Children’s Competition Development
The Xtreme Team competition development program creates winners.
Over more than 15 years I have developed the Xtreme Team competition training program for children. This is made up of the junior squad training sessions, held monthly, 11 months of the year. Then there are the Mini Tournaments and the next level up are the TKD Impact Open competitions.
The Xtreme Team programs helps to develop children to perform at their very best. In the squad sessions we train the children to the highest level for competition sparring and flying kicks. But we are trying to produce more than just winners. It is far more than just competition training, we are building confidence for competitions, we build a child’s self-confidence and self-esteem. In the training sessions we work on fitness and drills as well as a lot of sparring and flying kicks.
Attending a competition for the first time can be a very daunting experience. Through attending the Mini Tournaments we teach the children all the rules and etiquette of Taekwon-Do competitions. We also teach children the right way to deal with winning and losing. We don’t want cocky winners and we want those that lose to learn to persevere through and learn how to win. Over time the children learn to win with quiet confidence respected by their peers. Those that are not so successful learn to lose with dignity, and even when they lose a round they maintain the respect of their peers. Teaching children that losing isn’t the end of the world but another learning experience and to pick themselves and deal with defeat.
In the Brighton Mini Tournaments we teach both children and parents how competitions are run. To teach both children and parents the rules and protocols for tournaments as well as give children experience. Competition experience and confidence on the mats is one of the most important ingredients to success. Overcoming those initial nerves at each tournament by making them a more every-day experience. By simply getting on the mats and going through their patterns or sparring competitively, in a tournament situation helps reduce the anxiety and boost their confidence.
With the Mini Tournaments, although we keep the competitive element, we keep it as real as possible, we emphasise that it is the taking part that matters not the winning or losing. Be successful in competitions is boosted by more and more experience and by having frequent Mini Tournaments we achieve this. It is important for children to do as many as possible.
The TKD Impact Open competitions are much bigger tournaments where there will be over 100 children taking part from all over the south of England and further afield. This is when taking part in tournaments starts to become much more serious. The squad sessions and Mini Tournaments are designed to prepare the children for this next step up. However, hopefully after their experience in Mini Tournaments this step can be taken confidently in their stride. But these competitions are just another stepping-stone to the much bigger competitions such as the Holland Cup and then the European and World Cups.
One day, like many Brighton & Hove students they may even get selected to compete for England, in the European or World Championships. The number of Brighton students who have been selected for England has proven the success of the Xtreme Team. We have had Brighton & Hove students selected for England every year for the last 16 years and for the last 3 years we have had 4 students who trained up to black belt at Brighton & Hove Taekwon-Do, selected for England.
The Xtreme Team Program is all about a gradient approach to developing children for competition but also teaching competitive sparring to the highest level. The program is there to build even greater confidence, self-esteem and develop resilience
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