L.T.S.I. England, the U.K. network that is run for independent groups and clubs in the ITF Union, hosted its first seminar with Grandmaster Dalton on 7th November 2021.

Organiser and avid supporter and webmaster for the ITF Union Master Snow arranged for Grandmaster Dalton to attend the seminar back in May and then publicised it to the network of 78 groups and U.K. clubs he has been working with since 2004.

Those that know Chris know he is not a fan of governing bodies, so chooses to remain outside them for his own peace of mind and to protect them from issues that may arise due to his online I.T.F. magazine, ‘Original ITF magazine’. Chris says “We have no problem with the governing bodies, they are just not for us. In fact, we support them where we can, but our network is about just coming together a few times a year to stand side by side in the name of competition and unity. Those that want more help can affiliate to us and get exams, training courses and a lot more, but stay as they are now so absolutely no changes and no control”.

7th November was no exception, as many schools and clubs stood together to take part in our first U.K. seminar since Covid-19 started. We were honoured to have an 8th Degree, Master Slater, with us and seniors like Mr. Lapthorn, 6th Degree, who joined us on Zoom. We also had Mr. Smith, now 6th Degree, Mr. Tree, 4th Degree, Mr. Brennan, 4th Degree, Mr. Clarke, 4th Degree and Miss Parker, 4th Degree.

The event started at 10.30am sharp, as Grandmaster Dalton took the group through some very intense warm ups to ensure all were ready for the first two hour session of the four hour seminar.

A lot of humour put the group at ease, as the GM laughed and joked with the oldest member of 67 years young to our youngest members telling them “One day you could be doing my job” or “Keep stretching and you could have legs like Master Snow”….

In the morning, we had students on the seminar as young as 6 years of age just starting their TaeKwon-Do journey. The hall was bursting with so much talent that was eager to learn new skills, it really was an honour to be part of it. GM Dalton started on footwork to aid the many on the course in their sparring.

The next step in his seminar was working on setting the mind and ensuring focus and aggression were added into the mix. He stated when facing your opponent or performing patterns, you must use every bit of energy as not doing so would mean a sloppy performance. Mindset is key to winning and this can be the difference between winning and losing.

Kick drills were shown after the footwork had been set – from front leg kicking to stepping back and evading and counter shooting an attack, the hall was electric as Grandmaster Dalton took the students on a journey. Instructors spoke to Master Snow and stated like all seminars, you always pick up new things, but the most impressive thing at this seminar was Master Snow was not using it to get others to join L.T.S.I. England as affiliates and the Grandmaster did not care about badge or affiliation. This is why I think Chris and Grandmaster Dalton get on so well, as they are both about TaeKwon-Do first and foremost.

Before the group was dismissed, Master Snow presented the GM with an official L.T.S.I. England supporters’ plaque for conducting the seminar. All attendees were given the chance to get their licenses signed and, of course, a picture with Grandmaster Dalton and then that all-inclusive group shot.

As the clock struck 12.30pm, many of the colour belts left, leaving about 25 Black Belts on the floor and about 30 on Zoom. The GM then talked about sine wave which, for some on the course, was new to them – never the less, they gave it a go to get a better understanding of it.

The beauty about the L.T.S.I. network is they have many that are fully I.T.F. driven and many who are not, hence why the group works well.

In the pattern sections on both seminars, Grandmaster Dalton talked about the importance of why everything must start in a reverse motion and the different types of sine wave in I.T.F. TaeKwonDo. The importance of speed in patterns is to get the mass working.

On to putting the sparring drills into practice, the group partnered up and tested the drills taught then it was time for the senior exams.

Stuart Smith took his 6th Degree, Emilia May took her 4th Degree, one of Mr. Smith’s students Jack Clark took his 3rd Degree and one of Master Snow’s students Ethan Webb took his 2nd Degree.

Chris was the photographer on the day but jumped in on the course where he could, despite his injured ankle. As the seminar drew to a close, Grandmaster Dalton gave special credit to Chris saying “We have key players in the ITF Union. This guy works hard for us, I thank him for all he does for me and ITF Union”.

In the evening, a group of seniors took Grandmaster Dalton for a meal and, as you can probably guess, the topic of conversation for the night was TaeKwon-Do! This was great evening, as everyone laughed and talked about how the changes in TaeKwon-Do have happened over the last 30 years.

The evening ended as GM Dalton headed back to his hotel. In the morning, he would head to the airport to go to his next destination, Budapest. His next trip planned for the week after was the ITF Union World Championships. All in all, a great day was had by all. We look forward to his next visit in 2022.

Article by Miss Tracey Leonard

4/5 - (1 vote)