Friday, May 30, 2014

Kicking and Screaming? How Kids Taekwondo can Help Your Child Overcome Obstacles

Hard Work in Class Pays Off!
It is not uncommon in our modern world for children to have difficulty navigating the vast amount of stimuli and remaining focused and alert. There are many different theories when it comes to parenting a child with certain challenges, and many professionals agree that the right kind of physical exercise can go a long way to helping your child gain self-confidence and concentration in other aspects of their life. Lakewood taekwondo classes at the Colorado Taekwondo Institute can take these benefits to another level. Kids’ taekwondo can help teach self-discipline, focus, and respect, along with physical strength, balance, and agility.

Even if your child already excels in these areas, they can still get a lot out of martial arts training. For families in Green Mountain and Lakewood, martial arts classes can be a great outlet for stress and an excellent opportunity for kids to find a competitive sport that allows them to advance and challenge themselves as they grow. With over thirty years of history teaching kids and adults the benefits of taekwondo and other martial arts, the Colorado Taekwondo Institute consistently guides strong participation in local and national tournaments. Here are just a few of the things your child will be able to develop as they learn and grow in the ancient art of taekwondo.

Physical Development
Martial arts shouldn’t be confused with fighting or self-defense. Generating focused power in the feet takes a high degree of discipline and training, and the results can lead to healthy muscle tone, physical stamina, and a great sense of physical balance. In martial arts, strength comes from practice and discipline, harnessing the lower-body power we are born with.
Taekwondo refers to the idea of the feet and hands, and being able to develop the same type of control and accuracy with strikes from the foot, as punches from the fist. Not a violent act, taekwondo kicks simply help students realize the full potential in the full body strength as they develop the skills to advance through their classes. For kids in Lakewood, taekwondo classes can follow them into adulthood.

Behavioral Benefits
The emotional benefits of taekwondo training may prove to be even more beneficial for your child than the development of physical strength. By utilizing the entire body in a focused and disciplined manner, taekwondo is a great way to relieve stress and help kids find an acceptable outlet for common frustrations that arise. According to Alison Hendrie of, martial arts training can help children with ADHD or other attention and hyperactivity develop the underdeveloped aspects in their brain to overcome the challenges they face.

For all children, Green Mountain and Lakewood martial arts training helps to build respect, listening skills, social responsibility, and teamwork. Taekwondo, like many types of martial arts traditions, placing a high emphasis on meditation and calm, skills that children can transfer to other aspects of their lives, including school, where many parents can see their child able to boost their grades and improve their behavior in the classroom environment.

Goals to Grow On
Masters in martial arts often train for decades before they reach their status in order to be able to share their gifts with students. Their advancement is a lesson for beginners that there is virtually no end to the goals young children can set for themselves in taekwondo training. Even as beginners begin to build their skills, they can participate in tournaments to compete and display their developing techniques.

The Colorado Taekwondo Institute has nine different belts that can be achieved through mastering techniques and displaying the type of self-discipline and respect necessary to advance in their training. Beginners first earn their white belt which signifies purity and planting strong roots, with advancements likened to the development of a strong tree that takes years to reach full maturity, and the noted “Black Belt”.

A Safe Release in a Violent World
If your preconception of martial arts is derived from television or movies, you may equate it with violence or fighting. The truth is that kids’ taekwondo training promotes non-violent conflict resolution and other skills that breed a sense of peace in well-being in youngsters. Children learn self-control and discipline that help them avoid situations of physical confrontation and manage their stress and frustration as an invaluable asset that can help keep your kid safe.

Your child doesn’t think about the many benefits they might get from taekwondo and other martial arts. The greatest benefit that can keep them coming back, striving for the next goal and honing their techniques, is that taekwondo is fun. When children find a controlled way to have fun and be part of a team, they’ll want to keep coming back, year after year.


Thursday, May 22, 2014

Respect for Success

By Mark Scott, red belt

Respect means showing the value or importance of something or someone.  When we respect the law, we show the importance of the law in our society by acting in accordance with its regulations.  To show respect to someone, we show that we value their opinions by asking advice, we show trust by following their leadership, and we accept their faults along with their abilities and talents.

Respect should be used in all areas of our lives to exist in a healthy society.  Showing respect at home should be obvious.  Children should always give respect to their parents.  Parents should show respect to their children when they do the right things by increasing their responsibility and giving them more freedom.  Husbands and wives should show respect for each other by always listening, always forgive each others mistakes, and accept each other faults.  Any lack of respect causes a breakdown which could break up the home.

