Wednesday, August 15, 2007

One step sparring drills

For our upcoming black belt camp, I am slated to lead a small group in a one-step sparring seminar. The session is entitled "Teaching and Understanding One-Steps." As I read that, I think more about helping students understand their one-steps on a conceptual level, and give them some thoughts on how to teach. In other words, it's not a time to learn new techniques or review old ones.

The biggest problem: many students cannot remember all of their one-steps. In order to perform #23, they first have to walk through 19, 20, 21, and 22. These bits of knowledge aren't mature enough to stand on their own.

Jump Spinning Crescent Kick
Originally uploaded by tommrkr

The first set of drills I intend to cover will be primarily for encouraging memory and retention of one-steps. After all, a class runs much smoother when everyone has done their homework and come prepared. Much easier to get to the meat of the lesson instead of spending 3/4ths of the time demonstrating what people can't remember.

The easiest thing to do: shake up the numbers. There are many easy ways to do this.
    Start with #30 and work your way down.
  • Work odd numbers and even numbers, up and down. Twist: one person does odd, one does even (no copying that way.)
  • Attacker calls the defense when they step back to attack.

Other possibilities:

  • Shadowboxing:working without a partner, student tries to crank 1 defense after another against an imaginary partner. Eventually, the student smoothly transitions from one to the other without needing to pause and think.
  • Line Drill: Students start at one end of the floor, and walk up doing a different defense everytime. Emphasis leans more towards eliminating pauses between techniques rather than form.
  • Circle Drill: Student is surrounded by students who count off. When instructor calls their number randomly, they attack the student in the middle who must use the "called" technique.
  • 2 attacker one-steps. Defender is in the middle, attacks first partner with hand technique. Turns to attack the 2nd with a kick technique of the same number. For extra pressure, 2nd attacker begins attack as soon as 1st defense ends (instead of waiting for the turn.)
  • 2 attacker one-steps. Building from the previous drill, now the defender turns 90 degrees and moves into the next set of hand/foot techniques. Pressure is now a little higher to be able to recall the next technique. Also makes for some interesting footwork.

I think that is a good start. I'll discuss the 2nd problem in another post.
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