There's just something very cool about watching or participating in someone's journey. This thread has me wishing for the time and funds to go pursue another BB, as well as wishing for some advanced students creeping toward that target.You guys are the best. It’s crazy to think you’ve all been following my journey for two years. Only about 7 months til black belt. Phew...
Then your real training starts
Sounds like fun for someone who likes teaching kids!Yes...this is very true haha. Being my school's full time manager (and only employee) and technically the most senior instructor under the master, I already get a taste of more advanced training. Tomorrow I am going to start a 4 week class at a local preschool (pretty sure I've talked about this a couple of times since we've done it before), but this time I am teaching it alone. I worked with my master yesterday to create a lesson plan for the first class, and he has reassured me that I don't have to be perfect this time, I just need the experience. So tomorrow, off I go to lead a class. I'm actually, surprisingly, not nervous. Teaching is "my thing". I just love it, and while I have a LOT to learn, I've been given some very excellent resources for training.
Ah that's so cool, teaching kids is alot of fun, enjoy yourself!Yes...this is very true haha. Being my school's full time manager (and only employee) and technically the most senior instructor under the master, I already get a taste of more advanced training. Tomorrow I am going to start a 4 week class at a local preschool (pretty sure I've talked about this a couple of times since we've done it before), but this time I am teaching it alone. I worked with my master yesterday to create a lesson plan for the first class, and he has reassured me that I don't have to be perfect this time, I just need the experience. So tomorrow, off I go to lead a class. I'm actually, surprisingly, not nervous. Teaching is "my thing". I just love it, and while I have a LOT to learn, I've been given some very excellent resources for training.
I love it when I hear someone who is confident they are ready AND still wants to get better by the test. Use that test to push yourself and be proud of what you achieve.Well. I now have the date for my black belt test. November 17. I'm not "ready", so I'm glad I have 6 months, but I also can't wait for it to come. Technically I could pass the test now. I know all my forms, can do them at random without a problem (though I did mess up one block in Taegeuk 4 when I let myself get distracted by my aunt completely forgetting her form next to me) and know all the one step sparring and breaking techniques. But I'm not good enough yet. My master and I hold me to a higher standard than others. I want the guest masters who judge my test to have their jaws on the floor during my testing. I want them to be proud of my master for how he's trained me. That's my goal anyway. I want perfect scores and to LOOK like a black belt.
Last weekend, two kids who transferred to our school has higher belts did their black belt test. They both passed and became the first students to earn a black belt from our school, though they didn't get an official big black belt test. They just tested alone on a Saturday afternoon for just their families. My test will be at a gym away from our school and will be a huge deal where the whole school is invited. We'll be the first group to have trained from white belt at this school.
Tomorrow is our annual picnic. Last year we had around 30-40 people show up. This year we have over 100 coming. I am SO excited!
Finally, I've taught my 4 classes at that preschool, but i'm doing 2 bonus classes since we can't host a graduation for them tomorrow due to our picnic, and next week we're closed for memorial day. The classes have been going well and I'm getting the hang of redirecting kids who are just there to play around. That's really what I need. It seems to be helping with my regular teaching skills too. Two more classes, then I'm leading their graduation class for their parents. Fingers crossed I get a sign up or two out of it, but I'm thankful for the experience either way.
I was hoping to do my first "maintenance test" this month, since I got my "yes you can test" tip a month ago, but we haven't talked about it so I'm not sure if I am or not. It's not a big deal if I don't, since I won't be able to test for black belt until everyone else in the group is ready. But I'd like to, because earning tips is still very exciting. Black belt will be harder since tips only come every few months during level tests.
If you read this much..thanks! This has become kind of a blog for me. I enjoy going back and reading everything every so often, and seeing how far I've grown as a student and instructor. As always, thank you all for your support and encouragement!
... I know all my forms, can do them at random without a problem (though I did mess up one block in Taegeuk 4 when I let myself get distracted by my aunt completely forgetting her form next to me)...
