Exchange Training with Zest Martial Arts Academy Training Centre

At the early hour of 6am, Carnation-Mdm, Yuki-Mdm, Amber and myself met up at Changi Airport for our flight to Kuala Lumpur (KL). We took a quick, light breakfast of bread and coffee at the airport, knowing that we will have an extensive menu of food to eat in KL.

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We were welcomed into KL by none other than Master Sng and Qi Zhao-Sir, while Shaun-Sir waited for us in a 7-seater MPV at the Waiting Area.

First we headed to Semenyih village market near Shaun-Sir’s office for a ‘simple’ lunch. The lunch consisted of Wanton Noodles, Char Siew and Roast Pork, Pork Porridge, Char Kuay Teow and Butter Kaya Toast and Eggs, just to name a few!

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After a short stopover at Shaun-Sir’s office, we headed to Endah Parade shopping mall to visit a martial arts equipment shop which was lined up with a lot of equipment for Karate, Taekwon-Do (both ITF and WTF), Kickboxing, Boxing, MMA, Muay Thai, to name a few. We purchased some items like Taekwon-Do shoes, sparring equipment, gym equipment, etc.

On the way out of the shop, we noticed a relatively quiet bowling alley and decided that since we still had time, we could go for a game of bowling. Many of us had similar comments: “Oh, last time I bowled was in Secondary School”, “I haven’t bowled for don’t know how long liao,” etc. It was also Amber’s first time bowling as well. So we proceeded to have a game and I’ll leave the pictures to tell the results =P (Gutters were also cleaned by our bowling balls)

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In the evening, we had our separate events. Master Sng, Carnation-Mdm, Shaun-Sir and Amber got dressed and headed out for Mr Aaron Chong-Sir’s wedding dinner while Yuki-Mdm and Qi Zhao-Sir and I headed for dinner and grocery shopping. When we regrouped back in the apartment after dinner, we ended the night off with a movie into the early hours of the morning!

The next day, we had lunch at 1-Utama Shopping Centre before heading to the main highlight of the trip, an exchange training programme at Zest Martial Arts’ Headquarters in Jalan Sri Bintang.

When we reached, we were greeted by Andy-Sir, Ivan-Sir, Aaron-Sir and also found Dee Loh-Sir at the Dojang, who welcomed us with great warmth.

At the start of the class, a quick warm up session was conducted by Andy-Sir before heading into patterns. At first, the beginner patterns were touched upon, up to Yul-Gok, before the class was split to allow the 3rd Degrees and above to practice their respective patterns.

Next up were the 2nd Degrees, then the 1st Degrees and the rest of the class as we did patterns in descending order until we completed Joong-Gun whereupon a short break was given.

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From there we went on to kicking drills. Kicks such as downward and pick-shape kicks were practiced as we were made to kick higher and higher. Andy-Sir shared with us some techniques on using the hip-twisting motion to generate more power into the kicks. We did a few kicking drills, sparring drills as well as some free light contact sparring before ending the class with a photo session.

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After training, we quickly headed back to the apartment to wash up and pack up before meeting  Andy-Sir and some of the students for dinner at Lieong Kee Bak Kut Teh located in Kepong. The Bak Kut Teh was in a huge claypot with loads of meat, innards and vegetables and we all had a very hearty meal after a tiring training. After the dinner, we gave our thanks to Andy-Sir and his students for having us at their class. Master Sng presented him with a gift as a token of our appreciation.

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After that, Shaun-Sir drove us to the airport and the same flight cycle repeated and we were back in Singapore. All in all, I would like to thank the instructors and students of Zest Martial Arts Academy for the exchange trip. Special mention to Aaron-Sir for coming to train with us on the next day after his wedding banquet. To Master Sng for his guidance as well as initiating the trip. To Carnation-Mdm for coordinating all the flights and admin and liaising with the club in KL and not forgetting Shaun-Sir for all the chauffeuring, and allowing us to stay at his apartment for the trip.

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I look forward to the next overseas trip with Island Taekwon-Do Centre!

Taekwon,
Joel Mok

Written by Mr. Joel Mok, 2nd Degree Black Belt, ITF Singapore
© Island Taekwon-Do Centre 2017