Martial Art vs. Sport (again)

Discussion in 'Tae-Kwon-Do' started by puunui, Apr 20, 2012.

  1. andyjeffries

    andyjeffries Master of Arts

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2006
    Messages:
    1,858
    Likes Received:
    184
    Trophy Points:
    103
    Location:
    Stevenage, Herts, UK
    So if the Kukkiwon did require all grading examiners to have sat the Foreign Instructor's Course in Korea, would that alleviate your only negative?

    I don't think it's practical to have the Kukkiwon travel round looking at each school (there are FAR too many), but at least requiring that instructors have sat (and passed) the course in Korea shows they should know how to do Taekwondo reasonably well and that they know how to teach it.

    Note: I don't personally think this is necessary, I'm throwing it out for discussion.

    FWIW I haven't sat the FIC, but I plan to next year along with a few others I know that are going...
     
  2. ralphmcpherson

    ralphmcpherson Senior Master

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2009
    Messages:
    2,200
    Likes Received:
    48
    Trophy Points:
    108
    Location:
    australia
    Yeah, Andy that is my only real negative, although Im not a fan of skip dans and other very minor things, but overall, as Ive said here for ages, my only real gripe is that they dont ensure their standards are adhered to. One of my kukkiwon friends (who doesnt come here, so I think Im safe to say this) is really, really ordinary for a black belt. The guy running his school is just a businessman, its all about money and very little about quality martial arts instruction. My friend got his black belt in about 18 months, cant throw a punch, his kicks are sloppy, his form is really bad and has been taught no self defence/one steps at all. He regularly tells me how great it is that because he trains at a 'kukkiwon' club his rank has meaning and tells me how he can travel anywhere, walk into a kukkiwon dojang and his rank stays put. If he ever enters a quality kukkiwon dojang he will get the shock of his life, and while he may be allowed to wear ablack belt he will be way below standard. The instructor of his current club has ripped him off in my opinion, they slap the kukkiwon and WTF logos all over their website, dojang, merchandise, paperwork etc and are basically using the kukkiwon brand to cover up the fact that what they teach is very low standard martial arts. I bite my tongue everytime my mate tells me how he loves being part of the kukkiwon because it means his instructor is adhering to the "kukkiwons strict standards". My instructor could go out tomorrow, start a kukkiwon club and teach absolute rubbish, hand out black belts like candy, teach only a small part of the tkd curriculum, charge ridiculous amounts of money for gradings and pump out thousands of crappy martial arts students all under the kukkiwon banner, whose name he could abuse to trick students into thinking "well he must be good, the kukkiwon are the biggest governing body out there", and theres not a thing the kukkiwon could or would do about it. I cant stress enough that I dont have an issue with what the kukkiwon teach at all. I have heard enough from the likes yourself, Ethan, mastercole, Terry etc etc to know that I would gladly train at any of your clubs, as you all teach a very well rounded curriculum and would no doubt pump out quality martial artists.
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2012
  3. Kong Soo Do

    Kong Soo Do IKSDA Director

    • Supporting Member
    Joined:
    May 17, 2011
    Messages:
    2,419
    Likes Received:
    328
    Trophy Points:
    143
    Good post, thank you.
     
  4. Archtkd

    Archtkd 3rd Black Belt

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2009
    Messages:
    973
    Likes Received:
    99
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    St. Louis, MO
    Again, there is no such thing as a Kukkiwon club -- as in one belonging to, or managed by. What you see are clubs that practice either good, mediocre or really bad Kukkiwon style style taekwondo. There are many others that purport to teach Kukkiwon style taekwondo, the same way that thousands of other dojangs around the world might claim they teach "classic", "original, "traditional", "realistic", "roots", "Korean" or "real American" taekwondo.

    I think you have a dangerously flawed concept of what the Kukkiwon is, who Kukkiwon teachers are, and what Kukkiwan standards are supposed to be. The Kukkiwon is an international certifying, learning, training and research institution for Kukkiwon style taekwondo masters.

    The Kukkiwon has never and will never be involved in the business of running local dojangs, the same way that educational institutions are not involved with monitoring, supervising or managing their graduates and alumni. Think of it this way: Harvard has produced some of the best business and science leaders that the world has ever known. But, its graduates also include Jeff Skilling, the former CEO of the now defunct Enron Corp. and Theodore Kacynski, the Unabomber.
     
  5. chrispillertkd

    chrispillertkd Senior Master

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2007
    Messages:
    2,096
    Likes Received:
    106
    Trophy Points:
    123
    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA

    FWIW, it doesn't seem to me that Ralph is implying that the KKW somehow "manages" any school. Quite the opposite, in fact. Then again, I don't know of any large organization that actually manages individual clubs (with the possible exception of the ATA; I don't know how their franchise-thing works).

