Presented by Stettler’s Dual Dragons TKD, the 10th annual Hammerfest is slated to run Jan. 25th at William E. Hay Composite High School.
Pre-registration runs Jan. 24th from 5 to 7 p.m. at 4924 – 50th St. although participants can register right up to when things kick off on Saturday, explained Dave Hargreaves, chief international instructor/owner of Dual Dragons TaeKwon-Do along with his wife Cindy Jensen.
Registration on Jan. 25th begins at 8 a.m. with events starting at 9:10 a.m. sharp.
“In 2010, we came back from our Worlds Tournament in England. We had been running smaller tournaments before (here) but we decided to step it up and do a provincial tournament through our governing body – United TaeKwon-Do,” he explained.
“The month was open to us in January, so we started doing tournament then,” he explained of those early days. “It’s been really successful – we always draw close to 200 competitors. And we also have raffles and such to help benefit KidSport. So that’s really popular, too. It’s like a 50-50 draw or a silent auction as well,” he said.
“We also run our tournament in a different format – we will have all the children compete in the morning followed by the adults competing in the afternoon.” he said. “What that does is to give them an opportunity to either watch the Black Belts or if they have other activities to attend, they can go – they don’t have to stay all day.”
“Other tournaments are formatted so that you are there basically from start to finish.”
For all belts, there will be stop point sparring, forms, and musical forms (Green Belt or higher) with the weapon optional.
For Black Belt (first to fourth Dan) there will be stop point sparring, continuous sparring, power break poker, power brick breaking, jump high kick and power side kick.
“So how the format goes is that we have Little Dragons which are the four- and five-year-olds who will be some of the first competitors,” said Hargreaves. “Black Belts will be sporadic through the day so everyone gets to see what being a Black Belt is all about and what they do,” he said.
“We also have what’s called the ‘Power Hour’ where you get to see all the Black Belts break bricks and boards, and there are some weapons forms if we have those competitors again,” he said. “It’s a lot of excitement.
“It’s also very family-oriented. I find that what we emphasize more is the family aspect of the entire sport,” he said. “And our format – the way we feature the children in the morning and the youth and adults in the afternoon – helps out that way.”
Meanwhiles, fees are $2 for spectators, $35 for two events, $45 for three or more events and $100 Family Max with two events.
“I’m basically the emcee of the whole thing, so I get to see everyone compete,” he said. “I love to see all the people coming from all over the province and out-of-province to come and compete at Hammerfest. Also, just seeing some of the kids who I know are quite shy and quite reserved – for them to get up and do a routine in front of hundreds of people – it speaks to how we are able to reinforce their confidence.
“It’s also one of the most rewarding things of all – to see those changes and the confidence in the children and also in the youth and adult classes,” he added. “We all have our reservations about doing something new, or trying something we maybe aren’t too particularly gifted at.
“That’s my whole goal – to help someone do something they didn’t think they could actually do. The confidence they gain from that is really unbelievable.”
For more information, call Cindy Jensen at 403-396-3413 or Dave Hargreaves at 403-588-6478.
Hargreaves studied both karate and Judo earlier in life, but nothing quite fit as well as TaeKwon-Do.
“There are many different types of TaeKwon-Do – ours is a ‘hard linear’ style of the martial arts.”
This means that it uses strong, quick techniques such as blocks, punches and kicks to disable an opponent.
Meanwhile, according to the web site, Dual Dragons TaeKwon-Do Schools offer programs for kids, teens and adults.
“TaeKwon-Do is the modernized way of an old Korean art of self-defense or un-armed combat. It was first developed 1,300 years ago in Korea. TaeKwon-Do is the name of a Korean free-fighting, self-defense art that employs the bare hands (and feet) to repel an enemy.
“TaeKwon-Do, as well as being a martial art, is also recognized as one of the most effective methods for improving health, physical fitness, flexibility, balance and poise.”
“All of our classes are jam-packed full. I think again that speaks to our family orientation, and how we run the classes.”