Tournaments are about much more than “winning” and “losing”. While every kid loves to go home with a trophy, there are far more important (and longer term) lessons to be learned from tournament participation. Check out FIVE great reasons to participate in tournaments:
1. Develop Confidence. Ask anyone who’s competed in a Class A or Class B (big) tournament or participated in a major rank testing (such as for Black Belt). You step out onto the floor and your adrenaline starts flowing. You are performing in front of a crowd. Tournament participation offers students a chance to develop their confidence and focus while performing in front of a group.
2. Improve Your Skills. Tournaments offer a POSITIVE environment in which to showcase your skills. Judges and fellow competitors will give you ideas about what you did well and what you can work on. Because students often compete with the same skills they test with, tournaments offer a wonderful way to prepare for rank testing.
3. Get Motivated. Students who commit to participating in a tournament often start training a little harder. Whether they are participating in forms, sparring, or weapons, everyone wants to step onto the floor and perform well. Regardless of where a student places, there is a tremendous sense of accomplishment in the skills they’ve performed and the improvements they’ve made.
4. Learn from Others. Tournaments offer a unique opportunity to watch fellow classmates perform. While we’re cheering them on, we can also learn from their skills. Larger tournaments are attended by State and World Champions, offering an even greater opportunity for learning and improvement.
5. Have Fun with Fellow Students. In a martial arts tournament, sportsmanship is of utmost importance. We encourage students to meet new friends, cheer for each other, and support each other regardless of scores and results. Students should bring respect and a positive attitude to every tournament they attend.
Ultimately a tournament is not about what you win or what you loose, but about what you learn. Tournaments are designed to be a positive introduction to tournament participation, and are open to all ages and ranks.