day 2305 – fourth dan cert

retrieved my fourth dan certificate from the grandmaster during the colour belt test. when i first took on taekwondo, i never thought i would have such a long journey, never thought it would develop into a career. it was a long and hectic test, but everything went well up to and until i got kicked in the hand holding a board. it was a blur after that because i couldn’t stop thinking about how badly my hand was injured. i tried to finish running the rest of the test grasping one ice pack in hand

day 2222 – fourth bound

after a full day at the dojo, i walked away with a fourth dan certificate. though i was satisfied with most, i was unhappy about one thing. i was bitter my x-out didn’t get the three attempts that all breakings get because he was worried i’d hurt myself. if held firmly, i was confident in breaking it. i’m still pretty proud i went for it considering the roller coaster i had been on the past few weeks. it was a good attempt and maybe the best attempt i had with boards. i’ll keep practicing and do it better one of these days for redemption. i’m just relieved this is all over. my beaten body full of gashes and bruises deserves the break after two long days at the dojo and of course all the work i’ve put into my x-out. definitely a smart decision to take tuesday as a flex day

day 2219 – x-out breaking

with crunch time in mind, i had to work my way through some back tuck troubles before i can think of anything else. after getting the consistency down, x-outs were back in the discussion. had a few good attempts with foam targets and acetate sheets; thought that was good enough progress from training. i wasn’t thinking of going for boards today, but it only happened because of them giving me the extra push. honestly if i hadn’t progressed to to boards either today or tomorrow, i would definitely call off the x-out breaking option

day 2217 – nothing left

i’m feeling upset and beat because it’s crunch time and i can’t seem to land anything, not even my basic back tuck. the test is in a matter of days and my x-out feels like it’s fallen apart. it’s not a required board breaking, but i have been yearning to do this and if i was only going to take the fourth dan test once in my life, i better make it be something i’ll remember. i wanted to be proud of what i did and not just do the bare minimum. at this rate, i’m not sure if it’s going to happen

day 2215 – sidekick break

did a high sidekick breaking just for fun. not bad for someone who hardly stretches and doesn’t put in the time to practice breaking anymore. probably haven’t kicked a board for real since my last test over four years ago. i need to do some last minute cramming for the boards that i’m about to break in a matter of days. i’m pressing for that x-out and hoping it is ready by then. aside from stick-knife and stick-stick self defense, i should probably review and shake off the rust for all the step sparring, self defense and poomsae

day 2179 – killarney demo team

after long debate, this is the group i brought to walk with the dragon to represent the branch. it is also the first year that killarney students will have their own program separate from the main school. i opted to not wear my uniform to avoid the need to appear on stage. luckily for us, our grandmaster was out of town so we can run this show with a little less stress. it was more of an eye-opener for most as it’s their first time stepping on stage to do any taekwondo demonstration. proud of these kids for having the courage to do so and completing it

day 1834 – kukkiwon demo

kukkiwon national team visits vancouver again third year in a row. on one hand i’m stoked to watch their demonstration expecting nothing less of spectacular. on the other hand i’m disappointed i won’t be able to participate in their training because my shoulder is still failing me like no other. it hurts not being able to take on this rare training, but i had to be present to satisfy the requirement of being there for my students. either way, the koreans made it spectacular with their spin kicks, multiple kicks and apple breaking

day 1685 – board cuts

the aftermath of a blackbelt test i didn’t want to work. it didn’t bode well from the beginning and only got worse when i’m told by the grandmaster to hold a board when he knows very well my hand isn’t healed for it. it really has become a hostile environment i’m tired of bearing his unreasonable and unethical ways. it has caused me too much grief and too much sleep and i’m no longer willing to go the distance to suit his needs while i sacrifice my happiness. either his attitude has to change and respect has to be there, or that’s the end of an era

day 662 – third dan status

image

it was a uber long test, but i made it. from the moment the test began to the end of the test, i don’t believe i had a chance to sit down. i was up testing and doing my stuff from the very start while the grandmaster and many of the instructors and students watched. taking all components of the test in one go is a massive undertaking, but i knew that i wouldn’t have done it any other way. there were things that i should have and could have done better; but i can live my performance given the preparation time i had prior to this test and being fully exhausted with the amount of things i performed while having little rest throughout. i was beyond drained and overworked when the promotion test was all wrapped up. i am truly grateful to all those instructors who got me to where i am and made it all possible. could never have imagined how far i would go when i first started this journey. i am officially a third dan blackbelt!!