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Thread: Tae Kwon Do

  1. #21
    There is no charge for Awesomeness Jimbo's Avatar
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    And on the belt thing, ours is pretty much like Birn described - I think there are 10 belts and then black. There's a minimum time between lower belt gradings (3 months or so), but the instructor decides if at that time you are ready to grade, so you might not go through them at every scheduled grading day, and it does happen.

    My school also has what's called a "leadership" group. Basically the master and instructors watch out for people who display particular attributes in mental attitude and so on, and invite them to become a member. Leadership students get extra lessons and do more advanced stuff, and in return you are expected to lead by example in class and be someone the other students can look up to and model themselves off. Leadership students get the option, if they are capable and the master agrees, to multiple-grade especially at lower and intermediate belts.

    Anyway, once you get to 3 belts away from your black, we do what is called panel grading. These are a big step up from a normal grade and only occur every 6 months or so (again that's the minimum and the master has final say on whether you can grade or not). Your first panel grade lasts about 3 hours or so. The next one about 4 hours, and your black belt grading can go on for up to 6 hours. I think mine started at 11am and I finished my final sparring round at about 4:30pm according to my wife - I wasn't paying much attention to time.

    But wait, there's more. Since we have a lot of junior members (<14 years old) we've recently introduced junior belts up to a junior black belt. The black belt is the same (a black belt), but the other belts have a white stripe up the middle of the normal adult belt colour to differentiate them. A junior black belt who transitions across to adult classes has to start a belt or two below the black to get their adult black belt, since the physical criteria differ between junior and senior 1st degree gradings.

    So there you go - way too much info I'm sure. But that's how we do it. Oh, and for our school each dan takes the corresponding number of years (minimum) - 2nd dan takes two years after your 1st dan, 3rd dan 3 years after your 2nd and so on. I've been doing the numbers and I could go for my 4th dan (master) when I'm 52. I'm not ruling it out but by then I'm not sure I'd be able to do the physical criteria (eg 1000 continuous push ups - seems ridiculous to me. I'm flat out trying to do the 150 I need for my next grading...)

    James.
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  2. #22
    There is no charge for Awesomeness Jimbo's Avatar
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    Well, did my first completely on my own set of lessons the other day. There were three - the tiny ones (from 3 - 8 years old, 45 minutes), the juniors (8-14 year olds, 1.25 hours), and adults (14+, though most were 25+, 1.50 hours).

    My biggest headache, despite the fact I've been through it all myself, was trying to remember which techniques went with which belt! lol!

    I wouldn't call the tiny kids a nightmare, but wow! Herding cats comes to mind. Generally we do things in a circle on the mats, but I lined them up in front of me for some line work at one point and had one little one who just wanted to stand pretty much on my toes - I moved back, she moved forward. I got her in line, she'd come straight back out and stand toe to toe...Then there was the "budding romance" between two of them - if he wasn't pulling her hair, she was planting kisses on his cheek (much to his disgust, I should add).

    And then (of course) they all wanted to know what happened to my hair. And then, during the talk on stranger danger one of them asked to go to the toilet and as soon as they'd gone the rest followed like dominos... Man, those little kids made me feel like a complete newb! Give me uni students any day.

    But, we played a few games - they enjoyed one I made up: ninja pirate treasure hunt lol! I hid an Eiffel Tower snow dome under some cones, called it my pirate treasure and we followed the treasure map in my head to find it - 3 squat jumps left, 5 pushups over there etc. A workout disguised as a game is definitely the way to go.

    Juniors and adults were a lot better in terms of focus.

    Anyway, it was fun. I'm glad I don't do it for a living, especially the little ones - that 45 minutes felt like 2 hours. But there was good feedback, we all had some fun and learned stuff. Off to do the same again with a different group on Monday, with some valuable lessons learned (like sending them to the toilet before class....)

    James.
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  3. #23
    Senior Member deepweeds's Avatar
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    That thing with the bathrooms, yep. No one has to go until one of them does, then they all do.

    Sounds great! Congratulations. The few hours each week I teach TKD are as big a part of my life as the lessons I take myself.
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  4. #24
    There is no charge for Awesomeness Jimbo's Avatar
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    Thanks Deepweeds - and I'm very glad to know that the bathroom issue is a common thing. Kinda freaked me out when it happened I guess it's better than accidents on the mats.

    I think I'm going to enjoy it. Just that one experience on my own (I help my master out in class, but it really is different) really made me focus on technique and how to show it properly. So apart from the fun of teaching I know it will help me improve myself as well (and there is much improvement to be had, let me tell you! )

    James.
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  5. #25
    May your bone always be well buried MickR's Avatar
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    I haven't trained in MA for years. I did a few different styles and TKD was one. I started when I was 8 years old in Judo, and from there I went to Renbukan karate a very formal style, Shorin Ryu which was a dirty street fighting style that suited me to a tee, Oh Do Kwan a military style of TKD and in this I trained 2 hours a day 7 days a week for some years but it just wasn't a 'hard' enough style for my taste, and so I changed style completely and went on to an Okinawan style called Uechi Ryu, which suited me better, until I moved interstate for a while and found a similar,albeit, softer version called Wado Ryu. By that time I was in my early 20's. I've trained with friends who studied various other styles, Hapkido, Chow Gar Tong Long Kung Fu and Aikido and learned much from them as they did from me. These days my focus is on the Western MA. If I was to go back to an Eastern style I think I would gravitate towards Kung Fu or Aikido. I'm too far gone for attempting the nimble high kicking stuff in TKD. The lower kicks used in Kung Fu and Aikido, along with the circular flow would do me more good these days.


    Mick
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