Losing

wolf30

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Well I just suffered another pathetic lost at the hands of a guy I should have beaten at a tournament today. I once again felt like I couldn't breathe when wearing the helmet and mouth guard. As soon as the match was over I was breathing so wearily. It was only 2 mins! I've jogged on the treadmill for 30min straight without rest. I couldn't believe this, I'm been doing a lot of cardio such as jogging on the treadmill, etc but when I fought it was as if I was under water. Same thing happened last month at another tournament.

I've faced tougher guys before and beaten them but yet I constantly lose to these guys that I should have beaten at tournaments. Its like my whole body doesn't want to respond to me, I lose my speed completely, power, everything. Anyways I'm now considering quiting tkd altogether or switching schools. We only have 4 classes a month of sparring classes and this month two of them was canceled because of testing and the other two I couldn't go to because I had to go to tournaments. I kind of pissed me off. No one at my school competes anymore and its just always training by myself everyday after class. I can't even spar anymore cause no one in my dojang wants to spar. It makes me lose my motivation to even train for tournaments anymore because it doesn't even seem like anyone at my school cares anymore. I'm considering switching schools once my contract is up but I'm not sure how to tell my master. Of course he will most likely be pissed off but I feel I'm wasting my time here. Its either that or I quit tkd altogether. Maybe I wasn't meant to be good at tkd no matter how hard I work and continue to try. I work at least twice as hard as everyone else at my club but only training by myself isn't good enough. I don't understand how you can pick yourself up after that.

How do you cope with losing?
 

Deaf Smith

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wolf30,

Is your reason for being in TKD tournaments?

Ok, on losing. Ever think maybe you have a big head over this? You say you have beaten better guys, and you seem to lose energy and confidence when fighing this one. Well maybe he isn't as bad a fighter as you think and he sees your 'tells' that others can see and thus have your number.

wolf30, so think about that guy you lost to. And keep agoig as there will be other days and other tournaments.

Deaf
 

Jai

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I have run into some of the trouble you are having wolf. There have been times when I have faced people that I know without question I should have walked through, yet they beat me. It's something in the mind that tells you "this guy is no threat" and you lose something I think. If tournaments are really your thing and you do not feel your getting enough tournament training and sparring in, then talk to your instructor before you consider quitting. Maybe there is something that you can work out between the two of you.
 

Kacey

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I see two different issues here. The first one is that you are training for tournament competition, and getting no support in that aspect of your training. If you are not getting what you want from the instructor(s)/school, then yes, you should look into finding a school that gives you what you want. This is a failing of the instructor(s)/school rather than the art.

The second issue is your question - "How do you cope with losing?". This issue is unrelated to the first, except in that the first issue contributes to your losses at tournaments. Losing is a part of life; in any match, there will be a winner and a loser - learning to deal with losing is a part of life. You can either use what you learn when competing to be better next time, or you can give up. All other options come out to these two eventually. How you deal with those two options can be more important than the options themselves. You can either learn from the experience, and change something, or you can not learn from the experience, and not change something. The former (learning and changing) will help you improve; the latter (not learning and not changing) will cause you intense frustration.

I have always chosen to learn whatever I could from losing, and from winning as well. Talk to the judges; talk to any informed bystanders; find out what they think you did well and what you can improve on - from my experience, you will generally get constructive criticism which can help you improve if you learn from it and use it to change your responses.

You said in your post that you can run for 30 minutes without problems but feel like you can't breathe wearing the helmet and mouthguard. Lots of people have the problem; they are constraining. The question then becomes, how often do you train in a helmet and mouthguard? If you're not training in them, they will not become comfortable and will continue to hinder your performance. If you are training in them, and only have problems at tournaments, then you are having problems with the actual competition rather than the equipment. Again, then, you need to talk to observers and get their opinions on what is causing your difficulties.

It sounds like you are not being supported in your current school with your competition goals - that's an issue you need to discuss with your instructor(s).

Competition anxiety can happen to anyone; without support it can be worse, because there's no one there to tell you what you've done right - and whether you've won or lost, there are always things you've done right - but in the thick of the match, you may not be seeing them.
 

terryl965

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You probaly do not even know your own tells and getting beat by people you say are below you why. What purpose are you trying to achieve? Why is competition so important to you? It is a game that right now you are having trouble with. Relax and train and ket it come and not push it.
 

britcanbulldogtkd

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Indomitable Spirit " I will not be defeated " Within any martial art there are no losers everybody is a winner
Nobody defeats you except "yourself" Without sounding conceited or critical I can see 2 reasons for losing.
1. You underestimated your opponent Its something I have done in the past. and its something that others have done when they fought me.
The headguard and mouthguard have nothing to with it Its a mental state displaying itself as weariness/tiredness. examine yr reasons for competing. If its for glory. Taekwondo doesnt promote that. (look to the tennants.Glory isnt mentioned) When you compete remember the tennants and you may start becoming more sucessful

2. If your focusing on quitting then how can a negative create anything positive.

On the wall at the school written in big letters its says "A black belt is a white belt that never quit"

My friend reconsider the quiting and focus on the complete Martial Art not just the competive side of it

good luck
 

Twin Fist

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$20 says you are holding your breath while fighting in the tourny.

