Tonight we entered hour three of an 11 hour course on teacher development. This was for Denmark’s Holstebro Taekwondo Klub via Zoom. We took a more in depth look at better addressing the dual concerns of defence and confidence. These are elements that can be positively linked. Many students fear sparring due to an exposure of their own limitations or, as is true for a substantial proportion, timidity. Building a strong defence can help install better confidence when it comes to sparring. When a student starts thinking as much about making an opponent miss as he does trying to hit said opponent, a much better game develops. Sparring should be nurtured as a constant and integral part of regular training with plenty of fun and skill development games.
- Warm up involving forward, backward and angling off movement patterns with a strong emphasis on all defensive techniques – parrying, blocking, slipping, rolling, pull-back and covering.
- Tag sparring to develop footwork and faints – Partners try to tag and defend tags to their thigh, then to their shoulder and then both. This can also be subdivided into more specific games where the objective is to solely touch the lead shoulder or lead thigh
- We worked through a system of six basic and two extra punches – 1 = jab, 2 = cross/straight, 3 = lead hook, 4 = rear hook, 5 = lead uppercut, 6 = rear uppercut, 7 = lead shovel hook and 8 = rear overhand – with variations on these such as basic jab, step jab and body jab. I kept away from focusing on the ranges of hooks, rear shovel hooks and more sophisticated straight punches.
- We went through some basic shadow boxing combinations to try out in the sparring exercises.
- Sparring training then consisted of 2 x rounds of one fighter attacking and the other using defensive techniques followed by 1 x round of free-sparring.
At the end I addressed style identification, which is a topic discussed in depth in this “Learn from the Fight” lesson.