For those of you who don’t know, I am a Taekwon-do instructor – partner and I have our own club: Oaks Martial Arts. On a Wednesday morning we run our ladies’ only class. Partner is allowed in on the proviso that he doesn’t interrupt the female banter with any sort of ‘male’ angle and that he doesn’t pull a face when anything to do with women’s body parts are discussed – you know: pissing ourselves because of weak pelvic floors, that kind of thing.
Today was the first day back after the summer break and we had several new people trying it out. As they entered the dojang (training hall) they were met by me. Ordinarily, I don’t think that this in itself is necessarily a bad thing. I like to think that I am quite a cheery soul and unless it’s been a particularly bad morning with the teens, I generally greet our students with a smile. This morning, however, these nervous newbies were confronted by me in a sling, with bloodied sterie strips plastered in three places on my shoulder, a swollen finger, that hasn’t got a hope in hell of throwing a punch any time soon as it no longer bends and a broken foot, which makes me shuffle.
“You’re going to love Taekwon-do!” I chirped to them, as they opened the door. I could see their faces turn from a mild nervous state to outright panic, as they searched around desperately for an escape route. One of our regulars breezed in, seemingly unfazed by my new look. Thank god for that, I thought to myself. She’ll calm their nerves with her reassuring air.
“You’ve lost weight” she said.
“No, I’m sure I haven’t” I replied. “If anything I’ve put it on.”
“You’ve lost muscle then” came her reply.
I was crushed. Now it was partner’s turn to look nervous. Oh shit, he was probably thinking to himself. I’ve got to live with the fall out from that comment.
“I think she must like pain” piped up another regular. Now it was partner’s chance to relax the mood. “Oh, she’s always liked pain” he replied, with a cheeky smile, whilst stacking the paddle pads into the cupboard.
I glanced over at the new ladies, wondering how they were bearing up. They were smiling. Ah yes, I reassured myself, if there’s one thing that will unite a group of women, it’s a bit of sexual innuendo. I will allow partner that quip, I thought, but from now on in class, he must know his place.
Taekwon-do: the art of hand and foot…oh bollocks
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