Most people do this untill someone points it out to them.

it explains the shortness of breath, and the losing, cuz holding your breath? slows you down comming off the line, and cuts every technique short.
 

jks9199

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You said in your post that you can run for 30 minutes without problems but feel like you can't breathe wearing the helmet and mouthguard. Lots of people have the problem; they are constraining. The question then becomes, how often do you train in a helmet and mouthguard? If you're not training in them, they will not become comfortable and will continue to hinder your performance.

To add to the underlined -- you have to remember the principle of specificity. You want to do the longer cardio (running for 30 minutes, etc) for base line endurance and health. But you've got to do rounds that are similar to your matches, using all the gear, to develop the specific endurance to handle them. You've got to balance the "go for a long time" muscles and endurance with the "expend a lot of energy really fast" capacity, and the only way to do that is specific training. You can use windsprints, rounds of jump rope, and rounds of shadowboxing or bag work to develop this -- and probably want to do all three.
 

Marginal

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Nerves can play a big role outside of forgetting to breathe too. The first few tournaments, you tend to get a massive adrenaline dump running through your system which can tire you out pretty quickly. Once the novelty of going to tournaments wears off a bit, you don't get hammered by that.
 
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wolf30

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wolf30,

Is your reason for being in TKD tournaments?

Ok, on losing. Ever think maybe you have a big head over this? You say you have beaten better guys, and you seem to lose energy and confidence when fighing this one. Well maybe he isn't as bad a fighter as you think and he sees your 'tells' that others can see and thus have your number.

wolf30, so think about that guy you lost to. And keep agoig as there will be other days and other tournaments.

Deaf

No I don't think I have a big head over this. I know for sure I can beat them as I've faced tougher guys before. There are some guys you see and you can basically tell if you can beat them or not and he was one of them. The main reason I see me losing is the breathing issue. I couldn't breath about 20 sec into the match, and basically felt like no air was coming in while I kept on going at it.
 
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wolf30

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I have run into some of the trouble you are having wolf. There have been times when I have faced people that I know without question I should have walked through, yet they beat me. It's something in the mind that tells you "this guy is no threat" and you lose something I think. If tournaments are really your thing and you do not feel your getting enough tournament training and sparring in, then talk to your instructor before you consider quitting. Maybe there is something that you can work out between the two of you.

I have talked to him before and he said he would help me prepare for tournaments. Well guess what his way of helping me was canceling two desperately needed sparring classes this month so that he could test people. Then like 3 days before the tournament he pulls me over after class and shows me two moves and holds the pads for me to kick for 20 times and that was it. How am I suppose to get better if this is the type of training I'm receiving? I had no sparring partners nothing.
 

terryl965

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I have talked to him before and he said he would help me prepare for tournaments. Well guess what his way of helping me was canceling two desperately needed sparring classes this month so that he could test people. Then like 3 days before the tournament he pulls me over after class and shows me two moves and holds the pads for me to kick for 20 times and that was it. How am I suppose to get better if this is the type of training I'm receiving? I had no sparring partners nothing.

Then find another school if he is not doing what he promised.
 
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wolf30

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I see two different issues here. The first one is that you are training for tournament competition, and getting no support in that aspect of your training. If you are not getting what you want from the instructor(s)/school, then yes, you should look into finding a school that gives you what you want. This is a failing of the instructor(s)/school rather than the art.

The second issue is your question - "How do you cope with losing?". This issue is unrelated to the first, except in that the first issue contributes to your losses at tournaments. Losing is a part of life; in any match, there will be a winner and a loser - learning to deal with losing is a part of life. You can either use what you learn when competing to be better next time, or you can give up. All other options come out to these two eventually. How you deal with those two options can be more important than the options themselves. You can either learn from the experience, and change something, or you can not learn from the experience, and not change something. The former (learning and changing) will help you improve; the latter (not learning and not changing) will cause you intense frustration.

I have always chosen to learn whatever I could from losing, and from winning as well. Talk to the judges; talk to any informed bystanders; find out what they think you did well and what you can improve on - from my experience, you will generally get constructive criticism which can help you improve if you learn from it and use it to change your responses.

