Cross Hands, This is How I’m Going to Build Your Child’s Confidence and Focus

Since early September last year, we have helped children to build their confidence, improve their focus and learn effective self-defence. Therefore, you are about to learn exactly how we did it in the town of Carmarthen and how we will do it again through our Cross Hands Martial Arts Classes. We are ready to meet you…

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Taekwondo Builds Confidence

Learning Self-Defence

First of all, on the school ground, quite a bit of ruff and tumble can take place. Your child may or may not find this fun. However, your child may enjoy all levels of play if he or she knew effective self-defence.

Furthermore, self-defence is also important for confidence and safety whilst on the streets.

Building Friendships

Although Taekwondo is an individual sport, West Coast Taekwondo heavily prides itself in getting children to seamlessly interact with each other through our fun partner based activities in a non-judgmental environment.

Belt Gradings

Most forms of external rewards in sport comes from winning competitions. So, although competition is not always a bad thing, we commonly find that many children who are not athletically gifted get very disheartened.

Our Carmarthen and Cross Hands Martial Arts Classes host regular belt gradings. Every three months to be exact. The belt gradings will allow your children to be assessed on individual improvement and technical competency.

Internal Rewards

Confidence is best built through personal achievements. Your child will improve his or her Taekwondo technique each and every week. The internal sense of reward is remarkable!

cross hands martial arts classes

Taekwondo Improves Focus

The Show of Respect

When you bring your child to West Coast Taekwondo, the first thing he or she will learn is the bow. The bow is much like a hand shake or a high five. It’s a show of respect.


I would encourage you, the parents to bring your child to Taekwondo at least once each week. This teaches your child routine. Routines always have a purpose. Routines always work towards a goal. Your child will achieve greatly by implementing routines.

Courtesy Among Students

Our coaches require your child to work well with others. This is enforced through team building activities and effective communication between partners.

Long Term Gratification

We will put your child through a belt grading every three months. This teaches your child long term gratification. Your child will know what it means to work towards a future target.

Visit Our Cross Hands Martial Arts Classes

We currently run a “Junior Kicker” class every Thursday at 4.45PM in Tumble hall. We would love to see you there!

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Self Defence Against a Minor

So, Self Defence Against a Minor is a strange headline. Whilst doing my research, I found that this topic was within the 10 most searched areas in self defence. Why?

It may be down to the recent shootings in Florida or maybe people like to feed their curiosity.

However, what if the aggressive minor has a blade?

The Unclear Law

One of my biggest frustrations as a self-defence instructor is that the law is scatty when it comes to self-defence. I’ll give you an example.

Many moons ago, a friend of mine had punched a man unconscious out of self-defence. He was not arrested until the police discovered that he was a Taekwondo black belt and an instructor in the art. They concluded that because of his advanced skills, he should have managed to restrain the aggressor with less force.

When it comes to self defence against a minor, there are no specific age restrictions on who we can strike when we feel endangered. However, we must use reasonable force.

This reasonable force stuff is frustrating because there’s no specific guide book on the topic.

Admittedly, it’s obvious that if a 7 year old tries to hurt you, you take his toy off him and put him on the naughty step. As the children venture into puppetry, more damage can be caused by their attack.

If a blade comes into play, anyone can suddenly cause damage. If there’s more than one child attacker, we could seriously get hurt.

Do we deserve to get hurt just because we’ve followed this unclear “reasonable force” principle?

Finding Your Way

So our options are open when it comes to self defence against a minor. We just need to use “reasonable force” which is annoyingly out of our judgment.

Step one would be to learn self-defence. Go to class at least once per week and ensure that the instructor is teaching effective striking skills.

Secondly, if there’s an option to move away from the situation, bite your pride and do it. It’s not worth the legal hassle or the potential harm.

Next, know that you can only make a snap judgment and react to the situation as it comes. You may need to hurt the minor. Do not put yourself in harms way.

Ideas for Reasonable Force

I can’t promise you that the following would be seen as appropriate for self defence against a minor but they are alternatives for striking to the head.

  1. Kicking or punching the thighs and arms to incapacitate the minor.
  2. A single strike to the body to take the minors breath.
  3. A simple but effective choke hold to make the minor pass out without serious harm.
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5 Legal Self Defence Weapons for Women

This post is controversial. The truth is, there’s no such thing as a legal self defence weapon.

Obviously, we’re not allowed to carry guns, knives and batons. I’m quite thankful for this.

Secondly, if the court has reason to believe that you’re carrying an item for self-defence purposes, you will be prosecuted for the intent. This is something I don’t quite agree with.

This post discusses everyday items that women carry in their hand bags that may be used during an emergency. Although there are no legal self defence weapons, there are legal items that one can carry.

Hair Brush

The first item is a hair brush. Opt for a wooden handled brush over plastic as this is more resilient for striking.

Furthermore, the bristles on a hair brush may be used for targeting the eyes.


if you use roll-on, skip to the next item. Deodorant spray may be used to distract the aggressor. Spray it in his face to temporarily distrust his breathing, blind him and slow him down.

