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Wanting more out of your Martial Arts - have you ever thought of helping others with their training?

Hopefully I have met a lot of you by now, having been around the Prestwich & Oldham Centres for the past few months, but for those of you I have not had the pleasure of meeting yet, my name is Mr Nick Ogden, and I’m one of the Instructors working between the two centres.

I have been training along with my family in Tang Soo Do since the middle of 2018. I fell in love with the art almost immediately. The skills I was learning, along with the fitness and mental discipline, were exactly what I needed after 20 years of channel surfing on my sofa.

I loved going to the Bury Centre where we trained and soon made a great group of friends (some of who still train and some that have now moved on). As I got more comfortable with what we were being taught and as I started to understand the terminology and training techniques more, I found I was able to help out others in class that were either new to the art or who were struggling with what we were learning. I found that I really enjoyed that aspect of training as much as my own training and I got a real buzz out of being able to help my fellow students take that next small step on their journey.

We are all constantly taking small steps on our own Martial Arts journey every time we walk into the Do Jang, whether you’re a White, Green or Black Belt, but have you ever stood in class and thought you might be able to help out others who may be struggling on their own journeys.

For me, that realisation happened very quickly into my own journey and I soon found I wanted to push myself further on the teaching front. I wanted to give something back to others in the same way my own Instructors had given me their time knowledge and advice. After discussing it with Master Parkinson I decided to enrol on to the FMAC Assistant Instructor Training programme when I was just an Orange Belt.

As part of the Family Martial Arts organisation, we offer training programmes for almost all ages and abilities to enable you to develop your 'teaching skills' and give something back to fellow students and to your training centre. Our Junior Instructor Training (JIT), Assistant Instructor Training (AIT) and Certified Instructor Training (CIT) are programmes designed to train the next generation of Instructors and Assistant Instructors and you are developed to help you pass on your own knowledge and skills in the art of Tang Soo Do to other members.

The courses usually comprise of a 2-3 hour training session once a month with Master Parkinson and you do both mental and physical training in that time - looking at the mental aspects and processes that go into helping our fellow students and then getting the chance to put that in to practice. As well as the training sessions, we also like to get our Instructor Training students to help out in classes by either taking a warm up or helping those that need some additional support. At the Prestwich & Oldham Centres, we make a commitment to giving you time on the mats to try out and to perfect your skills.

I found that going on the AIT programme not only helped me to improve and develop my confidence, communication and teaching skills, but it also helped me to understand why we do what we do in Martial Arts. In turn, my own training improved greatly as I started to look deeper into the mental and physical importance of what we do in Tang Soo Do.

Fast forward 3 years and I now get to stand up in front of you and help you all on your own Martial Arts Journeys and feel privileged to pass on what I have learnt over the past four years to you all. There is always a real satisfaction when we come off the mats and students tell me that they enjoyed the class or that they learnt something new they hadn’t done before. It makes me realise that we are all in this together and if we can help each other out, then we all benefit greatly.

You may have seen Miss Mia or the Khan family at the Prestwich Centre or Mrs Kelly at the Oldham Centre helping out around classes, taking the warm ups or helping others who have been struggling with certain aspects of their training? I’m sure I can speak for all of us when I say that like myself they don’t regret joining the Instructor Training programmes, learning these new skills and helping out those that are both starting out and continuing on their journey.

If you are looking at wanting to learn some new skills, or are the type of person that wants to give something back to the Tang Doo community, and you are interested in trying out one of our Instructor Training Programmes, then please speak to one of the Instructors in the centres, hit the website or pick up one of the leaflets from the reception desk which has more information.

See you on the mats.

Kyo Sa Nim Mr Ogden

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