    I'm not sure how such a misconception - if it is accurate that anyone holds itt - would be "dangerous." It might be annoying to some KKW people, but dangerous? I don't know.

    I personally would be interested in knowing what KKW standards are, however, and how they relate to the KKW certifying people as black belts (if at all).

    Pax,

    Chris
     
  6. Steve

    Steve Mostly Harmless

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2008
    Messages:
    17,947
    Likes Received:
    3,682
    Trophy Points:
    308
    Location:
    Covington, WA
    So, if a hunter is to hunt, what would you say the equivalent is to a complete TKD practitioner? This is a puzzle I've been trying to sort out for a long time.

    Fill in the blank for me: Hunting is to hunter what _________ is to TKD Practitioner.

    Is the answer self defense? Well, not really if you never or rarely defend yourself. Golfers golf. Carpenters build things with wood. Computer programmers write code. Hunters hunt. What do martial artists do?

    If this is a tangent, I'll gladly start another thread. I just appreciate the point made above as skirting very close to a question I've been struggling to answer for a long time.
     
  7. terryl965

    terryl965 <center><font size="2"><B>Martial Talk Ultimate<BR

    • Martial Talk Alumni
    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2004
    Messages:
    41,259
    Likes Received:
    335
    Trophy Points:
    193
    Location:
    Grand Prairie Texas
    Life Journey is to a TKD Practitioner
     
  8. Steve

    Steve Mostly Harmless

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2008
    Messages:
    17,947
    Likes Received:
    3,682
    Trophy Points:
    308
    Location:
    Covington, WA
    Okay. But couldn't that be said about any life sport or hobby? How is a life journey unique to TKD?
     
  9. ralphmcpherson

    ralphmcpherson Senior Master

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2009
    Messages:
    2,200
    Likes Received:
    48
    Trophy Points:
    108
    Location:
    australia
    what do martial artists do? perhaps they "prepare" for self defence situations. I really dont know actually, but a good question Steve. May make an interesting new thread.
     
  10. terryl965

    terryl965 <center><font size="2"><B>Martial Talk Ultimate<BR

    • Martial Talk Alumni
    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2004
    Messages:
    41,259
    Likes Received:
    335
    Trophy Points:
    193
    Location:
    Grand Prairie Texas

    OK Steve with TKD life journey does not end with sport, Self Defense and training. It is about growing your mind, spirit and training. See with MMA you are only as good as your last fight, with most other arts once the training stops so does the ettiquete and respect for it but in TKD it is always there for the real TKD'ers. Hopefully that helps but probaly not can't really explain it once it is in your blood.
     
  11. GlassJaw

    GlassJaw Orange Belt

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2007
    Messages:
    80
    Likes Received:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Location:
    Michigan's Upper Peninsula
    Isn't is right there in the term "Tae Kwon Do practitioner"? It's the practice of TKD.

    Hunting is to the hunter as doing Tae Kwon Do is to the Tae Kwon Do doer.
     
  12. Steve

    Steve Mostly Harmless

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2008
    Messages:
    17,947
    Likes Received:
    3,682
    Trophy Points:
    308
    Location:
    Covington, WA
    Please don't deflect this onto me. I'd argue that sport is far more clear. The MMAist competes just as a golfer golfs or a bowler bowls. But you could argue, as I said, that excellence in either represents a life journey that grows the mind and spirit.

    So what does a TKDist do? FWIW, BJJ is absolutely a lifestyle. Im sure many would say that golf is the same. Etiquette and respect are simply synonyms for the culture of the activity and every activity has a culture. TKD isn't unique in that.
     
  13. Steve

    Steve Mostly Harmless

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2008
    Messages:
    17,947
    Likes Received:
    3,682
    Trophy Points:
    308
    Location:
    Covington, WA
    and what does that mean? What is the point of doing TKD? What's the measure? What's the product? The point was made that target practice is to a hunter what sparring is to a TKDist. So, the hunter hunts and that's the measure. The result is food. Or at the very least a dead animal.

    So, if the point is self defense, but you never defend yourself, can you call yourself a martial artist? And if not self defense, the what defines TKD?
     
