JUNE 26TH 2016, BAAR – It was a normal Sunday morning and most people in Baar Switzerland were still sleeping. For the students of Jung Do Kung Fu and Dae Ryeon Do Samurai who gathered at this early hour of June 26th in the YunSong Academy, it was a very special day. Although they have taken the same way dozens, if not hundreds of times from the dressing room to the mats, everything was different today. The bowing before the dojang is deeper than usual, accompanied by more reverence. Nervosity lies in the air. Then, finally, the waiting is over. The instructors enter the room. Silence. Then it begins: the belt test.
The test had been practiced many times and some students have been in this situation before. Nevertheless, the tension remains high. The strenuous and demanding techniques are shown over and over again, until at last of the evaluating instructors is more or less satisfied. The commands of the technical director, Stephan Krellmann, echo through the room and the only remaining sounds are the sliding of the feet on the mats, the hammering of fists into the punching bags, the swishing of the swords through the air and of course the kihaps, the battle cries, of the students. Gradually, the nervousness decreases and all that matters is to give your best and to show what you can, even if you really have no strength left. That’s what it’s about. Not primarily fighting against others, although that is the main goal of the sport, but fighting against yourself. The fight is not easy.
After a total of 7 hours of testing, almost 40 students could replace their old belts with new ones. Unfortunately there were some students that lost their fight and did not reach the next level. In Tang Soo Do Moo Duk Kwan schools the requirements are particularly high and therefore it can happen that a student does not make the next belt. But it is like a war, some battles are lost, some are won. It is the final result that matters. And if you did not win, it is important to train even harder, concentrate more, and be more disciplined and the battle will be won the next time. With this encouragement the visibly relieved and sweaty faces left the dojang after a day of hard work. The motivation to go on and the anticipation of learning new techniques and the deepening of the old for the next test are huge.