Black Belt Test

On June 18 and 20, 2013, I embarked on a test that was nearly two years in the making. I was invited by my instructor, Angel, to test for my black belt in Taekwondo (TKD). I knew about the test about 6 weeks ahead, which enabled me to train much harder and focus my time in the areas that I was lacking in. Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday I would be at 24 hr fitness Β doing cardio for about 45 minutes and then I would work on my Poomsae (forms) in the Group X room for about another 45 minutes. Eventually I added doing the same on Tuesday and Thursdays as well as the usual TKD training we’d do in class. On June 17th I did a light cardio workout and ran through my Poomsae, and realized I was indeed ready. I wasn’t nervous, I knew what I needed to do, I practiced, I visualized the self-defense moves, and how I’d spar. I was good to go. Bring it on!

On Tuesday at 5:30 PM, I show up to Black Eagle ready to go. Below is the agenda for the two-day test, each day was about 2 hours.

Agenda for the 2 day test

Agenda for the 2 day test

For the first day you can see we did kicks, blocks/strikes, Poomsae 1-4 and sparring. I was so glad and relieved that I didn’t know we were doing sparring Tuesday. It was one of the areas I was nervous about. Not that I couldn’t do it, but was I conditioned enough to do it. So I was very happy to not know that I was going to be doing it. I would have been a ball of nerves with just that knowledge. πŸ˜‰
After warming up we jumped right in. After a bit, I think everyone relaxed and got in a rhythm and that was good for everyone. It felt like a regular class, except with an audience, judges, video cameras (mine) and a photographer (my awesome sister shot all of the following). So now I will take you on the journey of my black belt test.

Lined up to bow in. Even split of boys and girls testing, 8 total.

Lined up to bow in. Even split of boys and girls testing, 8 total.

Cross Block chamber

Demoing our blocks: Cross Block chamber

Doing front snap kicks down the mats.

Doing front snap kicks down the mats.

Finally the nerves are gone, and smiles are showing!

Finally the nerves are gone, and smiles are showing!

Jump front kicks!

Jump front kicks, ignore my face (it’s awful). I really loathe jump kicks because my knees hate me when I do them… Sad thing is, I feel awesome when I do them. πŸ™‚

Flying side kicks were the last kick to demo before we moved to the paddles. My sister got a great shot here!

Flying side kicks were the last kick to demo before we moved to the paddles. My sister got a great shot here!

Kicking on the paddles, this is the butterfly kick, where you do a roundhouse and then spin (butterfly) into another roundhouse with the same foot.

Kicking on the paddles, this is the butterfly kick, where you do a roundhouse and then spin (butterfly) into another roundhouse with the same foot.

Doing our Poomsae on Day 1.

Doing our Poomsae on Day 1.

I didn’t get many good shots of the sparring, most were blurry and frankly all of mine sucked, you’d only see my back. So I am not sharing them. But I have a load on my personal website and I’ll share the link at the end. πŸ™‚

Now on to day 2, June 20th. First up was Poomsae then on to self-defense then board breaks.

Doing Taeguek 5, Oh Jang. This move is a target elbow strike.

Doing Taeguek 5, Oh Jang. This move is a target elbow strike.

Gun defense, how to strip a gun away from an attacker.

Gun defense, how to strip a gun away from an attacker.

How do you get out of a choke when you are pinned against a wall? Push the attackers arms one way and step the opposite.

How do you get out of a choke when you are pinned against a wall? Push the attackers arms one way and step the opposite.

???????????

Wrist Locks

Axe Kick board break. This photo was taken by Chandler and is the only shot of me actually breaking a board. We had to do 3 wood boards (3/4" thick pine) and then 3 rapid breaks on the rebreakable boards. We ran out of time and only were able to do 2 of the 3 wood boards, so 5 breaks total. I broke all of them.

Axe Kick board break. This photo was taken by Chandler and is the only shot of me actually breaking a board. We had to do 3 wood boards (3/4″ thick pine) and then 3 rapid breaks on the rebreakable boards. We ran out of time and only were able to do 2 of the 3 wood boards, so 5 breaks total. I broke all of them.

Setting up for my 3 breaks in a row: Knifehand, step turn back kick and ridgehand.

Setting up for my 3 breaks in a row: Knifehand, step turn back kick and ridgehand. Ended up having a couple great bruises heading to Hawaii (wrist, side of hand and elbow). No pain, no black belt, right?

My broken boards that I broke with an Axe kick and an Elbow break.

My broken boards that I broke with an Axe kick and an Elbow break.

We didn’t know if we passed as we left the Dojo Thursday night. I suspected that I had passed, I felt like I rocked the whole test. Where I goofed, I corrected, where I didn’t know, I focused my mind, where I felt like I couldn’t do it or finish, I dug down deep and continued. I felt strong! Β Now it was time to pack and head for my first vacation without my boys (all 3)! I had a flight at 10 the next morning and I wanted to weigh in at Weight Watchers before I headed to the airport. But before I could crash, I looked at Facebook…

Thursday night after 9 PM I checked Facebook before I finished packing for Hawaii, and found this post from Black Eagle!!! We all passed!

A post from Black Eagle, Thursday night; We all passed!

I took off to Hawaii, a Black Belt! When I got home I ordered my belt and got it the following week (last week).

My belt rack that I made, now complete!

My belt rack that I made, now complete!

Name and the 1st Dan bar on my belt (as you progress, you get more bars).

Name and the 1st Dan bar on my belt (as you progress, you get more bars).

The Korean on my belt, It says Taekwondo and Black Eagle.

The Korean on my belt, It says Taekwondo and Black Eagle (sorry, it’s a cell phone pic-hence my remote).

I have yet to get a shot of me wearing this amazing piece of black cloth and gold thread. But when I do, I’ll post it!

Here’s the link to the huge gallery of shots that were taken. I will add video eventually, but I will need to sit down and go through 4 hours of video first. And frankly, I am not really wanting to sit and do it all right now. It’s too nice out! So there it is! I know I haven’t elaborated enough and I can and probably will edit this with some more thoughts along the way.

blog siggy

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s