  14. leadleg

    leadleg Blue Belt

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2009
    Messages:
    280
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Fill in the blank for me: Hunting is to hunter what training is to TKD Practitioner. Perfection of technique is the quest. Is it different than other arts or sports? Only if you want it to be.
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2012
  15. Cyriacus

    Cyriacus Senior Master

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2011
    Messages:
    3,827
    Likes Received:
    47
    Trophy Points:
    158
    Location:
    Australia
    Perfection of technique is the quest? Um... Thats an interesting opinion to have. I hope You dont mean Technique in the sense of the exact movements behind exactly how You execute a Kick, or Im afraid Ill have to confront You with a wall of text.

    If You more meant Method of Striking, rather than the technical aspects of the strikes themselves, thats ok.
     
  16. StudentCarl

    StudentCarl 3rd Black Belt

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2009
    Messages:
    935
    Likes Received:
    30
    Trophy Points:
    28
    Location:
    Grand Haven, MI
    When I was in the infantry, we trained to fight wars, but only the naive think they want to go to war. The political answer might be that we train so we won't have to fight--that by becoming dangerous and confident that we both deter violence and increase our chances of survival if TSHTF. I think the truer answer is that young men train as soldiers to explore a part of their identity and humanity (not the nice side, either). We have a capacity to violence. Watch sometime how little boys at play will turn anything into a weapon. Even with overprotective parents who try to prevent them from having any weapon toys, sticks and spoons and shoes become clubs, knives and guns.

    Not that it's necessarily a large part (depends on the person and the art, I think), but studying any skill that relates to violence makes you address a less-civilized part of who you are, a potential we all have and know we might need. If you are facing that part of yourself and training, even if you only think about it occasionally before you fall asleep at night, you are a martial artist. If someone never thinks of that, then I think there's an argument that the word 'martial' may not apply. One does not need to get in fights or have a real need to defend oneself to be a martial artist. I think the superior artist successfully avoids such situations.

    I think TKD is fundamentally martial. Even if it only increases your health, confidence, and athletic skills, those things make you less susceptible to being taken advantage of by more predatory people--you are no longer the weak gazelle at the back of the herd that the lion takes first.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  17. Steve

    Steve Mostly Harmless

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2008
    Messages:
    17,947
    Likes Received:
    3,682
    Trophy Points:
    308
    Location:
    Covington, WA
    Perfection of technique brings us full circle. The guy who practices at the range to perfect his aim , but never actually hunts. Can he be called a hunter? According to GlassJaw, he cannot. And I agree with him, even though this guy might have perfect technique.
     
  18. Steve

    Steve Mostly Harmless

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2008
    Messages:
    17,947
    Likes Received:
    3,682
    Trophy Points:
    308
    Location:
    Covington, WA
    I'm trying to understand you here. I hear you saying that the political answer is that people train in TKD to avoid violence, but that the real answer is to simply give a more constructive outlet to our more violent nature?

    If so, I'm not sure I can agree with the former, political answer. While we can all think of activities where you train in order to do something, I can't think of any activity that trains actively to not do something.

    The second answer I can actually agree with somewhat. It avoids the conundrum of training for self defense, but not actually ever defending oneself, or training to fight, but not actually ever getting into fights.
     
  19. StudentCarl

    StudentCarl 3rd Black Belt

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2009
    Messages:
    935
    Likes Received:
    30
    Trophy Points:
    28
    Location:
    Grand Haven, MI
    In that paragraph I was talking about the military specifically, as the use of the military is subject to national command authority. If you ask civilians why we have an army, I think that reasonable people will see the intent that it be a deterrent, rather than something we want to use (as in "Hey, we've got these divisions sitting around; let's start something so we can get our money's worth out of all that training.") I remember training to fight and wanting to fight to prove I was good...that was youth and naivete. You do what needs to be done, but it changes you.

    There's a difference between fighting and self-defense. I discourage the former and encourage the latter.

    Taekwondo is an individual activity, so there are limits to the parallel with the military. I was suggesting that while people may or may not claim self-defense as a reason they train, there is something in our human nature that recognizes the potential for violence in all of us. I think people also train to explore their own nature, beyond the practical defense, social, fitness and other benefits.
     
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2012
  20. Archtkd

    Archtkd 3rd Black Belt

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2009
    Messages:
    973
    Likes Received:
    99
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    St. Louis, MO
    There is another question about another post i put on this thread that I would like to answer, but it will help if ensure I understand some things: Is your taekwondo organization made up of several clubs owned or operated by different owners, who trained under different master instructors? Or is it an organization run students of one grandmaster who has financial interests in all the affiliated clubs?

    Where do the dues and testing fees that individual members at individual clubs end up?

    Are the instructors at clubs employees of the organization or independent operators/franchisees, etc?

    Actually what is a taekwondo club? A tax exempt non-profit entity that operates in facilities it rents or has built or is it a for-profit business?123
     

Share This Page