This month some of our Taekwon Tigers, the youngest members amongst us, will be grading for the first time. Most of them won’t know what to expect and might be worried about facing yet another type of ’test’ when they could be down the beach (weather dependent!) or at the park.
I thought that I would write a short blog just to give parents a heads up and to take the mystery out of the whole process so that they can look forward to it, perform to the best of their ability and be proud of their efforts and achievements.
The whole purpose of a grading is to make sure your child is ready to progress to their next belt and step up a level in their training. It does take place in a formal setting with parents and peers watching, so there is bound to be a bit of nervous tension in the air, but the instructors aren’t going to be trying to catch anybody out. With each belt based on a theme, the aim is to give your child the opportunity to show us they’ve been focused and alert in their training sessions. The current theme is ‘BALANCE’ so, during the grading they will be asked to demonstrate the various skills they have been taught in and around this theme as well as the basic taekwondo moves covered in class like punching, kicking and blocking.
Despite our best intentions to keep timings tight, there always seems to be an element of waiting around before a grading but in our experience this time is best used to warm up the body and mentally prepare for the task ahead. After the warm up session, led by one of our senior belts, Instructors will collect each group and take them through to a different room for their grading. Please tell your child not to worry if they make a little mistake, their best will always good enough!
The most important thing we ask youngsters to remember is to enjoy the Taekwondo journey and with it every belt they earn along the way. From the outset we all have aspirations to master the discipline of Taekwondo but it isn’t a race. When you finally do tie the black belt around your waist, you realise the learning isn’t over – it’s only just begun!
As always, details will be posted up on Facebook and Agnes will be selling her cakes for Children’s Hospice South West – a lovely treat to look forward to after the grading!