1st Competition for my kid

Discussion in 'Taekwondo Sparring' started by Chossy Mills, May 13, 2012.

  1. Chossy Mills

    Chossy Mills New Member


    My eldest daughter (7) has her first competition comming up in 2 weeks and i was wondering what was the best way to help boost her confidence before the competition.
    One minute she is brimming with confidence then the smallest thing can knock her for six.

    She stands a great chance of winning her ability and techneque are very good, she was singled out by a mulitple world champ and his trainer at a muay thai class (she studies muay thai as well and went to a new gym with her elder cousins as my sister booked the wrong gym and they where shocked how good she is (and her 5 year old sister) .

    She has been training for about 2 years on and off (we had to spend some time in SE Asia so she missed some gradings) she started with the kids course which has its own grading system now she does what i would call proper TKD but has not progressed in gradings as we have been to and fro Asia over the last 6 months so she has not been learning her patterns (i took the kick pads with us so she has not stopped doing padwork).

    Some days in sparring she is untouchable and others she is a punch bag where you can see she has lost all confidence.

    She desperatly wants to compete she is a very caring child and after seeing how her family in asia live and how bad kids her age have it out there she wants to compete in TKD and Muay Thai to raise money to help her new friends so they can goto school not work ect..

    My other two kids are completly opposite full of confidence all the time it just my eldest.
    Her TKD instructor is quite happy for her to compete (he would not let her if he tought she was not ready).

    So i was wondering whats the best way forward with her ?

    Let her compete and hope she does not have a melt down.
    Dont let her compete.

    Like i said her instructor is more than happy her skill set is good enough.

    So if you guys have any tips/advise/info as parents/instructors i would love to hear from you.


  2. Christina

    Christina New Member

    Nothing. I treated it just as if it were sparring for class. i asked him if he wanted to do it...he said yes, and I helped him get geared up.....he has down syndrome, and I was a little upset that the kid clobbered him, but it was worth it for William to experience sparring and it helps him reach higher. [​IMG]
  3. Kevin

    Kevin Administrator Staff Member

    I'm not a parent myself (yet) though I think the confidence thing is just a problem that many kids suffer from. They take everything from heart. Our younger students are always winning medals. One minute they're on top of the world but when they lose they look crushed and many think they were cheated (I think the cheating allegations come from the parents who don't know anything about the point system and think their kids are perfect).

    With regards to the competition, I would tell your daughter to just go and have fun. Try and ensure her that's there's no pressure and explain that sometimes you win and sometimes you lose. Perhaps even mention that everyone loses at one point and it helps them become a better martial artist. I'd be inclined to go down this route as if she gets bummed about losing it could discourage her from training.

    I'm not sure why she is brimming with confidence one minute and getting knocked out the next. Perhaps she loses confidence quickly if things don't go her way i.e. if she her kick doesn't land when it usually does or when the other person starts beating her. Again, I think this is more of an age thing. All kids are the same..I'm sure I was no different. :)
    alan thompson likes this.
  4. Master Fahy

    Master Fahy Active Member

    Speaking as a parent of three Black belt Children (all grown now) I remember their first competition and the results were two won and the other lost. The ride home was a long one for one of them. But she remembered that and won the next time around (she was six at the time). I being a Master Instructor have been through this many a time. Tell your child to enjoy the experience win or lose you still (love them) and think their tops!
    alan thompson likes this.
  5. Chossy Mills

    Chossy Mills New Member

    Thanks for your replies some great advise i will let you know how she gets on
  6. Chossy Mills

    Chossy Mills New Member

    Well just got back and things did not go to well i am afraid she quit halfway through, shame but what can you do.
    I dont want to push her so i will leave her for a week then try and find out what went wrong.
    Just going to give her a cuddle now.
  7. Master Fahy

    Master Fahy Active Member

    Sorry to hear that! At that age, it is really no need to worry, just let her enjoy herself! She should be all right after a day or two.
  8. lorraine

    lorraine Member

    Hi Chossy ,i have five kids aged between 7 and 20. They all started training when they were about 5. They have all competed in tournaments , my eldest ,now a 3rd dan loved sparring and has competed in South Korea and Germany,.My youngest doesnt want to fight in a tournament yet but enjoys competing in the poomsae. I think its important to stress the importance of taking part as opposed to winning as if the emphases is on winning it can put too much pressure on them. Whats important is that they stick with it so they need to enjoy their training. My second eldest ,now 17 and a 1st dan gave up training when he was around 13.It became a battle to get him to go and i didnt want to force him .A year later his younger sibblings were catching up with him in (belt colour).He soon started again!
  9. The Outsider

    The Outsider New Member

    My daughter was 7 for her first tournament with only about 3 months of TKD training. She did well at the poomse (silver) and got absolutely killed during her sparring match. That initial loss really got her down... so much so that she doubted that she wanted to continue doing TKD. Even my wife (who has no MA background at all) doubted that she should continue.

    I got her to continue training and into another tournament the following spring (about 5 months later) at the USAT State Championship where she took home gold in sparring. After that, she has been competing on a regular basis. I think she has done about 20 tournaments in the last 2 years.

    Note that she has not won every tournament... Losses are tough on a kid's ego, but they are also a life lessons. The lesson is about courage and standing up after you get knocked down. I always say to my daughter, "You can't win every time, but you can't lose every time either."

    I've known prodigy kids who never suffered a tournament loss until they are fighting in black belt division and they get so demoralized that they don't want to continue. Usually the best long term players are the ones who struggle through the losses. They are also the ones to appreciate the small victories along the way more!

Share This Page