The Insight of a young Wu-Shu Athlete (By Siu Yuat Wong- abridged and edited)

After coming back from the competition it is imperative that I analyze the areas where I underachieved and the reasons, so that in due course I have clear and precise goals to which I can work towards for the next competition.

Looking at other teams from around the world allows us to better understand where we are compared with the rest of the world. In hindsight I believe that we are most lacking in the area of basic and fundamental wushu skills. We have too many “cou fen dian” or places where points can be deducted for simple errors which should not occur. In essence our basic stance work, flexibility, kicks, jumps, and sweeps etc. are just simply not good enough. In order to correct these I will need to pay more attention to these areas while training, as well as simply increasing the number of repetitions in my training. We will also need to increase our conditioning and strengthening exercises to build up the necessary muscles needed to execute the techniques with precision and accuracy.

Another major flaw that I identified was a noticeable lack of speed and flavor in my forms. In order to correct this I will be working on increased repetitions on “combinations” of the form instead of less “parts” of the form.

Last but not least is the fact that I felt extremely nervous upon doing my form while competing. I put this down to 1) a lack of competition and performance experience, 2) a lack of mental and physical preparation before walking onto the arena. Walking onto an arena without both mental and physical preparation is the equivalent of having wasted a full years training in preparation of the competition as you will not be able to give your 100% best when the time comes. When you are nervous it does not allow you to relax and open out the techniques As a result the techniques are shortened, stiff, and ugly. It also means that you will become fatigued quicker.

Self analysis is an important training process that can enable us to reach higher levels of competency. I have recently devised a training programme that will hopefully enable me to address my weaknesses and improve my performance in the next competition.

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