When Is the Title of Sabun Earned?

Discussion in 'Tae-Kwon-Do' started by dancingalone, Feb 21, 2011.

  1. dancingalone

    dancingalone Grandmaster

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    I am curious when it is appropriate for your students or yourself to use the title of sabun? Is it based on dan rank or something else such as opening your own school? I suppose the answer depends to an extent from which group you are a member of?
     
  2. puunui

    puunui Senior Master

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    It's Sabum, not sabun. The Kukkiwon awards you the title when you graduate from the Instructor Course and receive the Instructor Qualification certificate.
     
  3. Earl Weiss

    Earl Weiss Senior Master

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    In the ITF it's 4-6 Dan.
     
  4. Manny

    Manny Senior Master

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    If I recall sabum nim it's from 4th dan and up, below 4th dan is kyosa nim.

    Manny
     
  5. SahBumNimRush

    SahBumNimRush Master of Arts

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    In our association it gets a bit murkier.. .

    1st dan: Jokyonim
    2nd and 3rd dan: Boo Sahbumnim
    4th dan and above: Sahbumnim

    HOWEVER, there is only ever 1 sahbumnim in a school at a time. For example, if there are 2 4th dans, 2 5th dans, 2 6th dans, and 2 7th dans in a school, whoever the highest ranking person is who happens to be in the class at the time is THE sahbumnim at the time. I have no idea how accurate this is, but it was the way it was handed down to us.
     
  6. dancingalone

    dancingalone Grandmaster

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    Much as I expected there seems to be no uniform criteria for the usage of the title. Thanks, all.
     
  7. andyjeffries

    andyjeffries Master of Arts

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    I understood that Sabum wasn't an awarded title, but that it came with certain rank (4th Dan from my understanding).

    Now, the Kukkiwon certifies International Instructors and I've seen some certificates that say "International Master Instructor" on them (or something like that), but as I understand it, that just to prove you're a "Kukkiwon-certified Master Instructor" rather than a "Kukkiwon-certified 4th Dan" and "Master".

    Grandmaster I understood was more of an awarded title, a grandmaster gives you the title when you reach around 7th-8th Dan.

    Certainly in the UK when someone reaches 4th Dan in Kukki-Taekwondo they are generally accepted to be a Master and people who have done the Kukkiwon Instructor Course are fairly rare over here (there are some, but I wouldn't consider it popular/normal).
     
  8. Daniel Sullivan

    Daniel Sullivan Grandmaster

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    Generally, fourth dan is usually the minimum rank that it is acceptable in KMA (varries from art to art).

    Daniel
     
  9. puunui

    puunui Senior Master

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    that is when the majority of Taekwondoin in Korea take the Instructor Course, at 4th Dan.


    In the Korean language part, it has the word "sabum" instead of Master.


    There was a statement from the Kukkiwon a while back that said that those who were 1st through 5th Dan were Master level, and those 6th Dan and higher were grandmaster level. I noticed after that came out, a whole lot more people started calling themselves Grandmaster. :) Personally I think it was a mistranslation between yudanja (1st-5th dan) and Kodanja (6th Dan and higher).
     
  10. puunui

    puunui Senior Master

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    I think today there is a consensus of sorts that says you can get the title sabum at 4th Dan.
     
  11. Earl Weiss

    Earl Weiss Senior Master

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    Perhaps Glenn or Mr. Talbot can elaborate but my understanding is that the title is Sabum or perhaps another phonetic romanization, but the suffix "Nim" would not really be part of the title and is not properly used if referring to yourself.

    I believe the suffix Nim means something like respect. So it would be akin to referring to "respectedl Instructor" . You would refer to someone else as "Respected Instructor" but your own classification as "Instructor" not "respectful instructor".
     
  12. puunui

    puunui Senior Master

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    Right. On the Kukkiwon Instructor Qualification certificates, it states "sabum" in Korean, and not Sabumnim. You don't really refer to yourself as Sabumnim; it is how others address you, generally juniors or if you wish to be polite. I've seen Korean born seniors address their juniors as "Lee Sabum" or "Kim Sabum" for example.
     
