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  • Writer's pictureAgnes & Adam Gardner

Self Defence & Knife Defence Seminar

On Saturday the 20th July at the Watlington Taekwon-Do, we were privileged enough to host a two-hour self defence seminar lead by Mr Spreadbury, from the Reading and Basingstoke club. It was a two-hour packed session for all belts of all ages and inspired those sitting down to contemplate partaking! The versatile range of activities meant that every ability fitness was covered – from physical fitness to mental stamina to thought provoking ideas.

The expertise of Mr Spreadbury with his many years of teaching Taekwon-Do to his time spent in the military meant a fascinating and exhilarating full range of activities; learning about the history of certain knifes (a brief history of world war knifes), how to disarm and protect yourself from potentially dangerous people with weapons if running is not an option! With Mr Spreadbury showing the dangers of knifes – from the humble kitchen knife, to a first World War knife, to a massive machete – it was exciting to see the range, but obviously safety prevailed and I would like to state that we had zero injuries! But the range of weaponry on display was scary enough and to think that knife crime is on the rise is scary and highlights the importance of protecting oneself through a save and controlled environment. Education is the key.

The activities bought together people from all ages and all abilities and it was pleasing to see that even those with black belts learnt at the same time and pace the white belts and other coloured belts did. Formality was always present, but a relaxed atmosphere meant that everyone was able to work with a range of differing abilities along with forming friendships from other clubs whilst learning was occurring. With demonstrations from Mr Spreadbury using a range of different students to assist him meant that anyone of any ability could be used, at this stage we would like to thank those belts for their assistance – mainly being used as human guinea pigs! (Sorry animal lovers).

As today, was mainly focussing on self defence, both myself and my partner learnt the skills in protecting ourselves and hopefully we will not have to use it! Learning the different holds and then practicing these moves with the careful and watchful eye of the calm Mr and Mrs Spreadbury has given us thought provoking ideas.

We would like to thank Mr Spreadbury for giving up his Saturday and leading this exceptional seminar in self defence. Thank you to all those who participated – it would not have been the same without any of you, and working with the range of mature and enthusiasts meant that time went by quickly.

Parent report

Wow! What a fantastic experience for the students of Taekwon-Do had with this session. Safety was obviously paramount but the range of different activities meant that my child was never bored. Considering we had to get up early and drive for an hour meant that we had a rather grumpy child, but after the session, he was discussing what he had learnt for the next couple of hours.

It was also great to watch the range of abilities and ages all get together and work as one – belts and age meant nothing. It was all about participation and helping each other, cementing and bonding relationships.

Both Miss Wrobel and Mr Gardner are fantastic instructors and their dedication to give their students and other students the opportunity at participating a range of activities is fantastic. Their dedication, to the Arts cannot go undetected, both lovely and caring people who give the best opportunity, in a time where time is precious and we live in a world of ‘me me me’, they clearly understand the core values of working as a team with other clubs.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank both of them for giving my son the opportunity of working with them and with the inspiring Mr Spreadbury. I hope he never has to use what he has learnt today, but at least I know he can now defend himself – if running is not an option.

Thank you again, for this fantastic opportunity and we will definitely be coming to more events like this in the future.


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