How many of your students actually compete on a regular basis?

msmitht

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Just curious. I have about 15 who compete regularly (local, state, qualifiers & Nationals). That's 15 out of 98.Most of them will go to a local tourney once or twice a year.
What percentage of your students compete on a regular basis?
 

bluekey88

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The school i attend us pretty large...200 or so students. Aside from several internal comps each year, only the competition team really competes regularly...that's about 12 students right now. We're currently in the recruitment process for next season. Obviously, our school is not mainly geared towards competition.

Peace,
erik
 

mango.man

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The school my daughter attends is pretty small. We currently have 11 students and all 11 compete every chance they get. But then we are a sport only school.
 

NPTKD

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most of them don't.... I have about 150 and only about 20 or so.. I really don't push it with my students. The sport side really isn't for everyone.
 

wade

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Small school, 30 full time students during the school year, September - June, 15 are on the competition team. They all compete all the time. Lewis Taekwondo, you can read about us in the USAT magazine about how we did at Nationals in Austin, Tx. During the summer the regular school shuts down and only the competition team trains. At the opening ceremonies we were the ones in the bright safety green t-shirts. We also are a sport school. Has been a varsity letter sport at the Scappoose High School since 1996. No, we are not for every one but then we don't claim to be.
 

Laurentkd

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Small school, 30 full time students during the school year, September - June, 15 are on the competition team. They all compete all the time. Lewis Taekwondo, you can read about us in the USAT magazine about how we did at Nationals in Austin, Tx. During the summer the regular school shuts down and only the competition team trains. At the opening ceremonies we were the ones in the bright safety green t-shirts. We also are a sport school. Has been a varsity letter sport at the Scappoose High School since 1996. No, we are not for every one but then we don't claim to be.


You can letter in TKD?? That is awesome! How did you manage that?? I would love to be able to do something like that!
 

ATC

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Our competitoin team members are the only ones that compete at both local and national tournaments. Everyone else only can complete at the local tournaments that we allow them to compete in. We have 15 on the competition team. We have about 150-200 students total. So about 11%.
 

NPTKD

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You know I got wrapped up in this last year. I had this understanding that all schools had 100's of students that compete. I spent alot of time trying to get my students to compete. But the more tournaments we went to the more of the same people we would see. So I think I'm not going to push so hard the tournament thing. I'll over it like I alway have but I think I will focus more on my school. This is a good topic..It lets others see what percent of students at other school compete. Thanks....
 

ATC

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You know I got wrapped up in this last year. I had this understanding that all schools had 100's of students that compete. I spent alot of time trying to get my students to compete. But the more tournaments we went to the more of the same people we would see. So I think I'm not going to push so hard the tournament thing. I'll over it like I alway have but I think I will focus more on my school. This is a good topic..It lets others see what percent of students at other school compete. Thanks....
The thing about competition is that if you have a bad experience, then you may quit your art altogether. If you force someone to compete that does not want to or is not ready, then if they get run over or hurt during the process they sometimes just quit. You don't want this to happen.

The people that want to compete and are ready are there just for that, and they enjoy it. Some people just don't want to compete. Other should not compete just because they are not ready for it.

We try to let the ones that are ready and willing start off with Poomsae (forms). It at least lets them get a feeling of all eyes one them and doing it under the pressure of competition.

However the worst thing that you can do is to let a person compete at an advanced belt level that has never competed before. This is in fighting only of course.

I once took a new black belt to a tournament because she showed heart in the dojang and wanted to compete. Well, I can tell you she got destroyed in her first match as she was bracketed with a fighter that had made the Jr. National team. She got killed 7-0 in about 18 seconds and took two vicious head shots in the process. Lucky she did not get KO'd but she was clearly shaken by it.

So my advice to all is to get in the ring by 7th or 6th Kup (Gup) so you build that experience and you are not overwhelmed once you reach and advanced rank.
 

