Sandor is eight and gets to play tackle football this year. He is excited to the extreme. This is the first time in five years he’s taken a break from Martial Arts training. He loves football, or the idea of it, but he realy doesn’t know what he’s doing.
Yesterday was his first practice in full pads. Sandor looked as though somebody plugged him into a car battery; he was so jacked up. The first thing the tiny players did was the side step run. I watched as my boy fell down, stumbled and came in almost last. I couldn’t help myself. I yelled for him to come to me.
“Sandor, this is just rotary jogging, like we do in class.”
“Oh, I didn’t know that. Ok” He ran back to line up. We rotary jog in taekwondo so we learn to use angles when sparing. Sandor turned into the fastest kid on the field.
Next the coach (who is wonderful) lined the little boys up facing each other, to work on blocking drills. Coach blew the whistle and boys crashed into each other like tiny samurai. “Take em down” the coach yelled and Sandor instantly leg swept his opponent, slung him over his hip and took the top mount. The kid on the bottom was confused and obviously frustrated. I watched Sandor take down all his opponents with the same smooth jujitsu moves. Kids were yelling at him, “why are you sitting on me?”
When the coach saw what was going on he came to me. “Does he watch a bunch of cage fighting or wrestling?”
I shook my head. “He’s been training in Martial Arts since he was three. It’s just muscle memory. Tell him there’s no grappling or leg sweeps in foot ball.”
“Wow, I’ve never seen that on a football field.” He laughed.
“You’re just lucky he didn’t arm-bar your running back.”
Now Sandor understands blocking, and what is and isn’t involved. But
I want to say “good job” to all you Martial Arts Instructors. Your students do, in fact, remember, exactly what you teach them.
(This is a reprint from a couple of years ago. Today was Sandor’s last football gave of the season. Way to go Cobras.”