Totally new member, looking for advice.

Discussion in 'The Dojang' started by coolsox, Jul 2, 2013.

  1. coolsox

    coolsox New Member

    Hi all,

    Rich here from West Midlands UK. I've been looking into Martial Arts for some time as a way to improve my health and fitness in an exciting way. Problem is, I am painfully shy and nervous. I was supposed to have started last Wednesday, but bottled out. I talk myself into doing it, then become troubled by thoughts of things going wrong, or looking stupid and then back out.

    I'm determined I'm going to start tomorrow. I know once I've done that first lesson I will be fine!

    Can I ask members here, what did you experience on your first lessons. What where your concerns before going and how did the reality differ.

    Many thanks in advance.
  2. Gazzer

    Gazzer Active Member

    Just do it :D
    Just relax and do what ever the instructor tells you and you have nothing to be nervous about and just do your best.
    Dont worry about anyone else there and dont try to stretch too hard and too fast its not a competition this is for you and you only so you can improve your self one step at a time.
    Its not going to happen quickly its going to take many years, the more you train the more every thing just "clicks" into place.
    Chris J likes this.
  3. Chris J

    Chris J Active Member

    ....and don't worry about being a little sore (or even a lot sore!) afterwards, it's your body's initial 'protest' at the new movements.
    And for the first few months, we all looked a little retarded. In this day and age there are many people that give up too easily, and are looking for any excuse to pack it in and quit. Nothing is too hard for the determined, if one man can do it, ANY man can do it.
    Gazzer likes this.
  4. Gazzer

    Gazzer Active Member

    A "little" sore lol... :eek:

    :) No pain no gain
  5. Brian

    Brian Member

    First off. honesty: you will probably be a little lost and off. You will probably feel silly and even stupid at times. The instructor may show you a front stance, tell you to get in a right front stance (right foot in front)and you may hop to a left one. You may miss the pads on kicks and hits, you may not even move the pads when you do hit, your partner may have to correct something you're doing, and the form you'll start learning may be like trying to put together a computer blindfolded in a dark room.

    All of this could happen. I know this, because all of it did happen to me. My first class I was lucky and unlucky enough to have a private lesson - no other adults showed up. So my two instructors had no distractions from the overweight, never did sports, brand new to actual martial arts me. I kicked at knee level and more than once missed completely. Several times I had to be reminded that left meant not-right. If my first attempts at doing white belt form looked anything remotely like it should have, it was rare enough to qualify for divine intervention. I am morally sure that when I left they looked at each other and mentally shook their heads and sighed.

    I, to put it bluntly, was terrible. As was everyone else in there and everywhere else their first day. No one walks in knowing everything, no one walks in and makes the instructors decide to retire in favor of the new student. Everyone will mess up. And everyone, if they are true martial artists, remembers that and knows that and never judges anyone to be a failure based onphysical stuff. (I will add though that if you walk in acting like you own the class, or bully, or argue, or cause troubles like that, that's an easy judgment call. I don't think you'll be like that. Neither should anyone else.) All those people making it look easy? They started where you did and were just as bad, if not worse, than your worst fear of how you will be.

    From that first day going on five years ago, I am now a second degree certified black belt and a certified instructor. If I can do it I know you can.

    You've already been brave enough to sign up. Now follow through and give it a shot.
    Gazzer likes this.
  6. coolsox

    coolsox New Member

    Thought I would update, I did finally pluck up the nerve and went along to my first class. It was an awesome experience but very overwhelming. I felt extremely sorry for the instructor assigned to me as i had no coordination and couldn't quite get to grips with some of the kicks. I was also shown my first pattern at the end which I also messed up. Can't really practice what I've been shown so far as I think my technique is off but I will continue to persevere with the classes. Certainly feeling the effects in my muscles today :)

    Was anybody else here truly awful at the start?
    Pat Thomson likes this.
  7. Gnarlie

    Gnarlie Well-Known Member

    Yes, absolutely, like a robot I was. Don't be too hard on yourself, just keep working to reach that high standard.
  8. Brian

    Brian Member

    Congrats. And as I said, yes I was, and worse. Keep at it, and in a few months you'll be the one telling others to keep it up and don't quit, because back in the day...
  9. Oerjan

    Oerjan Active Member

    I nearly knocked my self out as a New beginner With my own knee to my own face:p I never quit though, and I have come a long way since then (and have a long way to go but I have not kneed myself in the face lately so I am guessing I am going in the right direction:-D )
    Gnarlie likes this.
  10. Gnarlie

    Gnarlie Well-Known Member

    First rule of applied Taekwondo: hurt the other person more than yourself. :p
    Oerjan likes this.
  11. Oerjan

    Oerjan Active Member

    True Words for wisdom:)
  12. I originally started TKD 10 years ago. I was only there 5 months before I joined the Royal Navy so packed it in. I managed to get to 9th Kup.

