This weekend it was the National Welsh Open Championship down in Cardiff. A small team from Thames Valley TKD went down and they all did amazingly, bringing back lots of medals, so well done to all of you!
I have been working hard on improving a lot of things since the Euros and my main aim for the competition was to make sure I put into practise what I had been learning.
First on was patterns and they put the 2nd and 1st degree black belts together. I came up in round one against a very smart 2nd degree National Welsh squad member and the decision went her way. So as I already knew, there is a lot more early morning pattern practise needing to be done!
Next up was sparring and as I don’t cut weight for National competition, (as you weigh in on the day), I was up a category and into the -64kg division. Which also meant I’d brought a huge lunch box with me including, banana bread, lentils and veg, overnight oats, and walnut, date & spirulina energy bombs! Here is the banana bread, which I based on Deliciously Ella’s recipe but changed several of the ingredients and hence had to taste test the night before with a delicious cup of peppermint and liquorice teapigs tea:
I made my way through to the final and again came up against the same National Welsh squad member, who represents them at this category for International competitions. So knew she was going to make me work hard for it. It was close and we drew after the first two rounds. This meant an extra round and this time I managed to settle a lot more and really execute everything I had been practising to get a unanimous decision in my favour.
Next up was special technique and they offered us the flying side kick. As the coaches at Thames Valley TKD know, jumping isn’t exactly a strong point of mine. However, the plyometrics training I’ve been doing is clearly paying off as managed to get a silver! Need to start putting more practise into all the special techniques as maybe I can now jump that little bit higher!
Lastly was the power test and I tried to qualify with the elbow, but unfortunately didn’t break it. Again it’s another area I need to put a lot more practise in to improve.
As time flies by, I know there is only so much I can focus working on before the Worlds and have really been concentrating on my sparring. So the real highlight of my day was to be able to execute what I had been practising and to be able to do it against such a good opponent was the icing on the cake. Thank you again to all the coaches, who have been helping me and in particular Mr Dilley who hopefully I made proud pulling off the hook kick! Now it’s back to training and working hard to continue to improve more.