From Okinawa to Korea

Discussion in 'Tae-Kwon-Do' started by Michele123, Jan 8, 2018.

  1. Dirty Dog

    Dirty Dog MT Senior Moderator Staff Member

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    Like General Choi and the ITF, the use of the name Soo Bahk Do didn't come around till long after the unification movement was well established.
     
  2. oftheherd1

    oftheherd1 Senior Master

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    I have often wondered about that. Historical evidence of the Japanese trying to turn the Koreans into poor Japanese is recent enough to be incontestable. During that time they destroyed many historical records the Koreans had, except for those few their own historians might have wanted. They also apparently outlawed Koreans studying martial arts except for a very few, and then only Japanese martial arts. They certainly outlawed Koreans speaking their own language.

    However, some records pertaining to Korea apparently survived not only in Korea, but elsewhere, mainly China. China was a suzerain over Korea for a very long time. Then there is the oriental belief that the oldest is best, and native is best, so one should be willing to talk about any skills showing oldest age of the skill in your own country, and your country having the most skilled of the skilled practitioners.

    So how many martial arts were native, from Japan, or from China? Or from elsewhere?

    I have never understood those things since no people of the western world would stoop to such petty actions as that.
     
  3. TrueJim

    TrueJim Master Black Belt

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    My understanding is that in 1958 when the Korea Amateur Sports Association (KASA) required that the Korea Tang Soo Do Association and the Korea Kong Soo Do Association to merge (if they wished to become members of KASA), the resulting association chose to call itself the Korea Soo Bahk Do Association. It seems to me that the unification movement was really more of a post-Korean-War thing, is that true? So that'd be about a 5 year difference I think?
     
  4. TrueJim

    TrueJim Master Black Belt

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    Is "outlawed" the right word? I was under the impression that it worked more like this: If you were a Korean who wanted to provide for your family, you had better go-along with the Japanese occupiers. Otherwise you would have a very difficult time finding work, keeping a home, sending your kids to school, etc. So it's not that Korean folk traditions were outlawed per se, but boy oh boy...the sooner you completely embraced Japanese culture, the sooner your family will have some rice in their bowls.
     
  5. Dirty Dog

    Dirty Dog MT Senior Moderator Staff Member

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    The unification started, was established, was interrupted by the Korean War and resumed after the cease fire.
     
  6. Jaeimseu

    Jaeimseu 2nd Black Belt

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    I’m pretty sure the US flag is displayed incorrectly here. I’m just pointing it out in case it matters to the school owner.


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  7. _Simon_

    _Simon_ Brown Belt

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    Have been reading the thread, that's really awesome to hear Michele! Always great to hear when people start and how much they're loving it. If you enjoy it, keep doing it! Only gets better! And yeah your experience in the other style will definitely help heaps, but for sure you may have to alter some techniques. I remember when I went from one karate style to another, there were a few habits that I had to change (going from semi-circling the feet when moving in stance to straight line movement, chambering fist higher etc), and it took a little while as they were so ingrained, but got there with enough focus, attention and practice. Always harder to break an old habit than form a new one I reckon ;).

    But enjoy the journey, let us know how it goes :), I also can't wait to get back into training again this year in a new venture, scary but exciting:)
     
  8. TrueJim

    TrueJim Master Black Belt

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    You are correct sir. Unfortunately the backs of the banners are white, so they can't be flipped around.
     
  9. Earl Weiss

    Earl Weiss Senior Master

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    Banner with stars to right is correct but when displayed with other flags at the head of the room USA Flag should be furthest to the right.
     
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  10. Michele123

    Michele123 Orange Belt

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    Our association had a sparing seminar yesterday. It’s the first time I’ve sparred in about 18 years, and the first time I’ve ever sparred in Tae Kwan Do. There are a lot of rules for TKD sparring! So many illegal targets! In my Karate Dojo, sparring was for practicing self-defense. There were no illegal targets, though upper belts were expected to not use full power and just tag their opponent. The instructors did emphasize that this is the “sport” side of TKD. I’m not sure I’m a fan of the sport side. I’m not sure I’m not a fan. It is strange sparing but not being able to use practical techniques and targets.


