Guardian Angel – Kill Phil

Here are a few shots of the physical side of the Guardian Angel Course – much of which involved the kids trying to kill Phil. There was also lots of pad work involving palm strikes, fingers, elbows and knees.

Related Articles

The Art of Mittology

This is a very interesting a useful video by Mr Carl Van Roon on the Art of Mittology – or mitt holding. It contains all the essentials of knowing how to hold hand mitts properly for sparring drills.

The full video is over 40 minutes long and covers not only pad holding, but also the important coaching tips, such as how to properly engage with your athletes so they feel as though they have a sparring partner rather than just a pad holder.

Relaxation : the key to power and performance

Spend any amount of time in a dojang  and you will see some guy (and it is more often than not a guy) whose moves look, well, clunky. They have a tense stiffness about them, a forced attempt to generate power. Trust me I know I was that guy (and still am on occasions).

Instructors faced with the clunky guy almost invariably say “try to relax”. Of course as soon as anyone tells you to relax you are likely to find yourself completely unable to do so, in fact, you are likely to actually stiffen up more. Akin to the experience of being told not to think of a pink elephant, the first thing that pops into your mind is a pink elephant.

Snippets of amazing old footage

DON’T FORGET TO WATCH No. 10 – Paul McPhail performs Juche forwards and backwards

For my 5th degree black belt grading in 1993 I thought it would be a cool idea to perform Juche Tul forwards then backwards for General Choi.

The plan failed miserably as I started the backwards part… I hadn’t even considered the possibility that General Choi would take offence to it. He turned his head and refused to watch. I figured… well… I may as well carry on now and struggled through to the end.

I passed the grading so I guess the General had forgiven me by the day the results were announced.

Here is the footage of the pattern at the grading.