We had a 5th dan doing a kata demonstration at one of our tournaments a few years ago (he was demonstrating, not competing). He completely froze right in the middle of it, forgetting where he was in that kata. He stood there a good 15-20 seconds with everyone cheering and saying stuff like “don’t start over, you got this.” He continued right where he paused after he got his bearings straight.I don't think this phenomenon ever goes away entirely. Our 7th dan kwanjangnim has been doing taekwondo for 40+ years, and even he will have a momentary brain fart once in a while. It can happen because the person next to you distracts you, or sometimes when you're teaching you get so focused on explaining that you lose focus on the doing.
Outstanding!!! It is refreshing to hear the excitement of a new practitioner. Keep grinding and look for the new in each class.Tonight I got my 2nd tip/stripe/whatever term you use on my white belt! It may seem like a small victory to some, but I am thrilled. My mom and I (I'm 32, and we're pretty much roommates, which is quite awesome) started taekwondo at a brand new school on Feb 18. The school opened the day before, but we were so in love with it after the first day of our trial, we signed up after our second class. Anyway, we got our first tips for learning the steps of the kibon poomsae. Not just going through the motions, but actually really doing the steps with correct form. We got our second tips tonight for doing the complete form with the low blocks and middle punches...plus maintaining the correct stance, not wobbling on turns, etc. It was AWESOME to get that second piece of tape on my belt, and I am even more pumped to keep going.
Everything hurts, and I'm exhausted, but this is awesome. I'm losing weight and actually developing some muscles already (the only shape I'm in currently is round, lol). My endurance is building, and I'm getting more flexible. And it's only been 3 weeks on Thursday.
Our first belt test will be in late April, and we have two more tips to earn before then - one for one step sparring, and one for board breaking. I am loving my school and look forward to being a part of its growth. I feel pushed to do my best at everything, encouraged when I struggle, and praised when appropriate. It's awesome.
Sorry for the long post, I am just so passionate about this already, and I had to share!
The kick return is very much a knee/hip thing. Often I see people swinging their leg, not using their knee enough if at all making it hard to return. Flexibility in the hip and strength in the mid-section will help a lot as well. Time and patience.Well, belt testing is a month from tomorrow. I'm feeling pretty ready, though we haven't done any actual board breaking yet, so I'm nervous for that. We've practiced the technique on foam boards though so we should be ready to give it a go when the time comes. We should be getting our black tips (4th and final one) this week. To get it, we basically have to do our entire yellow belt test - the form, one step sparring, a basic kicking combination, and board breaking (hammer fist). This week we are focusing on our form, which I find is really exhausting to do correctly! I feel pretty confident about almost everything though, so I'm allllmost ready for April 29. My biggest struggle is actually doing a proper roundhouse kick during our kicking combo. Being overweight and out of shape makes it hard to kick then bring my leg back behind me into kicking stance. I typically have to put it down in front of me, then move back. I'm working on it, though. I've already lost who knows how much weight. The scale says only about 7lbs, but the way my clothes fit and the way I look suggests it's more like 15ish. Must be muscle building up somewhere!
Since we're a new school with just one master, I'll be helping out with the kids white belt class once I get my yellow belt. No actual teaching, just helping demonstrate and being a partner when there's an odd number of kids. I'm really looking forward to that. I'm hoping to end up as an assistant instructor in 3ish years after I get my black belt. One step at a time though!
Tonight I had my first maintenance test! Basically a mock black belt test just for forms and breaking. I had the approval since April 19 but I’ve been waiting for the other double black stripes to be ready.
So tonight I was randomly assigned Taegeuk 6, then 4, then 8. Then did a 3 station breaking: knife hand, spinning kick, and flying side kick. I’ll have a breaking video for you guys soon I think. I nailed the forms, and broke every board in one try. Very happy!!!
Next is a 2 hour class sometime in the near future, then another maintenance test, then another 2 hour class....and then belt testing!