Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Max Got in a Fight. And Won.

And I got the whole thing on video.

Close your mouth. It's not all that bad. He was wearing padding and a helmet. So was the other kid. And there were about six judges noting intricacies of moves I won't pretend to know anything about. Looked like a bunch of kicking. I'm told he did well, though I'm skeptical because if that fight had been in the street, little man would not have been as chipper as he was.
On Sunday, Max completed his first Taekwondo exam which lasted for what seemed like an eternity (read: it was really hot). Max is revved up. He had been unsure about continuing after we move, but the wave of positive reinforcement and recognition sealed the deal. He's an orange belt now. Again, I have no clue what the implications of that are and should probably study up a bit to get a few good-mom-points and support the offspring.

While we waited Max's turn, we got a preview.
To demonstrate kicks, they use old x-rays which make a nice snapping sound when hit.
Is that your pelvis he's about to kick?
Much of Taekwondo, I've learned, is waiting patiently.
It was popular to bring your 4-year old sister along. Uno was a hit. Every time.
Yes. He's the big brother at home, but often one of the littlest everywhere else.
The cool thing about this group is they have the same teacher, but these boys don't practice together.
They were entirely in-sync, unified for most of their sets.
Max's teacher, Jose Peralta, has been a God-send. At Max's practice yesterday, parents and students all sat in a circle while he debriefed Sunday's events. "Taekwondo is not about awards and recognition," he looked into each student's eyes, "Taekwondo is about discipline, respect, justice and being a good person in your community." The thing is, Jose says those things once in a while, but this guy truly lives and demonstrates them every day. He, like many Dominicans we know, is struggling to provide for his family but still manages to teach countless kids who otherwise wouldn't have the opportunity. I've got to find this guy some kind of grant for his school so he can keep doing good work.
Max (white belt, level 1) waiting to spar against another boy (green belt, level  4).
He told me later how scared he was, but he looked cool as a cucumber to me.
My sweet boy has come a long way since September. While the sparring video is too long to upload, I did manage this one. Little man is serious.

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