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Master Wheatley Conducts Specialty Seminar in Premiere Trip to Germany
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Master Robert N. Wheatley from Reno, Nevada USA travelled to Germany on invitation to conduct a Master Specialty Seminar on Saturday, 23 June 2007.
An VIII Degree International Instructor & Tester, he is the President of the U.S. ITF.  Additionally, he is Chairman of the Promotions & Discipline Committees of the ITF led by Grand Master Choi Jung Hwa.  In 2006 he received the ITF Award for outstanding contributions in the areas of instructions and service. Grand Master Choi authorized Master Wheatley in May 2007 to singly conduct the International Taekwon-Do Instructor Course worldwide.  Master Wheatley is highly sought after worldwide for his superbly crafted, dynamic, informative and inspirational seminars.  Simply stated, he is a „standards bearer“ for the ITF led by Grand Master Choi and a leading Taekwon-Do Master in the world.
He was met at the Frankfurt International Airport two days before the seminar by the host and leader of Taekwon-Do Central, Robert Borja, V Degree.  The car drive to the beautiful town of Eschwege in central Germany was filled with information exchange about the ITF, profile of the projected participants, and seminar outline. Lunch followed check-in at the Schloss (Palace) Hotel over looking the large castle by a river in the heart of town.  After some rest down time, Master Wheatley was brought to Borja’s residence for traditional German dinner.  Master Wheatley then had the opportunity to review press coverage document binders on fourteen years of Taekwon-Do Central’s achievements and successful events.  He also examined the electronic reactions device conceived by Borja to enhance free sparring performance.
On Friday, Master Wheatley took an early morning walk around the colorful town of stylist half-timber buildings and cobblestone streets to find the citizens most friendly.  After breakfast, he was driven to an impressive collector’s dream antique car museum in Eisenach, a city in the former East Germany.  Next stop, just minutes away by car, was the German Barock composer, organist and cembalist Johann Sebastian Bach’s house, garden and adjacent exposition center.  The third and highlight site was the majestic Wartburg Castle.  This castle is listed by UNESCO as a world heritage.  It was in this castle that Martin Luther’s translations of the Bible helped to develop a standard version of the German language. The guided tour was conducted in English.
On seminar day Borja met with Master Wheatley at the hotel restaurant for breakfast.  Tactically timed, in the day’s newspaper was an article with photo announcing the much anticipated seminar.  Meanwhile, Taekwon-Do Central students exhibited fine teamwork in  preparing in record time the city’s biggest sports hall for the seminar. A 3rd degree student then led the participant in warm-up and stretching.
There were nearly sixty participants ranging in age from 7 to 55 years old, from 9th Gup to 5th Degree.  Two 4th degree black belts and one 2nd degee black belt came from Ireland.  Two 5th degree black belts travelled from Pakistan.  Two 5th degree black belts and ten other black belts from Germany participated.
Upon Master Wheatley’s arrival and after a short introduction by Borja, the seminar started promptly at 10.00 am. Various group formations and the fast tempo in which to get into those formations were explained and rehearsed. Jumping kicks were made while running in a big circle formation.  An assessment of techniques in selected Tuls finalized the seminar outline and thus made training for the day more specific to the needs of the participants. After an hour and-a-half of intense activity, group photos were made before a short break.  During the break, participants  discovered the many delicious German pastries, such the Black Forest cake, donated by parents of Taekwon-Do Central students as simply irresistable.
Resuming instructions, Master Wheatley emphasized that maximum power generation should be behind all techniques. Blocks, and not just attack movements, should be performed as powerfully as possible to maximize the probability of disabling an attacking opponent after just one bodily contact.  Methods of power generation, given various situations of feet movement restrictions, were explained.  The finer points of dodging were explained and demonstrated.  The optimal dodging method was defined as quickly moving away from the opponent’s line-of-attack, while maintaining eye contact upon the opponent, and simultaneously counter-attacking.  Throughout the session, questions were encouraged.  As an answer to one question: Eye placement on the chin of the opponent provides a fighter with an appropriately wide field of vision while negating any intimidating and distracting effect of the opponent’s glance.  Numerous tips for testers, trainers and students on breaking were given.  Emphasis was on correct alignment between the striking tool and the target and then bringing maximum body weight and acceleration behind the striking tool. Master Wheatley did the first break with an impressive horizontal open back-hand strike.  It was indeed spectacular not only because of a rarely used striking tool, but in that he made it seem so easy.  Attesting to quality instruction, several voulunteer participants all broke boards in their first attempt.
Black belt Tuls and exciting Two-Step Sparring techniques rounded off the training day by 5:00 p.m..  Master Wheatley was delighted with the disciplined and well-conditioned children who also lasted with energy and concentration throughout the seven hour seminar.  In gratitude Borja presented Master Wheatley a handsome pewter German beer mug.  To commemorate the ocassion, the mug lid was engraved with, “Master Robert Wheatley, Germany, 2007”.  All received a uniquely colorful participation certificate featuring Master Wheatley breaking a concrete slab with a jumping overhead kick.  While the participation certificates were being distributed, Master Wheatley graciously signed souvenirs and posed for photographs with thankful participants.
To conclude that special day and in honor of Master Wheatley, a wonderful banquet and evening of music was celebrated amongst the international guests.
Robert Borja takes this opportunity to again sincerely thank Master Wheatley, all the visiting participants, and his own Taekwon-Do Central members & supporters.  He is highly satisfied with all preparations, warm hospitality shown Master Wheatley and foreign country guests, and the conduct of the seminar.  His achieved goal was success “Made in Germany”.
More interesting photos are available at: tae.kwon-do.com
Written by: Robert Borja - 9th August 2007
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||President Muhammad Awais Miraj V.President Moin-Ud-Din Miraj
: 13th August 2007, 14:16