    I restarted about 5 -6 months ago and remeber walking back in. My nerves were shot and I was 30 mins late as it took my that much time to work up the courage to go in. I finally did go in and found that I was all over the place. I did not remember a single thing about anything. I must of looked like a complete fool, I certainly felt like one.

    Everyone there was great. Everyone supported and helped no matter what grade they were. The instructor was brilliant and the patience everyone showed was awesome.

    I passed my grading last week after having to learn everything for 10th and 9th kup which I did find very hard, but I can not stress enough how much it is worth all the hard work. The feeling you get when you are told you have passed is awesome.

    MAny Thanks

    Pat Thomson likes this.
  13. Rugratzz

    Rugratzz Active Member

    I am really happy that you took the plunge.

    When I think back in the mists of time, I was like most really bad, I could not remember my left from right, I even resorted writing a little r on my right hand, I think if my instructor had asked my name I would have had to ask a friend. watching the others kicking at head hight I just thought WOW! I would have been lucky to hit the knee cap on a hobbit :(. As time went on things got better, people started to talk more, I could join in conversations. Trust me and the others here the only way now is up!!!.

    Dont worry about the muscles they will get used to it.

    Timothy Cooper likes this.
  14. coolsox

    coolsox New Member

    2nd class tonight. Hadn't been able to go for a couple of weeks as had quite a severe cold. Was far more nervous about tonight's class that my first but it turned out to be amazing! The only part I felt a little self conscious and out of my depth was during the warm up where they essentially got everyone partnered up and got one person to throw a random punch / kick, which was to be mirrored by the 2nd person. Not knowing any moves at this point made the task a little tricky. The rest of the lesson was far more enjoyable.

    For the first part we did the first pad drill. My technique is way off, but I am sure it will become more refined with time. That was followed by a short self defence class. Sadly I found the moves difficult to memorise so will have to take some time over them and then finally I was taught the four directional punch. Took a while for it to click but I got there in the end, but again it needs some refining!

    Today I finally felt that I could get better and found myself laughing with the group rather than shying away and feeling too self conscious.

    I know one thing though! I'm going to be very sore for a few days. Already I've got aches developing in places that have never ached before! First time ever I have done 10 push ups and 25 sit ups in one go. The instructor was so good he convinced me to keep going when ordinarily I would have given in!
  15. Finlay

    Finlay Active Member

    Great thst you started, sound like you are having a good time of it. everything take time to leanr and give it a while and new starts will be looking to you for advice,. Maybe people nervous about starting will also be looking to you for advice about starting TKD.

    As for my first class. I was a very unfit 16 year old. i couldn't run the length of the hall without turning purple. Tookme a while to get my fitness up. only after that i could start working on everything else
  16. Rugratzz

    Rugratzz Active Member

    "I am sure it will become more refined with time" sure will, you will find that in time you will be able to execute a technique well, but you will try to refine it even more, thats part of the art, always trying to improve on what you can do, and that will last a lifetime.

    You at the moment are being bombarded with different things, do this try that then add this to it, a little like trying to pat your head while rubbing your stomach, adding to that balancing on one foot, it will come together, honest ;).

    Self defence can cause problems, as there are normally a number of parts to it. Repetition, is the only way, again its only your second lesson don't expect to much. If there is something i don't get during the lesson, there is normally a little time either before or after a lesson where I ask someone to help me out. Any one of the higher grades worth their salt will be happy to help you. and a little one on one helps.

    Well done on the press-ups and sit ups, there are many people who start who would struggle to do half that. As for muscles, they will complain for a while, when you do a kick, say, there are a large number of muscles that are used, some are used all the time some are not, mostly they are the ones complaining, again with time you will feel less sore, a hot bath, helps them to relax, and ease the stiffness, maybe some gentle stretching, but again you will experience this, for a while what ever you do, don't over do it, just because your partner can kick to your head, does not mean you have to, if you can only kick to his waist so be it. height will come over time when you body becomes more flexible.

    Try this video, by Bill Wallace, he is a legend, and for a guy his age, he puts a lot of people many years younger to shame.

    There are three videos in that series:)

    A good instructor is a master at motivation, at the moment he/she is testing you a little (how far can I push this person) My eldest is thirteen, he can be pushed a little but he gets upset easily, my middle son 11, you can scream at him, tell him to stop training like a wimp, you can see in his face that he is going to prove you wrong and gets on with it. my youngest 6 you just need to look at him, and frown. So that three very different people, there are another 20 odd in the class.

    Keep your experiences coming, maybe start a new thread and update it, I am sure it would be great for other new members, and older ones alike. I know that you will get loads of advice, and help if you need it. :D

    coolsox likes this.

Share This Page