Sunday, March 04, 2007

TKD Parties/BB Parties

I had some pictures of yesterday's black belt dinner, but they accidentally got deleted off the camera.

I wonder how many dojangs do social activities as well as TKD practice. Ours has both. Seems like about once a month, there's something fun to do outside class--a party at the dojang, dinner out, a party at someone's house, a trip.

Yesterday, the black belts had barbecue at a local restaurant. It was mostly social, with some business thrown in. The business: deciding on our next social events! There's definitely another black belt dinner planned, after the next test. And Justin suggested ice skating at the local rink--that would be fun for the kids . . . and those of us adults who love to skate! I hope we do both.

Maybe social events seem unnecessary to some martial artists, but I suppose that depends on the reason one does martial arts.

At our dojang, we don't just work out together; we work together, too. We do work days at the dojang--cleaning before every test, of course, and a group has been working sporadically on a renovating a new women's changing room.

We play together, too--at parties, roller-skating rinks, on day-trips around the state.

Some people don't participate in the "extracurricular activities." Maybe they are too busy to include TKD in their social life. Apparently, some students also feel offended that we're asked to do work around the place. They feel that since we're paying for classes, we shouldn't have to work, too, etc. etc.

My response to that is, again, it depends on why those people are taking TKD. Are they taking it just to get exercise and become a black belt? Probably that person will just come to classes and skip the extra stuff. To get their money's worth? That person won't want to participate in work days. Or are they taking it to do all that AND become part of a community? That person can and will take advantage of working and having fun with fellow TKD students.

I didn't start TKD intending to become part of a community. I'm part of several communities already--the college community and my church family for example. But I have become part of the TKD community, and I've enjoyed it. I now have friends of all kinds and ages who love TKD. We've worked out together--now we work and have fun together, too.


TKD Rocker said...

I'm curious - How do the students interact with the head instructors on the extracurricular activities outside of the dojang? Are you expected to use the same courtesies as you would in class (bowing, "yes sir/ma'am", etc.)? Our school doesn't do much together outside of class (although I'm thinking of brnging up the idea), but if I (or any student) sees a head instructor outside of class, we're expected to bow (not excessively - just to show that we acknowledge them) and call them sir/ma'am. Just wondering how that kind of stuff is at your dojang.

Keri said...

Our club (The Iowa State University one) goes out for Pizza on Friday nights after practice. We also have parties, bbq's, movie nights etc. Probably because its almost alll college aged kids we go out and do things alot. The club I teach at also does some social activities-A few bbqs a year, but since its mostly kids/familys that comprise of that club we dont' go out as much.

taekwondomom said...

I'm glad to hear that other schools socialize, Keri. Your group is very talented, too, so I know it's not distracting you!

TKDRocker, that issue about how to socialize with your teachers is a good one to bring up. I face it from both sides (we sometimes have students from the college to our house . . .)

Master Hughes likes being addressed that way outside of class, too. We don't bow, but we don't call him "Greg." But he's such a friendly and generous and fun person, that it's not too hard to get beyond the teacher/student relationship.

I'd be curious to know what kinds of social events you try.

Also: we live in a middle-sized city, so it's easy for everyone to get whereever we decide to socialize. And people don't spend huge amounts of time commuting, so they're more willing to do extra fun stuff with us. Plus, we're fun people!