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