So if you saw on the calendar that it was stretching week you would think a big portion of the class would be spent on stretching right?!?! After all stretching to improve flexibility is important and we need to be flexible for a variety of techniques we have to do in TKD. Well let me tell you how my class went…yep starting at the end of the day….
There were 15 of us in class and the age was from 13 (my daughter and another gal) to 49 (me and my TKD buddy). Average age was 18 does that help you visualize? It would have been younger but thanks to me and my buddy we skewed the curve. Yes I am always the oldest on the mat unless the Grandmaster is out. We start off with running around the mat. We go in circles and reverse for a good 5 minutes. It is hot and stuffy as the windows have not been open all classes and it is 7:45 at night. Eventually we stop running and have to do three sets of 10 jumping jacks, 10 push ups and 10 sit ups. OK not too hard but yikes its getting warm. Then we go back to running for another 5-6 minutes. We then stop for 20 squat thrusts. Now I cannot do a squat thrusts as my knees are full of arthritis and don’t bend like they should, so I do a modified exercise. During the 11th rep there was a LOUD crack and the Master Instructor looked at me in horror and said “Stop don’t do anymore!!!” I laughed and said “I’m fine but yes I have arthritis so that will happen.” So I did jumping jacks while everyone finished up. More running around for another 3-4 minutes then she said we could stop and stretch. Well that lasted about 2 minutes then we spent 10 minutes doing our forms. After forms we had to break into groups of three and line up on the mat. One in the middle and the two end people holding targets. The middle person runs from side to side doing repetitions until the Master Instructor says switch in which case they take a target and the vicious cycle repeats itself. Finally 55 minutes later (our class is 45 minutes long) she tells us to stop and gives us 5 minutes of stretching. Everyone was exhausted and were making jokes about every part of their body hurting including their hair. Me and my male TKD buddy made our obligatory sweat angels on the mat and at class end had to clean it up. Yep so gross!!!
Soo what about the other classes. Well the first class of higher belts did not do as much running. They spent a lot of time on forms because for some reason they all seemed to not be putting too much effort into it. Their stances looked like garbage and the one kid I had was outright refusing to accept corrections. He ended up getting into trouble at the end because I would make the correction and he would go back to sloppy as soon as I moved away and the Master Instructor saw him doing it. They did really well at line drill combinations and some were laughing when they messed up so it was a lot of fun even if I did take a punch or two due to poor aim.
The Mighty Mights did a bunch of line drills and were really good about it. They ran in a circle as well, baby crawled and tried really hard to stay in a line when running. Once or twice a kid fell and we had to scoop them up to avoid the domino effect. It was funny though to see them so competitive and want to get ahead of each other when in the line. They were super good listeners though so they got a lot of praise from the head instructor.
The low belt older children were not such good listeners. While they did not have to run, they seemed to not want to answer the instructor when she asked questions. They did a crap load of pushups before they finally caught on. They too did forms and were much better than the higher belts. I was doing a one on one as she was the only orange belt but she wanted to be excellent in her for so took every small correction to heart but not personally. I really do like working with her she is super sweet. Line drills went well for them and they too did really well on their combinations. They had less complicated combos but some were really struggling with putting them together but all were really good about keeping at it and not getting frustrated.
So overall not too much stretching was involved in stretching week. I will go back tonight for a bit to help with family classes and see what interesting warm ups await tonight….did I mention….oh my feet.