ANNUAL TAEKWON-DO CHAMPIONSHIPS 2017

The Island Taekwon-Do Centre Annual Championships 2017 was a great experience for our family, and most certainly one of the highlights of our family life!

It was held on 25th March, in the Singapore University of Technology & Design (SUTD), as part of Island Taekwon-Do Centre’s 25th Anniversary events.

Annual Championships - Mr & Mrs Stevean Goh (1)Image Source: MLFoto / Fung Man Lok

2 years ago, it was just a dream for me (who had prior experience in Taekwon-Do 27 years ago) to even think of picking it up again. Today, not only has the whole family started training… all 4 of us took part in the recent ITC Annual Championships!

We started the day early, reaching the Indoor Sports Hall in SUTD by 7.30am for the weigh-in. The hall was big with 2 rings, a stage, and colourful, tiered bucket seats. We arrived in a light and festive mood, but then we noticed that the competitors from overseas who had arrived even earlier, had already changed into their doboks and were intently warming up, which made us realise how serious they were taking the competition! This made us want to take the opportunity to compete more earnestly.

Annual Championships - Mr & Mrs Stevean Goh (2)Image Source: MLFoto / Fung Man Lok

After the officials’ briefing, we were gathered to start the opening ceremony. Master Daniel Sng, our President and Chief Instructor, gave a speech, followed by Shaun Sir, the chairperson of the Championships. They gave us words of encouragement and a broader perspective on competitions and Taekwon-Do. Master Sng also gave out souvenirs to the overseas guests. It is also the first time that ITC has invited foreign participants to the Annual Championships.

Annual Championships - Mr & Mrs Stevean Goh (3)Image Source: MLFoto / Fung Man Lok

We then took the participants’ and umpires’ oaths, followed by a short demonstration by our ITC members. The demonstration turned out to be a skit of a young child and her mother fighting away robbers. It was both entertaining and amazing to watch our young Amber beating up 3 armed robbers!

Annual Championships - Mr & Mrs Stevean Goh (4)Image Source: MLFoto / Fung Man Lok

After the demonstration, we were gathered to take group photographs, before kicking off the competition events with the Individual Patterns categories.

AC2017_01

First to go was the kids and they both had to compete in the Junior Individual Patterns categories. Competition from all the foreign participants was stiff. Our eyes opened to see how their every move, even at the junior levels, were precise, powerful and graceful. Our kids grew nervous, and my son, Luke even made a mistake. But thankfully, their hard work did not go to waste as they both received bronze medals for their respective events.

Annual Championships - Mr & Mrs Stevean Goh (6)Image Source: MLFoto / Fung Man Lok

Annual Championships - Mr & Mrs Stevean Goh (7)

Shortly after, it was my turn up against fellow ITC compatriot Thomas, and I think we both put up a good fight! We were familiar with the ITC members’ styles as we had attended the competition trainings, but we definitely learnt a lot observing the foreign practitioners.

Annual Championships - Mr & Mrs Stevean Goh (8)Image Source: MLFoto / Fung Man Lok

Annual Championships - Mr & Mrs Stevean Goh (9)Image Source: MLFoto / Fung Man Lok

Next up was the Team Patterns category where my entire family participated in, in two different teams. Each team comprised of 3 members and everyone had to perform their chosen pattern together with their coordinated movements. Out of the 9 teams, my OPT group was definitely the oldest amongst the kids and teenagers!

Annual Championships - Mr & Mrs Stevean Goh (10)

We were mesmerised by our creative competitors, how they executed breaks and the various choreography, we never imagined possible. It was a most nerve-wrecking time for all of us, as we sat there, waiting for our turn. I had not felt this competitive stress for a long time! We did not win anything for this event, but learnt a lot and enjoyed watching the spectacular patterns display of each team. Congratulations to the teams who won this hotly-contested event!

Annual Championships - Mr & Mrs Stevean Goh (11)Image Source: MLFoto / Fung Man Lok

The final category was the most anticipated – Sparring! My daughter, Faith was up first in the Junior Females’ group. I was very nervous and at the same time proud, watching intensely throughout all her matches as she managed to punch and kick her way to the gold medal!

Annual Championships - Mr & Mrs Stevean Goh (12)Image Source: MLFoto / Fung Man Lok

We were watching and enjoying really close and intense fights in the various categories. Everyone was cheering for their favourite players and enjoying themselves both inside and outside the competition rings. Once again, we witnessed with wonder how the foreign participants fought, with different and effective fighting styles. Not discounting all our ITC competitors who also put up extraordinary effort in the rings. It was great to see everyone suddenly fighting a lot harder than they do in the dojang!

Annual Championships - Mr & Mrs Stevean Goh (13)Image Source: MLFoto / Fung Man Lok

My sparring event was the last category of the day. I had a good match against fellow ITC competitor Dr Tan, who fought the better fight.

Annual Championships - Mr & Mrs Stevean Goh (14)Image Source: MLFoto / Fung Man Lok

As the other Ring already completed their matches, all eyes were on the exciting finals between Mr Thomas and Dr Tan where they tied in the first 2 rounds, having go into a third round! The two men fought even harder despite their exhaustion, and put on a really tough and exciting match. Dr Tan finally emerged the winner, amidst a chorus of cheers and high praise for both competitors’ valiant fights.

Annual Championships - Mr & Mrs Stevean Goh (15)

It was a truly enriching experience to see each of our family members taking part in all the different events. As parents, we beamed with pride seeing our two little ones being able to complete, much less compete in their various categories, and I am sure the other parents and coaches of the other participants were also proud of their participants’ performances!

There were many other important lessons to be learnt from all the visiting coaches and it was also good to see the high standards from the various countries.

Personally as a Dad, I am proud to be able to lead by example to take part in and even win some medals to encourage my kids.

We are very happy with the Annual Championships experience and want to thank Master Daniel Sng and all the organisers for hosting such an exciting and wonderful event. We are looking forward to attending more ITC events in the future!

Taekwon,
Mr & Mrs Stevean Goh

Written by Mr. and Mrs. Stevean Goh, 6th Gup, ITF Singapore
© Island Taekwon-Do Centre 2017

Leave a Reply