    On another note, I’m definitely not as energetic or in shape as I used to be. The sparing was a lot more exhausting than I remember it being. And I definitely am not as light on my feet as I used to be. That fact is actually kind of depressing. I’m hoping I can get back to close to where I was, but I am guessing I will never be back to 18 year old me. :(


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  11. _Simon_

    _Simon_ Brown Belt

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    Ah yeah the sparring style may be a bit different, but you may end up really enjoying it. My old style was full contact bare knuckle sparring, but I entered an all-styles non-contact point sparring tournament a few times last year, and I thoroughly enjoy both styles! I like how each type emphasises a different aspect and allows you to work on developing that, so whatever style you enter into, the focus can be on what you can learn and develop in this, rather than what it's lacking. But see how you go anyway :)

    And yeah it'd be challenging getting back into sparring, I'm sure your energy will come back. And whilst it may not be like it used to, you can really start to focus on other aspects of sparring, like not so much explosive quickness, but being smoother, working on angles and footwork off to the sides, accuracy etc. Speaking to many older martial artists, most of them speak of how they're not as fast as they were etc, but that they really can deepen their practice and work on how to generate power etc without big grand speedy movements. I'm 30, and I definitely can feel more niggles and I don't recover as well as I did in my 20s. But it's given me a deeper understanding of how the body works, how I can recover better, and also to focus more on warming up, and learning the importance of mobility and relaxation etc, and I'm usually able to still train in a similar way, but smarter now hehe
     
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  12. oftheherd1

    oftheherd1 Senior Master

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    Well, I wasn't there, but I have had Koreans tell me it was prohibited. Law? I can't promise that was so, but it was apparently enforced as if it were law if it actually wasn't. As I mentioned, the prohibition against speaking Korean was apparently some form of law or regulation. There were boxes at the police boxes to pay the fine on the spot, or so I was told.
     
  13. TrueJim

    TrueJim Master Black Belt

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    Same here; the older Korean gentleman who spoke with me about it didn't know if it was "law" per se, but he said it was very clear that if you didn't go along with those kinds of prohibitions, your family was going to suffer. I have heard some revisionists exclaim, "But it wasn't illegal!" -- but I don't think the revisionists are giving enough weight the fact that a prohibition can be even more chilling than a law (since the victim can't even rely on the courts for recourse).

    And then of course after the occupation ended, what becomes of the people who did "go along" with the occupiers in order to protect their families...now they are branded as "sympathizers"? It must have been nightmarish.
     
  14. Michele123

    Michele123 Orange Belt

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    So, first a couple questions. What is the name for Dojo in Tae Kwan Do? Everyone here just calls it the gym. Also, is there a Korean word for “Sensei?” Our instructor is a far enough degree that he’s called “master” (at which degree does that start?)

    Also, tournaments, worth it? There is a tournament coming up and it’s the first since joining that I would be eligible for. But it’s expensive. And since I’m still a white belt I don’t have any experience breaking boards. (We didn’t do this in my old style). I don’t have great stamina now that I’m old (36) so I wouldn’t do well sparring. (It was always my weakest area anyway).

    Anyhow, I’d love any advice you all have to give.


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  15. ravenofthewood

    ravenofthewood White Belt

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    Korean for gym is "dojang.". Master is "Sahbumnim." Being considered a master usually begins at fourth degree black belt.

    Does this tournament offer poomsae competition? If you would like to do the tournament, I would recommend starting with just entering in poomsae. Wait on the sparring and board breaking until you feel more confident. Tournaments should be fun, not super stressful. :) As a white belt, don't feel like doing a tournament is a must for you at this stage. It can be a great opportunity to bond with the other students in your school and test yourself against students from other schools, but it won't contribute much to your development as a martial artist at this point. However, if you are nervous about your next belt test, doing your poomsae in a higher pressure environment may help you feel more confident on test day.
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2018
  16. andyjeffries

    andyjeffries Master of Arts

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    In "Taekwondo" (you should probably not call it KWAN if you're doing the art) it's called a Dojang.

    The Korean word for Sensei is Sabum (사범), however, if you're referring to someone else you should always say Sabumnim (사범님) and it goes after their name, not before.

    In Kukkiwon Taekwondo generally it's seen as 4th degree/Dan. There are some very verbal people muddying the waters recently saying you're only a master if you've passed the Kukkiwon Master Instructor course, but I'd say 98% of people don't agree with that. In ITF Taekwon-do it's 7th degree/Dan.

    I would say anything that a)makes you put in a period of preparation/polishing and b)puts you under stress to perform is good for your Taekwondo development. It's not the result that's important, but the process. Just my 2p worth of opinion.
     
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  17. _Simon_

    _Simon_ Brown Belt

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    I reckon tournaments are great. I'm a karate-ka, but will give my input if welcomed hehe. For years and years I was never interested in tournaments, just loved training in the dojo. I never considered martial arts to be along any lines of trying to 'win' anything, no did that motivate me, and it seemed to me to be opposite to its deeper aspects.