Be warned, this distraction is brief so be ready to strike or run soon after.


Let’s get the vicious one out of the way next. Keys are essentially blades weapons so if you opt to use yours, you better be in a place of real danger.

Keys will penetrate the skin if you lash out on soft spots such as the neck and face but it will only slow the aggressor down. It will also tick him off so make sure you have an escape plan.

Personal Security Alarms

The personal security alarm is a popular legal self defence weapon. Although it is designed to gather attention, it can also be very painful to the aggressor when you hold it firmly against his ear.

A personal security alarm often comes as a key chain. You my pull the alarm, Press the device against the aggressors ear and adjust your key into position.

Pens and Pencils

Most women I’ve meet carry a diary or notebook. Therefore, they also carry something to write with.

Note that pens and pencils have the ability to penetrate. Although not as sharp, they can go deeper than keys so these office supplies can be far more lethal.


Using these items for self defence can cause gruesome injuries or in some instances, death. If you opt to use these items, the writer of this blog post can not be held responsible as it is within your discretion to do so.

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Staying Lean Without Counting Calories

Staying lean without counting calories is not only a possibility but it’s a must. Through dropping calorie counting, you will eat more nutrient dense foods and start enjoying your meals.

Your Mother Was Right

Staying lean without counting calories starts with vegetables which are bursting with nutrients. If you don’t like eating your vegetables, get over it. They are the key ingredients of health and longevity and without them, the quality of your life will be poor.

Furthermore, the fibrous nature of vegetables means that they require great calorie burn to digest. Essentially, you burn the calories as you eat them. This is particularly try for dark green vegetables such as broccoli, kale, spinach and watercress.

If you struggle to eat vegetables, cook them up. Try boiling, stir fry and grilling. This will make the vegetables far less upsetting on the stomach.

Intermittent Fasting

The initial step to breaking into Ketosis is fasting. Ketosis is the process of converting fat into usable energy and a person may become “fat adapted” as oppose to relaying on sugar.

Restrictions are powerful but also daunting for many. Therefore, we want to keep our eating window as wide open as possible whilst getting the same results as we would at a narrower eating window.

Fasting for 16 hours and eating witching an 8 hour eating window is commonly practice but research suggests that we can get the same results from a 14 hour fast and a 10 hour eating window.

Carb Restriction

Once you’ve applied a high vegetable intake and fasting, you may want to consider carb restriction.

You do not need to avoid starch all together. In fact, for most of us, gluten improves our tolerance and immunity. Consider it a vaccination against fibrous foods.

We can stay in a state of Ketosis at 200 grams of Carbohydrates and bellow. After going heavy on the vegetables, this may equate to 2 portions of cereal or a large bowl of pasta.

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Abdominal Training for Taekwondo

A little while back, I posted a video called Abdominal Training for Taekwondo. This post is martial arts specific. However, I believe that it may be helpful to athletes from a variety of different disciplines.

Why is this important?

Training your abs will help you with striking power, velocity, shock absorption, protecting the back and shock management. All of which is crucial in Taekwondo.

What does the video cover?

The video covers conditioning of the lower abs, creating inertia, anti-stability exercises, reacting to shock and the appropriate set and repetitions ranges for conditioning the abs.

The Lower Abdominals

The lower abdominal muscles are the weakest part of the abdominal wall. For this reason, they need great attention. If you do not condition these muscles adequately, poor pelvic and spinal alignment will happen. Practicing the lowering portion of the leg raise is an ideal exercise. It works the lower abs without pressuring the thigh and hip flexor muscles.

Creating Inertia

To much rotation of the lumbar spine is very dangerous. The lumbar spine is designed for stability, not extreme rotational movements. It is essential that we practice anti-rotation where we attempt to resist twisting from the trunk. You may practice the standing barbell twist for this purpose.

Shock Absorbtion

Abdominal training for Taekwondo will not be complete without shock absorption. Due to regular sparing practice, it is not necessary for you to constantly take a medicine ball to the gut! That being said, it is important that you practice the “dish” exercise to build a thicker layer of tissue around the mid-section.

Protecting the Back

The lumbar spine is the only skeleton we have between our pelvis and torso. Therefore, the abs play an important part in keeping the body upright. This function can be challenged with plank variation on unstable kit. This kit includes BOSU Balance Trainers, Swiss Balls and Medicine Balls.

Shock Management

When you run at a high speed, five times your body weight in ground reaction force may travel up your legs per stride. There is also a substantial amount of force that comes from landing a kick. We must practice shock management. The for mentioned plank exercise on a Swiss Ball may be advanced by allowing a partner to strike the ball as you practice the exercise. Their job is to knock you unstable.

Sets and Repetitions

Abdominal training for Taekwondo and for any other sports should be done with high repetitions as this will challenge your mid-sections for the job it is meant to do. That job is prolonged stability.

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