|Black Belts Preparing to Spar|
teamwork, the drive to succeed and show good sportsmanship, all of these qualities and more are at display at a Colorado Taekwondo Institute tournament. Tournaments are a great way for students to practice what they’ve learned and put their skills on display in front of friends and loved ones. If you or your child is looking for a martial arts school with history of developing strong minds and bodies, the Colorado Taekwondo Institute offers courses in the popular Korean art of taekwondo, as well as skills like judo and karate, at several convenient campuses throughout the state.
If you are considering a Colorado martial arts program, you may be curious about what to expect when you enter a tournament. Taekwondo tournaments are as intense and competitive as any sport, with safe sparring at beginning, intermediate, and more advanced levels. Here are some of the things you can expect from a sparring tournament:
A Year Full of TournamentsCTI students have the opportunity to participate in a number of Denver area and Colorado tournaments throughout the year, including the CTI Super Bowl scheduled in March, 2015. All levels of students will be able to compete, from white belt beginners to black belts. Sparring competition helps even beginners to gain confidence and practice the new skills they’ve learned against equally measured competition.
Along the way, you’ll learn to control your anger and temperament, and learn a high level of focus and concentration. Sparring competitions are not just a great way to practice and display your own talents, they also give you the chance to cheer on your teammates and see what more advanced students are doing against their competition. Sparring competitors come in all sizes, and your instructor will never put you in danger of being hurt by larger or more advanced students.
Preparing for Your Big MatchThe best way to improve your sparring techniques is to continue sparring whenever you get the chance. In order to make your match a success, practice sparring drills at home along with your time practicing in class. Your experience, knowledge, and self-discipline will often dictate whether or not you do well in a match. Training lets you stay in control of your own movements. With practice, you will be able to demonstrate some of the following skills against your opponent:
- Stepping Drills – In our Black Belt Club, we practice various "stepping drills" that are designed to help the student improve speed and reaction times. What you do with your feet between kicks can be as important as your kick. Sliding, switching feet, and stepping forward and backward appropriately will help you stay in control of your match.
- Practice Kicking Distance – During training, kicking techniques will be practiced to the extent that reproducing them will be part of your taekwondo instinct. You will also need to practice the right distance where landing will be most effective. Well-placed kicks should be a matter of measurement once you have mastered your footwork.
- Practice Basics – Our basic routine in Moo Sul Kwan Taekwondo provides a great framework to help you master your techniques and provides a great way to build your muscular strength and endurance.
It is important to remember that nerves are normal in any sporting competition, particular those where you take center stage alone. Pushing through fear and nervousness is the hallmark of a great competitor. Use your nerves to develop techniques to turn tight muscles into relaxed ones, and hurried breaths, to longer, calmer ones.
What to Take Away from Your MatchAt the Colorado Taekwondo Institute, your lessons will deal with much more than merely sparring effectiveness. The lessons learned at any martial arts school should be focused on self-discipline, respect, focus, and fun. However, it will benefit you to begin sparring as soon as possible. This will help you reduce your nerves and gain valuable experience that you can bring to your next match. The more you spar, the more quickly you’ll learn that tournaments are not just about beating your opponent.
Although that trophy would look great on your dresser, sparring tournaments are about so much more. Good sportsmanship, respect for your competition, and a positive attitude toward competition and the art of taekwondo take precedent. Learning to spar is more about learning how to compete with yourself, drive yourself to reach new goals, and learn skills that can benefit you in many aspects of life. Tournaments are a great way to strive to meet these goals, as well as new people.