    Then last year when I left the dojo, I had a strange curiosity to compete, and to just give it a go. Which is really bizarre! It was never to win, but it seemed like a really great challenge, ESPECIALLY the forms division, which I really loved the idea of... You go out there, in the centre of the mat, announce your form, and then just go to a whole different place, as though no one's watching you, and perform it as best as you can. Really appealed to something in me.. it was such a cool way to express everything you've learned, and give it your all. And also to work through letting go of any self-criticism and judgement you're hanging onto, or fear of judgement, as you're walking out there and literally being judged haha albeit in a different sense.

    So I did forms and sparring, and loved the experience so much, and I'll probably compete this year too. I love the calm, focus, technique, thoughtfulness, intention, purpose, power and grace of forms; and I love the speed, explosiveness, strategy, accuracy, technique, patience and movement of sparring.

    Also was an amazing experience to get together with other martial artists and support each other and also learn from each other too.

    So as long as you don't do it out of peer-pressure (your peers or instructor trying to force you to do it) or self-pressure, and do it because you actually want to, that's pretty important. It's one aspect of martial arts, not a necessary one, but the avenue is there to explore, and it can definitely help you develop certain skills and learn a bunch like I did, and also the preparation leading up to it is fun too!

    It's totally up to you, but the advice about giving the forms a go is great, if you're not as confident in sparring that's okay.

    And by the way you are not old haha ;)

    If you do compete please let us know how you go!


    Very well said!
     
  18. WaterGal

    WaterGal Master Black Belt

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    As a female adult color belt, you probably won't have many competitors at the tournament. In my experience, there's usually maybe 3-6 adult color belt women in the whole tournament, so they'll often lump all color belt adult women together in one or two brackets. FWIW, it seems like they're usually moms like you who started taking class with their kids and got into it.

    Whether it's "worth it" is up to you - it depends on how much you like competing, and your financial situation. WTF-style TKD tournaments do tend to be expensive, because the sparring style means they need to to rent a huge amount of mats and a bunch of expensive electronic scoring systems and pay lots of refs and judges.

    TKD tournaments are usually divided up into multiple events that you can compete in. The universal ones are "traditional forms" (you pick a form to compete with, and usually they're open to any traditional TKD forms, even from other styles of TKD), and sparring. Other events that are sometimes offered include board breaking, creative forms (forms that you invent), family forms (multiple family members do a form together, like synchronized swimming or something), demo team competition, sport poomsae (where the judges tell you what form to do), tag-team sparring (where you have a group of sparring competitors who take turns swapping into the ring), and other events. Usually you pay a certain amount for the first event and then a little extra for each additional one you want to do.

    If you want to compete in board breaking, and have some cash to spare, go for it! Just make sure you practice your board breaks ahead of time and are confident with them (and that you check the rules to make sure that it's something that's allowed - I've seen some tournaments specify what kind of breaks they're looking for, based on belt rank).

    Edit: If you're unsure, it wouldn't hurt to just go and watch this one to see what it's like.
     
  19. JR 137

    JR 137 Senior Master

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    @WaterGal ’s response about if you’re unsure just go watch a tournament is great advice.

    Some people love competing, some don’t. Everyone’s got their likes and dislikes, and there’s nothing wrong with that.

    I love competing and I hate it. I’m not a fan of point fighting. Part of that might very well be that I’m not great at it. I’d say I’m average to slightly better. My main thing is I don’t care much for the rules, as it’s a game of tag when you break it down.

    I really like competing in kata. I like to think I’m pretty good at it. When I’m up there, I don’t think of it as competing against anyone but myself. All I try to do is do my Kata the best I’ve ever done it. I can’t control how well or poorly everyone else does theirs, nor can I control what goes through a judge’s head. I go out and try to nail it, and everything else takes care of itself.

    The best part about competing is the preparation IMO. It forces me to look at my weaknesses and address them head-on. There’s no putting things off. I work extra hard at my conditioning, my flexibility, my technique, my everything. I haven’t competed in 2 years, and I honestly feel like I’ve regressed a bit because of it. I’ve improved in some areas since then, but I’m not where I was in other ways. I was supposed to compete a few months ago, but I had family obligations. I started training for it, but didn’t follow through as much as I should have after I had to back out.

    Competing has made me better. To me, the competition itself wasn’t really the focus. It was the preparation that really stood out every time.
     
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  20. _Simon_

    _Simon_ Brown Belt

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    Very well said! Exact right, some people love it and some don't, and that's totally fine. I was one who wanted nothing to do with it, then became someone who loved them, probably was because of a perspective shift and how I viewed tournaments. Just like JR it made me better as a martial artist, I looked at and worked on things I wouldn't have before, it pushed my development of speed, technique, footwork and movement in general, and it really was about the preparation. The event itself is awesome and there's a really great energy in the air too.

    But also well worth just watching, I watched this particular tournament circuit for years and years and only last year finally wanted to compete and be a part of it.
     

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