  13. andyjeffries

    andyjeffries Master of Arts

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    I'd also heard (from a Korean language teacher a while ago) that it's mildly offensive if you show that respect to a junior. After discussions with her (and with Grandmaster) it seems that you are supposed to show less respect to your juniors (for example with not using the -nim suffix, not bowing as deeply) than to your seniors, otherwise it reduces the level of respect your showing the seniors. In effect, if I treat a low ranked individual and a high ranked individual the same, then I'm not showing an appropriate deference to the senior.

    Do you agree with this?

    Personally in a wider context I prefer to treat everyone with respect until they prove unworthy, but in a Taekwondo context I am more mindful of the feelings of my seniors than my juniors (particularly as they are often from a different culture) so will do what is required to help their kibun (I don't know if help or be nice to would be more appropriate here).
     
  14. andyjeffries

    andyjeffries Master of Arts

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    So when do you consider someone to have the title Grandmaster? A particular grade? When granted by an existing Grandmaster? When granted by one of the Kwan Jangs (or ex-Kwan Jangs) of the original kwans? When completing a 1st Class Instructor Course? Something else?
     
  15. troubleenuf

    troubleenuf Blue Belt

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    I think all these titles are american made. We used to think that Master was good enough, but then we had to add grandmaster to the list, now its the honorable great grandmaster so and so. My students call me Master and thats it.
    Just a note, I have some Korean students in my college class and they think its kind of strange when they see americans bowing and scraping to high ranking koreans. They tell me in Korea that just isnt normal.


     
  16. puunui

    puunui Senior Master

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    I agree that it how I see it being applied in a Korean born context. I can also see non-Korean borns viewing this and taking offense, the idea of "respect flows equally both up and down" thing. There is no real equality in Korean culture; you are either higher or lower, and it is pretty much immediately apparent from the get go which position you are in. Those who are senior are treated in a certain way, just like those who are junior are treated in a certain way.
     
  17. puunui

    puunui Senior Master

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    There really is no standard for the term Grandmaster. If I had to go with something, I would go with the Kukkiwon definition of Kukkiwon 6th Dan or higher. But I don't know if this definition is still valid. Then there is the standard of you are a master or grandmaster when your teacher says you are, similar to the old saying that you are a man when your father says you are a man. But then that would mean that those who are estranged from their teacher or father would be out of luck. Sinmoo Hapkido has a whole list of titles which correspond to each dan rank. I don't know who came up with that one, I don't think it was GM Ji, so I never bothered to remember the specifics of that system. There is a grandmaster designation, which I believe is 9th Dan. 8th Dan is Chief Master I believe. I might be confusing it with the Kuk Sool Won titles.
     
  18. andyjeffries

    andyjeffries Master of Arts

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    I think the latter one is the one my grandmaster uses for grandmaster, but for master he just considers 4th Dan and above a master.

    Surely though they'd still have a teacher or they wouldn't progress in rank to be able to get the title that comes at around that rank?

    I know as you get more senior you need less external influence in your training, you can self-train - but an examiner is used to evaluate you for rank so surely they're also ideally placed to provide assistance on getting to the required standard.

    Another question, following on from the latter definition earlier (when awarded by your teacher), do you think it's normal that it comes at the same time as a promotion or as a completely separate issue at a separate time?
     
  19. andyjeffries

    andyjeffries Master of Arts

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    That's what I understood. It feels strange to me, but it's becoming more important that I'm conscious of not offending my seniors.
     
  20. Earl Weiss

    Earl Weiss Senior Master

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    FWIW in the ITF you should have learend the complete syllabus and have a level of ability and knowledge wih regard to that syllabus by the time you promote to 7th Dan at which point the term "Master Instructor" applies.

    There is a book called "Living the Martial Way" which I really liked. (The author has absolutley no relation to the ITF). Among other things it decries a point at which an unnamed organization reduced the rank for "Master" to 4th Dan.

    It seems that in this organization there were addittional parts of the curriculum yet to be learned after reaching 4th Dan, for promotion to higher ranks.

    His criticism was something to the effect of "How can you be a "Master" of a system when you have not yet learned parts of the system?"

    I felt the criticism had merit.123
     

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