IcemanSK

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The thing about competition is that if you have a bad experience, then you may quit your art altogether. If you force someone to compete that does not want to or is not ready, then if they get run over or hurt during the process they sometimes just quit. You don't want this to happen.

The people that want to compete and are ready are there just for that, and they enjoy it. Some people just don't want to compete. Other should not compete just because they are not ready for it.

We try to let the ones that are ready and willing start off with Poomsae (forms). It at least lets them get a feeling of all eyes one them and doing it under the pressure of competition.

However the worst thing that you can do is to let a person compete at an advanced belt level that has never competed before. This is in fighting only of course.

I once took a new black belt to a tournament because she showed heart in the dojang and wanted to compete. Well, I can tell you she got destroyed in her first match as she was bracketed with a fighter that had made the Jr. National team. She got killed 7-0 in about 18 seconds and took two vicious head shots in the process. Lucky she did not get KO'd but she was clearly shaken by it.

So my advice to all is to get in the ring by 7th or 6th Kup (Gup) so you build that experience and you are not overwhelmed once you reach and advanced rank.


Like ATC, I think the tournament process can be daunting for some students. I don't encourage tournament participation for a lot of reasons. Price being a large one. I have many folks that just can't afford to do them. Also, I've noticed that many kids get into MA because they don't "fit in" with the regular sports crowd at school. Those kids can be turned off by discovering that tournaments are just like the rest of the sports world they aren't a part of.

I make students aware of tournaments in the area, & prepare students who want to go. But it's not a focus of my school. It was a hard change to get used to for me. After spending a number of years in a kickboxing gym that produced world champions, I thought I'd spend a lot more time at tournaments.
 

NPTKD

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well I would never force or make it a requirement to go. I just enjoyed competing myself and wanted my students to have that feeling also, kind of what you want for your kids. But, I see it really isn't for everyone.
 

IcemanSK

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I don't want to imply in any way that tournaments are bad things. My involvement in tournaments as a judge have been quite positive. I was just pointing out that, as ATC said, they don't do the same thing for every student.
 

ATC

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Like ATC, I think the tournament process can be daunting for some students. I don't encourage tournament participation for a lot of reasons. Price being a large one. I have many folks that just can't afford to do them. Also, I've noticed that many kids get into MA because they don't "fit in" with the regular sports crowd at school. Those kids can be turned off by discovering that tournaments are just like the rest of the sports world they aren't a part of.

I make students aware of tournaments in the area, & prepare students who want to go. But it's not a focus of my school. It was a hard change to get used to for me. After spending a number of years in a kickboxing gym that produced world champions, I thought I'd spend a lot more time at tournaments.
All good points; Price is a big one. I have seen many people shell out the cost of the tournament, travel cost, hotel or lodging cost, and car rental, did not even mention food and other miscellaneous cost. Just to see little Billy lose his first match, and all this as a color belt.
 

jks9199

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Like ATC, I think the tournament process can be daunting for some students. I don't encourage tournament participation for a lot of reasons. Price being a large one. I have many folks that just can't afford to do them. Also, I've noticed that many kids get into MA because they don't "fit in" with the regular sports crowd at school. Those kids can be turned off by discovering that tournaments are just like the rest of the sports world they aren't a part of.

I make students aware of tournaments in the area, & prepare students who want to go. But it's not a focus of my school. It was a hard change to get used to for me. After spending a number of years in a kickboxing gym that produced world champions, I thought I'd spend a lot more time at tournaments.
Those are a couple of my issues with competitions in general, too. Even at $30 or $40 and staying within a reasonable couple of hours of driving -- it's too damn easy to end up barely warmed up and being done because of single eliminations. Which only gets more frustrating if you lost because of better gamesmanship, not better fighting. I can recall one tournament where it was clear that if you weren't from a certain set of schools -- you weren't winning.