Respect at work must be shown to both those above, equal, and below in the hierarchy.  When those above make decisions, they must be followed and respected.  If the decisions aren't respected, the leaders will replace the workers with those who will follow and respect the decisions.  Respect must be shown by the leaders as well to those below by rewarding by promotions or monetary increases.  We must respect our equals to work together and make the right decisions which in turn produces the best quality work.

I have and try to show a great deal of respect to my co-workers.  Again and again they show a great deal of imagination to solve problems.  They also produce work of great quality.  I must also try harder to show more respect to the upper management at my work.  While my direct managers seem to make decisions that are easy to understand, the higher management make decisions that sometimes seem to be counter-productive.  Instead of finding fault with the decisions, I should respect those decisions and try harder to understand and follow their leadership.

". . . and we accept their faults along with their abilities and talents."

Monday, May 19, 2014

Take Your Skills to the Next Level

Black Belts Preparing to Spar
Seeing your kids participate in competitive sports is an experience that can’t be missed. The spirit of
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 Tournaments

CTI 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 Match

The 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 Match

At 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.


Wednesday, May 7, 2014


"Keeping it to the Grindstone"

This year's Moo Sul Kwan Summer Expo is being held in Breckenridge, Colorado, on May 30 - June 1.

Beaver Run Resort has been home to four other MSK Summer Expos in the past, and it has proven to be a fantastic venue for the Expo.  Top Moo Sul Kwan martial arts instructors like MSK and AMASEA President Charles F. Hildebrand and Grandmaster James M. Sautel, President of the CTI, will be on hand to instruct students of all ages and belt levels during the three day weekend at one of the top ski resorts in the United States.

The seminars and classes begin on Friday evening and run to noon on Sunday.  This year's Summer Expo theme is, "Keeping it to the Grindstone."  The many different classes, seminars and events will keep this important theme in mind.  Some of the other dynamic Expo Instructors include:  Master Merinda Sautel, Master John Sautel, Master Erik Albrechtson and 4th dans Freddy Sautel, Clayton Garner and Alice Meyung.

On Saturday, there is the annual Expo Banquet and Party which always involves family entertainment from the instructors and students.  Also during this wonderful weekend will be the Amazing Moo Sul Race X.  Participants are given a Moo Sul Race T-shirt, placed in teams, and then the action begins as the teams figure out and overcome the many obstacles and challenges on their journey.  As always, during the weekend, there will be special classes for our parents, family members and friends taught by some of our finest instructors.

Come to Colorado!  Come to Breckenridge!  Come to Beaver Run Resort!  Improve yourself and have a blast!

More information about the MSK Summer Expo can be found here.

You can register online for the MSK Summer Expo!

Monday, May 5, 2014

My New Life as a CTI Taekwondo Student

"I feel stronger mentally, physically and emotionally."

By Jayne Bognar, yellow belt

As a testing white belt in the Colorado Taekwondo Institute, martial arts has impacted my life in several, positive ways.  The most pervasive being the profound impact on my over-all well-being.  In addition to being twelve pounds lighter, I feel as though my “life’s’ load” no longer weighs me down as much.  I feel stronger mentally, physically, and emotionally.  The intense exercise provides me with the much needed cathartic release of stress from my career and external events.

Prior to CTI Taekwondo, I was experiencing, on average, four Migraine headaches per month as well as frequent tension headaches accompanied by neck and shoulder pain.  All aspects of this training have dramatically diminished the latter.  Now that I am engaging in a positive outlet to lower my stress, I am more able to manage my eating rather than use food to combat stress.

It is quite validating to have others recognize the changes in me since the inception of Taekwondo in my life. The most common theme is my calmer disposition as well as an increase in my self-confidence.  When others begin to notice, you must be doing something right!   I just feel as though I walk “taller” and have a greater sense of peace and awareness in my life.  Of course, there have been classes where I have just wanted to crawl in a hole due to that “stinking thinking” which can range from, “I hate being the fattest person in class,” to “Will I ever be able to get all the way through these jumping jacks?”  These moments are fewer and farther between as I tell myself that positive thoughts breed positive results!

Finally, being a new student Colorado Taekwondo Institute has provided me with a greater sense of empathy than before, for my students. Feeling like they will “never get it” is often a common theme that my special education students communicate to me.  I now can relate to them on a deeper level, as we often have conversations about these feelings that their teacher can truly identify with.  I believe I am a more effective teacher because of it.

In conclusion, I have found something that I feel committed to and offers me more than just great exercise.  It offers another group of people to whom I can feel connected, has increased my focus, decreased my stress, and just has made me a better person all around.  A person, whom I hope, people will see an “indomitable spirit.”