Well, we are almost finished with 2020. Like most people, it has been a complete whirlwind of an experience that will have ripple effects and 2nd order consequences for years to come.
It would be easy to write about the “Worst of 2020,” but that’s not how I am going to choose to look back at this year. I feel so much sympathy for families that lost loved ones, jobs, or marriages. This year has come to a stand still but also accelerated life by 5 years. Who would have thought…
Virtual teaching would be a new normal.
Or how often you have to walk back to your car because you forgot your mask.
What about the appreciation we now have for person-to-person contact and conversation?
Choosing to find the best perspective I can throughout this time hasn’t been easy, and I’m sure you’ve felt the heaviness as well. That’s why I wanted to put together a fun list of the BEST OF 2020. Take a look at some of my instructors and my favorite additions to our organization this year!
To have a library of training videos, classes, entertainment and education for students to access anywhere at anytime is an exciting upgrade! Plus adding in the option to take part in virtual classes when you can’t be in the school has assisted many of our families through the challenges this year.
New Student Website – worldclassstudent.com
An all new redesigned student website for upcoming events, setting up private lessons, registering for special events and classes, access to the student portal and digital dojang, and more. The world is accelerating in the use of technology and we are committed to being the most state-of-the-art school in the country.
When protocols were mandated for social distancing and zero physical contact, that was a bit of a blow to some of our curriculum and teaching methods. We are excited to re-introduce our self-defense and sparring curriculum back into our classrooms when it is appropriate, but until then we’ve loved developing and teaching our combination curriculum. It’s great to see students understanding the footwork, sparring techniques and self-defense techniques from learning the combinations.
Black Belt Semesters
Updating our Black Belt curriculum to semester-style has been awesome! I love the development of students’ abilities and how the class feels even more like a team. The first semester testing performances will be at the end of January, and I know testing will be an awesome experience!
Impact Wraps on Wavemasters
Another tech enhancement was investing in sensors for our standing kicking bags, aka Wavemasters, which monitors the frequency and force of the impact and generates a score for our students on the TVs in the classroom. It puts our students inside a video game! This has been a great replacement especially for students who miss the contact sparring portion of class! Our adults love how motivating putting up good scores are and the physical endurance it develops.
While we weren’t able to host all of our regular special events, we had to think outside the box for new ideas. Using the Impact Wraps, we created an event where our Black Belts competed against each other to put up the highest score through multiple rounds of kicking and drills. We even had a round in the dark with black lights! We have our next Fight Night for adults in February!
As much as we take pride in our hosted events, the virtual aspect of Zoom has opened up more avenues to reach more people! We were able to host a virtual Bully-proof seminar, virtual Women’s self-defense seminar, an alumni class, a virtual “Ask Master Scarsella” question segment, and more!
In May, we organized an event that was a true bright spot in a dark period. Our Coast-To-Coast class brought together 4 World Class schools and Masters to do a class for all of our students. With more than 600 participants, it ended up being one of the biggest martial art classes to ever be taught. It was an honor to be part of that class and in front of so many World Class students! We are super excited to do it again on January 2nd with even more World Class Schools! Make sure to register for the class below!
Favorite Video – ContactLESS Sparring
Runner up Video: Bruce Buffer Introduces MSWCTKD
Staff Development and Responsibility
Throughout this year I’ve had to rely on my team heavier than ever. The responsibilities of making and creating videos, teaching virtual classes, designing and editing videos, updating websites and communications, and what seemed like a never ending to-do list was handled with my team. My team stepped up when they needed to. They stepped up because they wanted to. They grew and developed to the level that allowed us to stay strong through the storm of Covid. I am so thankful for my instructors and team. It’s something I don’t ever want to experience again, but am glad we went through it together. Your dedication, loyalty and sincerity in bringing Tae Kwon Do and its benefits to our Tae Kwon Do students and families at a time they needed it most is, and will continue to be, a driving force in me pushing our organization forward. I’m proud to be your leader!
I’d love to hear your favorite upgrades in our school or the things you’re thankful for that happened this year in your life! Remember it’s a choice when it comes to perspective – but be careful, because if you don’t choose, then a negative attitude is the default.
Sincerely & looking forward to a great 2021!