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Taekwondo

Instructing – a privilege that can be taken for granted


Let’s face it, when you’re feeling ill, down, tired, grumpy or just plain lazy, teaching of any kind can be a chore. When what you’re teaching is as physical as most martial arts, and as athletic at Taekwondo can be, motivation can be as hard to find as hen’s teeth.

This weekend, it was hammered home to me, what a privilege it is to be able to teach martial arts to people. I was invited to go to Cork and give two seminars, as well as assist on a kids’ grading, by my close friend Paul O’Leary of Rebel Martial Arts.

Not only did I get to travel to Cork and do nearly eight hours of personal training with Paul, but I was able to cover my costs by doing these seminars. There aren’t that many ‘hobbies’ where people get to be paid to do what they love.

Not only that, there are very few hobbies where people place their trust and even their physical well being into your hands. at these seminars, they were giving me carte blanche to grab their children, shout at them and – in the case of the adults – hurt them quite a lot. Not injure mind you, but hurt them. And all of this was done with willing and a smile.

Think about that for a minute. Complete strangers come to your club and put their physical and menal well-being not your heads on a regular basis. Some are complete strangers, people who may not even have heard of you from friends or relatives but who did a random search on the Internet and decided to train with you. Taking it further, I guarantee that some of ese people will have been thorough a traumatic experience and are looking for someone who can teach them the skills they beleive they lack.

Not only do they do that, they pay you what could be large sums of money to some on a regular basis. All,to do something that you have to love in the first place because you reached the standard required to become an instructor.

So, next time you’re full of flu and cursing the rain sleeting down onto you, just think about the people who put their trust in you to teach them, hurt them, and improve their health and well-being.

About mattsylvester

Father of two beautiful daughters and married to the beautiful Karen, Matthew has been reading and writing fantasy and science fiction since he first read the Hobbit at the age of 7. Matthew was Features Editor, Technical Consultant and regular columnist for magazines such as ‘Fighters’, ‘Combat’, ‘TKD & Korean Martial Arts’ and ‘Traditional Karate’. These are the four leading martial arts magazines in the United Kingdom. He is also the author of the critically acclaimed 'Practical Taekwondo: Back to the Roots', which has been sold around the world. With regard to his martial arts background he has been studying martial arts since 1991. In 1995 he hosted Professor Rick Clark of the ADK and since then has been studying pressure points and their uses in the martial arts and on the street (initially as a Special Constable and as a Door Supervisor). All of this practical hands-on experience means that he is uniquely placed to write fight scenes that are not only plausible but some of which are based on personal or anecdotal experience. Matthew has had a number of short stories published by Fringe Works, KnightWatch Press, Anderfam Press and Emby Press.

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