The International Umpire Course was a great success. It was conducted by Grand Master Wim Bos, Master Alberto Katz and Master Harry Vones in Budapest (Hungary) on February 14-15, 2015.
Finally 138 persons got the ITF Umpire Certificate from the registered 153 persons representing 24 countries, even a lot of Masters with 7th and 8th degree. These numbers made this IUC the second largest considering the number of participants and the first considering the represented countries among the IUCs organized ever.
The precious event took place in the Danubius Health Spa Resort Helia in Budapest on the bank of the river Danube.
The leaders – Grand Master Bos, Master Katz and Master Vones, and Master Coos van den Heuvel and Master Juan Ferrando – arrived to Budapest on Thursday. They had a warm reception from Master László Harmat, the founder of the Hungarian ITF Taekwondo and Péter Szász, the president of the organizing committee.
Before the 21st IUC a lot of work and discussions were completed wholly lead by Master Katz and Master Vones with the help of emails and videoconferences. Master Katz performed and coordinated the preparation works by adding his huge professional experience and knowledge.
On Friday Grand Master Bos, Master Ferrando, Master Coos and Master Alexander Dunbar accompanied by Master László Harmat and Péter Szász visited the planned locations of the ITF Taekwon-Do World Cup to be held in Budapest in October, 2016: 3 hotels and 2 biggest sport halls.
While the Committee visited the locations of the planned World Cup Master Katz and Master Vones planned, prepared and tailor-made the events of the forthcoming two days. And the Masters conducted a 3-hours long course on software operation to the three IT professionals of the organizing committee.
On Saturday morning, after Master Katz and Master Vones prepared the room for the course and the participants arrived to their place, Master László Harmat, the founder of the Hungarian ITF Taekwon-do asked Grand Master Wim Bos, the director of the ITF to open the 21st ITF International Umpire Course.
During the theoretical part of the morning session we discussed and analyzed the rules of all events lead by Master Katz, useful explanations were added by Grand Master Bos and Master Vones shared exact and logical definitions, with special focus on the latest changes made in last December.
Master Katz emphasized several times that this seminar was a kind of workshop, and together with Grand Master Bos and Master Vones encouraged the participants to ask in order to create a useful and beneficial debate. The leaders think it is very important to create the rules of umpiring together making it better and better this way.
The Masters leading the Course gave clear answers to every dubious question, often illustrating them with visible examples.
During the afternoon session with the help of the experienced Masters everybody could practice how to use the hand signals and the procedure of the umpire team: correct order of the team, entering and leaving, bows, jury president, IT professionals, tasks of the center and corner referees and their communications. The sparring was the next in three rings simultaneously which were played by the experienced competitors of the organizing team presenting all the critical situations from an umpire’s point of view. Upon the direction of Master Katz and Master Vones the umpires were changed frequently in order to giving a chance to every participant to practice.
Closing the Saturday course Grand Master Bos, Master Katz and Master Vones summarized the main events of the day, and a photo was taken about the whole group, Masters and participants.
The next hours were spent with relaxation. At the dinner party a string quartet entertained the guests, and then the Masters conducting the course got a Hungarian present including a Rubik’s cube and a bottle of palinka from Péter Szász, the host of the event. To close the dinner party a huge marzipan cake with IUC tag on it was brought in, Grand Master Bos cut the first slice and the cake was divided between the guests who ate them gladly.
The Sunday morning session was again a practical course. First of all the rules of power test were detailed. Master Katz showed the correct gestures and the procedure, and focused on the mistakes and the incorrect performance.
After these the rules of special technique came. The Masters were bombed with a lot of questions which were clarified and made understandable by Master Katz and Master Vones.
A dozen of questions were clarified related to the pre-arranged sparring too.
The individual and team patterns were not left out neither, the critical details were also clarified by the Masters.
The course was excellently illustrated and made understandable by the video shots prepared by Master Katz and Master Vones in advance, which focused on and slowed the most important situations. By the request of the Masters Péter Szász, the organizer shared the video shots with the participants via email.
Although the program of the course was quite tight and difficult, the professional participants were continuously impressed by the well-prepared, open minded, sometimes playful, sometimes funny way of teaching of Grand Master Bos, Master Katz and Master Vones, even by their high level technical presentation.
In the name of the organizers we thank to the ITF that we had the chance to organize the 21st IUC in Hungary. We thank to Grand Master Wim Bos, especially to Master Alberto Katz, and Master Harry Vones for conducting the course on very high level, to Master Juan Ferrando and Master Coos van den Heuvel for their assistance and to the participants representing 24 countries for their coming and taking part in this event. We hope that you all enjoyed this great course and we are waiting for seeing you again on the ITF World Cup in 2016.