I participated in a taekwondo tournament in Kendallville, Indiana this past weekend. It was so much fun. I earned two trophies, a first in Sparring, and a second in Forms. Which is neat - I have never received a trophy for a physical feat before. (I did get a trophy when I worked at McDonald's back in the 80's. We got first place in the McDonald's Olympics for Drive-Thru.) But it was nothing like this.
I was nervous, but not terrified. When we left the house at 6 a.m. I had already been up for an hour: getting uniforms ready, gear bags packed, food for the drive, things to do for the drive, etc. It took about 1 1/2 hours to get to Kendallville (just north of Ft. Wayne).
The morning was taken with opening ceremonies, Tiny Tiger competition (The Divine Miss M competed - she's 5), and waiting. Finally, at about 3:15 they called White, Orange & Yellow belts 18 & over. Kim & I were the last to compete - luckily everyone else was engaged when we went on the floor. Craig was judging, L was scorekeeping for Master Flotka, Haley, Lindsay and Fletch were competing. M & A were playing in a corner. (ack - I was a bit concerned about them, but they're good at keeping themselves amused without hurting anyone - or each other!)
No one else in our ring had ever been to a tournament before - so that was good. I was told later it looked like the "ring of moms" - I'm not sure how many of us had kids in the tournament - at least 4 out of the 6. The judge was patient, and kind, and patient. (he had to be, poor guy) I enjoyed doing my form - even though I messed up the last move. I was most nervous about sparring, although at our level it's just one-steps. One person acts as the attacker - does 2 moves & stops - and the other person goes through 5-8 defensive steps. Then the players switch. So, there is no contact - supposedly :) .
Actually, after we were finished, I was ready for more.
We watched a lot of others compete. The third degree (and above) black belts did some weapons-fighting (so much fun - like hitting each other with pool noodles, but with flair!) And we watched the judges get to compete. I'm beginning to understand how things work in TKD.
Afterwards, we ate at Pizza Hut with a couple of other Lansing-area car-loads. And then, the long drive home.
The next tournament is in Fort Wayne, Indiana on Sept. 12. I will be a camo-belt then, which means real sparring, not one-steps. I know what I get to do next! Lots of sparring practice.
I cannot wait.