You said in your post that you can run for 30 minutes without problems but feel like you can't breathe wearing the helmet and mouthguard. Lots of people have the problem; they are constraining. The question then becomes, how often do you train in a helmet and mouthguard? If you're not training in them, they will not become comfortable and will continue to hinder your performance. If you are training in them, and only have problems at tournaments, then you are having problems with the actual competition rather than the equipment. Again, then, you need to talk to observers and get their opinions on what is causing your difficulties.

It sounds like you are not being supported in your current school with your competition goals - that's an issue you need to discuss with your instructor(s).

Competition anxiety can happen to anyone; without support it can be worse, because there's no one there to tell you what you've done right - and whether you've won or lost, there are always things you've done right - but in the thick of the match, you may not be seeing them.

We don't train with our helmets and mouth guards which is the problem. One time I put on my helmet during sparring class and my master told me to take it off so that doesn't really give me much of a chance to train with it during class and after class I have no sparring partners. I basically lose all energy after 20sec into the match and all my mind is focused on is getting air. My legs wouldn't move and no techniques were coming out. I practiced a lot of dodging and countering at my school but nothing was coming out. I really wanted to pound my own two legs with my bare hands cause they wouldn't move properly. Its really frustrating as I do a lot of jogging and cardio but as soon as I put on that helmet and mouth guard it all goes out the window. I spent like 2 months preparing for this tournament doing drills, techniques, cardio day after day and then to have it all taken away just because I'm short of breath makes me wanna pop a vein. I guess I trained the wrong way for the cardio but this was something my master should have told me. If he had provided the proper guidance maybe this wouldn't have been the problem. You know when ever I go to tournaments, my master is never there. Its always me alone or I have to ask a class mate to come with me. Everyone else has there master coaching them in their corner while I have no one. It makes you envy those other students.
 
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wolf30

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Then find another school if he is not doing what he promised.

How would I tell him I want to quit? He will most likely be angry but I feel like I'm wasting my time here. 6 months ago I ran into the same problem I wanted to quit but some people pointed out I should stay a while longer so I decided to give the school another chance and stay another 6 months but now I've had enough.
 

Deaf Smith

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The main reason I see me losing is the breathing issue. I couldn't breath about 20 sec into the match, and basically felt like no air was coming in while I kept on going at it.

Then you are not the 'tougher' guy. They may be technicly difficient but they last longer. That's their asset.

I know guys who do not have my skills but they are so strong they would take my hits and still belt me a good one. That's their assets and thus they are the tougher guys when I spar them!

Deaf
 

jim777

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A bit off the other responses, but I use a DentaGuard mouth guard, which allows for a lot more air in and out than the moutyh guards with the little hole in them. Check them out, it may help with the breathing, which will definitely affect your stamina.
http://www.denta-gard.com/

jim
 

terryl965

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A bit off the other responses, but I use a DentaGuard mouth guard, which allows for a lot more air in and out than the moutyh guards with the little hole in them. Check them out, it may help with the breathing, which will definitely affect your stamina.
http://www.denta-gard.com/

jim

Yes those are great mouth pieces.
 

CoryKS

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If you can't spar w/ mouthguard and headgear, try wearing them the next time you use the treadmill. It will give you some experience with breathing heavily with a mouth full of plastic and encourages breathing in through your nose.
 

StuartA

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How do you cope with losing?


Well, if it was my son, daughter or partner.. I would be deeply distressed, blame myself for not training hard enough to protect them, go through 1000 different senerios of what should of happen and probibly never forgive myself, hit the bottom and eventually kill myself one way or another.

If it was a tournament, Id understand its just a game, points to be scored etc., I had a bad day for some reason, no excuses I want good enough o the day for some reason and try to learn from it to make myself better and make that possibibily smaller next time.

Stuart
 

Kacey

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How would I tell him I want to quit? He will most likely be angry but I feel like I'm wasting my time here. 6 months ago I ran into the same problem I wanted to quit but some people pointed out I should stay a while longer so I decided to give the school another chance and stay another 6 months but now I've had enough.

How will he know you are not getting what you want unless you tell him? He is your instructor, yes... but he is not omniscient. Unless you tell him your concerns, nothing will change - and while I understand respecting your instructor, respect must go both ways. If he's not meeting your needs, then he is not respecting you. You have to do what is right for you - not what you think he thinks is best for you.

Changing instructors is a hard decision to make - but it sounds to me like you've given him more than enough time to meet your needs. Try a few other classes and see if they meet your needs/interests better - then decide if you're going to change instructors or not. You may find a class that comes closer to meeting your preferences - but you may not. Still, the only way to find out is to look - but until you've looked, I would suggest not burning any bridges.
 
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