Tournaments in Shaolin-Do
We don't emphasize competition at our school. Primarily everyone is focused on self-improvement, self-discipline, mastery, health and community. However, we DO celebrate what we've learned and achieved, and push ourselves to compete at least once a year at our big annual tournament every February. We also have smaller in-house tournaments throughout the year and encourage everyone to travel to the Lexington school for their annual tournament as well.
A Week of Events
The Austin tournament is usually the 3rd or 4th weekend in February. It is flanked by rank advancement testing into brown and black belt and sash levels with Grandmaster Sin and amazing seminars taught out by our grandmaster the day after the tournament. It's a week of festivities and the feeling of camaraderie, inspiration and excitement is amazing.
Tournament Day begins with the Tiger and Dragon competitions for kids 4 through 12. Then the teens and adults compete. Students compete in sparring and/or open hand and weapons forms in kung fu or tai chi. The kids get trophies and the adults get medals. Even the youngest children who have only been with us a few weeks can compete by sparring or by demonstrating their kicks, stances and punches or sparring technqiues. Older or more experienced kids demonstrate their long forms and spar.
We break for dinner and come back in to the gym for our BIG DEMONSTRATION.
The demo highlights multiple students, groups, families, instructors and Masters demonstrating open hand and weapon kung fu and tai chi forms. The final teen and adult sparring rounds for 1st and 2nd place occur during the demo. Everything is set to music for added excitement and entertainment. You get to see some higher level forms that you wouldn't normally get to see until you were a 3rd or 4th degree black belt. Students, friends and family members fill the stands and love the momentum!
It's best explained in the most important award that is given on tournament day - the Participation Award.
It takes courage to step into the ring (whether it's to spar or demonstrate a form) and that action seeps into every aspect of your life. It trains you to take the leap, do the gutsy thing and go after your dreams and goals.
So we encourage everyone to compete as often as we have tournaments, for that reason. You can be sure that every master at our school has competed many times. We know the value of testing ourselves and constant growth. The sooner you begin competing, the greater the benefits for you.
New to the School? You Can Still Be Involved!
And if you've just joined the school. Don't stay home for this week of events! Come watch the testing on Thursday and Friday evenings before the tournament. Come help with the tournament! We always need runners, time keepers, score keepers, help with loading and unloading and running the tables! And even beginners can take one or both of Grandmaster Sin's seminars and get to know him a little better in the process.