to throw stuff at you you're not ready for and see what you've got and part of that is to find your breaking point, mentally, emotionally, and physically.

So...I don't know what the sparring is going to be, but I know it's going to be long and continuous and against a bunch of black belts and just that part of the testing will be a hard workout, although I don't really know what to prepare for. Same with the hoshinsul/one-steps, I don't know what techniques I will be tested on; I know I will be in a circle of black belts who will take turns attacking me in random ways and I need to react on the spot, probably to attacks I've never seen before, a lot harder than normal drilling. etc...etc... I don't know what it will all entail, I just know it will be outside and beyond my 'comfort zone' of what I experience in normal training.

So, as I've said before, I don't really need to worry (too much) about passing the test, but I do need to worry about surviving it.

From this perspective, it's been a little difficult to prepare precisely for the test simply because in many ways I don't know what I'm preparing for, at least technically.

I've often remarked to myself and others that the test doesn't matter because the day before the test I'll be the same person as the day after the test so in a real-world sense, the process of the test doesn't really reflect who I am as a person. I'm starting to rethink that because as I go into this test not knowing what is in the test and yet knowing more about the purpose and goals of the test...I think I will learn a lot about myself; my strengths and weakness, my limits and my capabilities, when I come out.

So in a lot of ways, my preparation for the test has been as much emotional and mental as physical; in psyching myself up for it and learning about myself.

Now, from a physical standpoint, I have been preparing as well :)

A lot has been just strength and cardio, making sure I'm in good shape to survive/endure the test. I'll stop the strength work on Tuesday and work solely on cardio. I'm also working a lot on just repetitions of techniques, trying to get in several hundred kicks per leg per day against target paddles and shields. Also a lot more focus within techniques; when working forms or hoshinsul or kicking drills paying much more attention to precision, technique, power; more mental focus on the physical execution, taking nothing for granted in the technique. In addition, especially with th hoshinsul and one-step defense, just a lot of random drilling and experimenting and trying new thing to see what works and what doesn't, a lot of practice and analysis. Again, come Tuesday, I will stop being so hard and physical with technique and slow the contact down to focus much more on being precise in my forms and other techniques.

In other words, I'm doing a lot to prepare, but nothing special. Or rather, since a lot of the test I don't now the details on... there's not a lot of particular areas I can prepare for. Since the test seems to be a culmination of training to bring everything I've got together at one point in time to demonstrate who I am as a martial artist, to myself and others, physically,mentally and emotionally, most of my preparation has been simply raising my own game and challenging myself to be the best I can as a martial artist. Ironically, because of this, my 'preparation' for the test has made me focus more on the level of martial artist I want to be and has brought me to a higher level of knowledge and strength and skill which has nothing to do with what the actual test will encompass
 

tshadowchaser

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Because you already understand that the unexpected may well be on the test I think you will do just fine. Being able to think on your feet is an essential part of many tests both in the martial arts and in life.
Use your head and youll do just great
 
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