Many children, teenagers, women, and even some men think that since they train in Taekwondo, and may even be black belts, that they will be effective at defending themselves if they are attacked outside of class. For most of them, this is foolish thinking.
For most people, Taekwondo, and most other martial arts, are avocations—just hobbies or sports practiced for enjoyment or exercise. To make it so students may keep training regularly, and to guard against serious injury and possible lawsuits, everything done in training class is designed to protect the students as much as possible. Even in classes that use “full-contact” training, safety equipment is used and opponents are not using full-power; they do not have a desire to harm each other.
When I watch students sparring, be it in class or competition, I constantly see “black belts” stop fighting and dropping their guard at any excessive contact or the slightest injury or pain. Yet, these same black belts believe they will be able to defend themselves effectively in a self-defense situation. They may be better off than if they had no training at all, but not much better.
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