Competition can be an important tool for students to experience a different form of pressure. But it's like a forge; with too much heat, too much pressure, it can destroy rather than build.
 

mango.man

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I recently added up the costs of competitions for my daughter over just the last 4 years and only for USAT events (Qualifiers, Nationals / Junior Olympics, US Opens etc). I calculated entry fees, hotels, transportation, food, gear / uniforms. This did not include training or state / local competitions, just getting to / from and competing in USAT events.

I do not travel as cheaply as I could, but I also do not stay in 5 star hotels and dine on caviar and champagne.

Grand total just under $18,000 in 4 years traveling to places like Austin, Detroit, Vegas, Portland, Colorado Springs, Atlanta, New Orleans, San Jose, Fresno, Anaheim and I am sure I have left 1 or 2 destinations off the list.

And the scary part is that TKD is one of the least expensive Olympic sports to participate in. If we were into competitive Gymnastics or Figure Skating etc I am sure that number would be at least 5 X greater.
 

wade

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Charles, you are so lucky. I've been doing this for so long I don't even want to think about how much money I've put out over the years. Oh well, the wife says I can stop as soon as I get tired of doing it and I will. Uh huh, I can quit anytime I want....................... But for now I'm still having fun so I guess I'll see you in Vegas at the Open.


This is Kara Marsh, 16/17 middle wgt black belt, grass roots division, Austin Tx. 2009. She won this match 14/13 and came home with a silver.


 
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wade

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Woo Hoo...... very nice. BTW, how did Sam do in Austin? Ya know, I think with players like these and our own attitudes about competition that we are never going to join the "OH NO, DON'T COMPETE CAUSE IT WILL RUIN TAEKWONDO AND IT'S NOT WHAT TAEKWONDO IS REALLY ALL ABOUT" group will we? I guess we could put cute little marshmallow pads on the hands and feet of our players and then forbid them to actually hit each other. This I think would make it more "traditional", don't you think? :) During down times at the school we actually put "you tube" on and sometimes watch "real" Taekwondo. Good grief....nuff said about that crap. As for how much it costs to compete, don't whine about it, just do it or don't. But don't use it as an excuse either. I've seen people pay $5 for a coffee at Starbucks and then whine when I charge $1 for a bottle of water at my school, sigh, you just can't win. As for tournaments being unfair, hell yeah they are!!!! But then so is life, you take what you get, you get out of it what you can and then you move on, that's life. Oh wait, unless it's too expensive of course, then you just choose not to play because it's safer. Umm hmmm............ Wonder how that's working for you?
As for all of you who send players to tournaments, who spend all that money and travel time just to have your player lose his/her first match out, well, thank you, your participation was appreciated. You don't think I haven't had that happen to some of my players? You bet your butt it did. But, we went back, we trained harder, we learned from our mistakes and then we went back into the ring again. I did it, my players are doing it now. If you give up you lose. If you come back and try again, and again and keep working at getting better, then win, lose or draw you still win. But hey, I'm sport TKD and this is just my opinion. Would it be safer to stay in my own school and never venture into the real world, oh hell yeah, is that for me or mine, nope. So, once again Charles, to you and to coaches and players like you, we'll be seeing you down the road, have a safe trip.
 

mango.man

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We had 3 players that went out in Texas after their first fight. Sam included. 1 was even last years JO Gold Medalist, last years US Open Silver and this years US Open Gold. Went out in Austin in her first fight.

Sam lost both her first fight in Jr and a couple days later her first fight in Sr. We keep at it though and we will most likely be in Vegas in Feb and Orlando next July with you and everyone else that is as crazy as you and I.

The 3 kids that were at this local event over the weekend are the same 3 that lost their first matches in Austin. Their goal was to work on the techniques that they failed to execute successfully in Austin. In Sam's case, that ax kick and spinning heel.

All 3 did great and won gold, which is nice but pretty much meaningless, because as we have discussed in another recent thread there is a huge difference in the level of competition at a local event vs a national event.

See you in Vegas in a few months and you still owe the beer this time. I have been waiting since San Jose 07.
 
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