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December Black Belt Testing in Brno 2016

TTT
  259
Black belts examinations
Jan Dvořáček, 14.12.2016 – On the Sunday 11th of December 2016 there was black belt testing taking place after the Saturday national seminar. For my taste the attendance was really plentiful since there were 27 aspirants to being testing for higher degree. Among them was one applicant for the 4th degree, two for the 3rd degree and the rest was divided approximately one half for the 1st degree and one half for the 2nd degree.

There were four people from our school who were trying to gain higher black belt degree. Míra Novák was tested for the 1st degree, Pavel Zavadil and Jan Dvořáček for the 2nd degree and Pavel Šnábl for the 3rd degree.

The examination board which was supposed to make the final decision of our results was led by grandmaster Hwang Ho-Yong the 9th degree. The other members were master Rostislav Kaňka the 7th degree, master Martin Zámečník the 7th degree and Milan Prokeš the 5th degree. The assessors were Petr Pařík the 4th degree and the president of Czech Taekwon-Do federation, Marek Lazor the 4th degree. Jan Chaloupka the 4th degree was assigned to be the commander of the testing. His two family members were also the applicants for the 2nd degree black belt testing.

The testing began in the traditional style. After the line-up the 1st degree applicants started coming in couples or threesomes before the committee and showing their skills in patterns. At first each of them performed the patterns and then the couples began showing their sparring and self-defence. After that, everybody one by one performed the special techniques and power breaking. At the very end all of them stood before the committee and were examined for their knowledge of the theory and history of Taekwon-Do ITF. Testing of the 2nd degree was performed the same way. Because of the low number of applicants the testing for 3rd degree and the 4th degree were joined together. At first, the aspirants to 3rd degree testing performed their patterns and then the aspirant to the 4th degree. The rest of the testing, sparring with a knife, self-defence, special techniques and power breaking went on the same way.

Altogether I sensed the testing as very placid matter, even though the applicants were visibly a little nervous. Only during the 1st degree testing at the parts of special techniques and power breaking the grandmaster began to urge everybody to be faster. Perhaps he wanted to end in time to manage other duties that day. But I think that due to his urging most of the applicants started being nervous a little bit more and so they did not show the performance they expected.

Performances at the testing ranged from really excellent to those very weak concerning mostly applicants for 1st and 2nd degrees. Not only that most of them did not manage to break the wooden boards during power breaking but grandmaster had to tell them how to position themselves before performing the technique. Considering it was black belt testing I was really stunned by that. The more I was surprised when I heard the results for everybody got the same score which was mostly 65 points. Only a few gained only 64 points for example Míra Novák from our school. It was very surprising for most of us since performances of many other who gained higher score were much weaker than the one of Míra. The highest score got Pavel Zavadil also the member of our school. He got 66 points and thanks to this he was awarded for the best performance of this testing. I must admit that he really deserved it.

If I should evaluate my own performance, I could say I was satisfied with that. But after seeing the video of my patterns I have to admit that should really lower my stances especially sitting stance and L-stance. The most I was afraid of knife sparring but eventually it did not end up very bad. Pavel Zavadil was attacking me in sensible way so it was not so hard. I am most satisfied with my special techniques and power breaking. But I was told that I broke everything very quickly so nobody could catch me on camera and that´s why I have almost no feedback. They caught only my jumping spinning side piercing kick, where I should work on my jumping. From power breaking I got just my front fist punch which was all right and side piercing kick. There I should improve my hips motion. Unfortunately I did not see my reverse turning kick but my heel, which means the correct hitting spot, is still a little bit painful so I presume the kick was all right.

I´d like to congratulate everybody on their passing the test, especially my three teammates whose performances were really amazing.

I am looking forward to meeting you in a few years at another testing.
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