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Eye Kwon Do

By Bill Koehne

Jumping, punching, spinning and kicking thrill the fans of
martial art greats, like Bruce Lee, CHuck Norris or
Jackie Chan,but there is more to martial arts then just
flashy fighting. Our family knows this first-hand.

My son, Willy, and I recently earned our black belts and
my daughter, Janet, a red belt in Tae Kwon Do. We spent
about three years training to achieve this and intend to
continue training for many more years. As we hone our
skills and learn more about this martial art, it becomes
more apparent how it applies to one’s endeavors,
especially for me pursuing tournament angling.

Tae Kwon Do literally translated means, “the hand, the foot, the way.” The hand and foot parts are readily visible in this art. The way, not easily defined in Western terms, is more involved and is what
makes Tae Kwon Do an art.

Learning the skills of kicking, punching and blocking is similar to learning jigging, rigging and trolling. Time, practice and hard work are what develops these skills. However there is a large difference between knowing a skill and applying it in a competitive manner. How these skills are developed and applied leads to success.

In sparring you need to be reactionary and responsive to your opponents motions and stillness. In angling, the same is true. Lock yourself on a poor pattern or location and you die on the spot. If an opponent transmits his next move, you react appropriately. If the wind changes direction or intensity, you positively capitalize on it. The ability to make spontaneous and clear decisions is often the difference between success and failure.

Punching and kicking wildly can be compared to screaming around a lake without having patience for the needed bite. A game plan is essential. Flexibility and adaptation are key. A lucky knockout blow may get one win, but it takes more to finish on top consistently.

Being a champion requires diligence, hard work and a code of discipline and conduct, none of which comes easily.

Tae Kwon Do has a set of 5 life tenets to be followed to have a complete and successful life. Practicing these as a tournament angler can also lead to a successful fishing career.

The first tenet is courtesy. This is much more than being polite, both on and off the water. In competition it is important to remember that it is a contest of skills and not persons. The way professionals treat their fans, the public and their fellow competitors speaks great volumes about their character.

The second tenet is integrity. It is important to search your soul and be your best. Strong ethics leave no doubt that your achievements are deserved. Policing yourself and fellow anglers maintains not only the integrity of the individual fisherman, but also the sport of tournament angling as a whole.

The third tenet is perseverance, to stick with it and not give up. Knowledge can be learned, and wisdom is earned through experience over time. Diligence, patience and growth from past experiences help to lead to eventual success. Solid, long-term commitment is necessary for success; lack of commitment is a formula for failure.

The fourth tenet is self-control, balancing temper, emotions and desire to allow for better decision making. Self-control doesn’t mean you lack feelings, but that you direct these feelings to make the right decision. Maintaining your self-control can be the difference between making the right or wrong call. Often times the most challenging question asked during a day of tournament fishing is, “Should I stay or should I go?”

The last tenet is indomitable spirit. This can only be obtained by practicing courtesy, integrity, perseverance and self-control. This is a path that is quiet, consistent and true. Adversity, problems and difficulties are overcome. You must develop a spirit that cannot be subdued, to always conquer, no matter what the situation presents. This is how champions are made.

These five tenets will not only aid you in becoming a winner in martial arts and tournament angling, but will make you a winner in life, too.

Go out and kick some walleye fin developing your knowledge of Eye Kwon Do.

Of all the magazine and fishing articles I have ever written, this one is still my favorite!

Magazine Story

Bill Koehne

Email Bill