ITF World Championships 10th Junior, 15th Adult and 1st Senior

A team of 10 of us, including Master Daniel Sng, participated at the ITF World Championships 10th Junior, 15th Adult and 1st Senior from 4th of July to the 8th of July 2010 in South Korea at Cheongju.

There were a total of more than 30 countries who took part in this major event. It is the second time ITF held the World Championships in South Korea, the birthplace of Taekwon-Do. The first was in 2004, at Daejeon.

The ITF Championships consisted of Individual Patterns, Team Patterns, Individual Sparring, Team Sparring, Power Breaking and Special Techniques. It was very interesting to see the Seniors compete as it is the first time ITF has organized a Senior Championships for them. I hope that more Seniors would come forward to continue to compete and never give up. Taekwon-Do is not only for the young, but it is for life.

Our Singapore team competed in the Individual Patterns and we would like to congratulate Ms Tang Poh Looi, who won the bronze medal for the Adult Female 2nd Degree patterns and we are all proud of her achievement! The rest of us got through to quarter finals and we will strive to work harder and compete in the next ITF World Championships in 2012.

It was heartwarming for me as it is the first time I have been to the World Championships. This event allowed me to learn more about the culture of the different countries and make new friends. The experience is hard for me to put it in words. As Taekwon-Do practitioners, we are given this opportunity to meet others from all around the world through this World Championships held once every two years. Watching the competitors compete showed me how much time and effort they have put in to attain what they have.

Some of us exchanged numbers, email addresses, our jackets and doboks with other countries for remembrance and a token of appreciation.

During the sparring matches, I saw many competitors who never gave up though they had fallen and continued to spar with their indomitable spirit. We should all have this indomitable spirit in us as well as sportsmanship and strive to do our best.

The event ended with Cheongwan Governor’s reception and a farewell disco party.

I would like to thank ITF for organizing this World Championships 2010, congratulate all medal winners across the world, thank Master Daniel Sng and the entire Singapore team who went to the World Championships 2010, thank our wonderful guide Miss Kong Jae Hee who helped us a lot throughout the trip and everyone who made this event possible.

Taekwon.

Written by Ms. Justina Maria Sng, 2nd Degree Black Belt, ITF Singapore.
© Island Taekwon-Do Centre 2010

Country:
Republic of Korea

Venue:
Chungcheongbuk-Do (Cheongju)

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11th World Taekwondo Festival and Korea Classic Open 2010

I am honoured to be one of the ten members of Island Taekwon-Do Centre to participate in the 11th World Taekwondo Festival and Korea Classic Open 2010. It was held on the 30th of June to the 4th of July and was held in conjunction with the International Taekwon-Do Federation World Championships 2010.

We left Singapore on the 28th of June and arrived at Incheon International Airport on the 29th of June, one day ahead of the commencement of the Festival. We were greeted by our very dedicated guide, Jae Hee. The Festival, and the World Championships, was located in Chungcheongbuk-do. Our accommodation, unlike the previous Festival, was based in Chungbuk National University, which was also located within Chungcheongbuk-do.

It was amazing to see competitors from about sixty different nations coming together, regardless of the style of Taekwon-Do they practice. Having the competition here in Korea, the birthplace of Taekwon-Do makes the whole experience a lot more meaningful. The festival kicked off with a simple flag raising ceremony on the 30th of June, where the presence of all participating countries was recognised. As the Festival was held in conjunction with the ITF World Championships this year, we had a combined opening ceremony a few days later.

We kicked off the Festival with ITF patterns and WTF sparring. It was a great opportunity to witness how World Taekwondo Federation (WTF) practitioners sparred and hence compare and observe the similarities and differences both ITF and WTF have. Indeed, despite the differences, there are still many tips one can pick up from watching WTF sparring.

Apart from all the training and competitions, the team definitely had fun interacting with one another and taking countless photographs. I am certain that we all knew each other better after this two weeks long trip.

At the end of the Festival, we emerged victorious with one gold medal and three bronze medals. However, this victory is definitely not the player’s alone as all these cannot be accomplished without the guidance of Master Sng and Jonathan sir, our head coach. All of these will also not be possible without the support and well wishes of our friends and fellow practitioners back in Island Taekwon-Do Centre. So here’s a big thank you to everyone.

Written by Mr. Thian Chuan Kai, 2nd Degree Black Belt, ITF Singapore.
© Island Taekwon-Do Centre 2010

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Inaugural World Taekwon-Do Education Centre Seminar 2010

The inaugural World Taekwondo Education Centre ITF course was held on the 9th and 10th of July 2010. Entitled General Choi Hong Hi and His Art, it was the first Taekwon-Do seminar I have attended. Consequently, I was uncertain of the way it would be conducted. Unsure as I may have been, I am now sure that I will jump at the next oppurtunity to attend a seminar when presented.

The first day kicked off to a flying start with the charismatic Master Rudolph Kang from Russia going through the fundamentals of Taekwon-Do techniques, focussing on power and the use of mass and acceleration in developing it. He followed this by sharing with us some mistakes commonly displayed in Tul.

Masters Nestor Galarraga and Jose Maidana then guided us through various techniques and combinations, showing the details required in their execution.

The participants were then taken up into the mountains, where we enjoyed a delightful lunch, and a leisurely stroll through a historical site. We had a photo session, before vying for the chance to take individual photos with the more esteemed members of ITF.

When we arrived back at the WTEC dojang, the ever humourous Dr. Zibby Kruk took us through a refreshingly different lesson, ‘Kicks and Sticks’. He taught us the basics of using sticks and made us practise in pairs. I did get more than I bargained for though, when my partner managed to strike me with his bamboo stick.

Before retiring to our various hotels and dormitories, we were treated to a wonderful dinner. We had a good time, although we did without the usual accompaniment to merriment.

Day two began with Grandmaster Choi Jung Hwa refining our techniques by going back to basics. It was a lively session, with the Grandmaster and Masters correcting and rectifying our errors.

Lunch proceeded this, followed by Master Michael Muleta demonstrating different ways of conducting a class, while explaining them. He actively used us as students. In effect, he used the class to teach itself. Towards the end, he taught us a several self-defence techniques.

Master Don Dalton then went through some sparring techniques, and Masters Galarraga and Maidana of Argentina continued by answering our queries regarding sparring and competition in general.

The course concluded at a Chinese restaurant, where the participants were presented with certificates. Several countries received banners. Singapore was among the quartet. For this, we have none other to thank than Ms. Chen Weiling and her efforts.

This may be but an objective description of the seminar, but on a more subjective level, I found the seminar to be thoroughly enjoyable, in addition to to being extremely informative and beneficial. For this experience which filled me with wonderment, there is a single word which describes all the people whom I am obliged to thank. Everyone.

Written by Mr Shameer Yaqin, 1st Degree Black Belt, ITF Singapore

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© Island Taekwon-Do Centre 2010

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