Dynamic forms

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One thing I was thinking lately - do forms need to be static? By "static" I mean how the Taegeuks have gone relatively unchanged over several decades. If you were to join a school in the 1990s and progress to blue belt, you will learn Taegeuk 4. If you are teaching at that school in the 2000s, 2010s, 2020s, and so on, then you will be teaching blue belts Taegeuk 4, and it will be the same Taegeuk 4 that you learned as a blue belt.

From the perspective of what the student will learn or benefit from the form (in other words: absent bureaucracy and testing requirements), is it needed to always be this way? As an example of what I mean, what if instead of doing Taegeuk 4 as written, I were to teach a form that is:
  • Moving left and right: Double knife block, spearhand (from Taegeuk 4)
  • Moving forward: Double knife block, spearhand, spinning hammerfist, punch (from Palgwe 4)
  • Moving right and left: Low double knife block, double out block, kick, double punch (from Palgwe 6)
  • Moving backward: Double knife block, spearhand, spinning backfist, arc strike (modification of the second set)
What would be the net loss to my students to teach this form instead of to teach the others that it came from? (Aside from not knowing Taegeuk 4 in competitions or when transferring to another school)?

One thing I'm thinking is that forms could be built dynamically. In the example above, let's start this form in May. First week, we cover the first 6 moves. Second week, we add in the spinning hammerfist and punch. Third week, we add in the next set. And fourth week we finish the form. Let's call this May Form.

Then in June, we start building June form. This form may be built from pieces of forms, or from combining techniques together in different ways. We refine the May form and build the June form. In July, we start building the July form. We practice the May form, refine the June form, and build the July form. In August, we drop the May form. Those techniques may get taught in the August form. Or those techniques may wait a bit before coming back into rotation.

In the schools I've been a part of, most people only retain what is needed for testing, and often that's not all of the forms. So I've seen it work in this way from the student's perspective. It also means anyone coming in from outside is on relatively equal footing as those who are learning the forms in-house, because everyone is learning something new. And students can remember the forms they really connect with and continue to practice on their own if they so choose.
 
One thing I was thinking lately - do forms need to be static? By "static" I mean how the Taegeuks have gone relatively unchanged over several decades. If
Yes. If you think a their needs to be a change then don't think you have to keep one and throw away the other. There is something in my form that I could have easily discarded but Hoshin showed a similar technique and I'm pretty sure it's the same technique in my form. I will ask the head of the Jow Ga association about the technique. I'm curious to see what he says.

There are a couple of techniques in the beginner form that use a closed fist and this makes the technique confusing. But if I use a open hand then the technique makes sense.

Firm history should always be their. There's no need to be either or.
 
One thing I was thinking lately - do forms need to be static? By "static" I mean how the Taegeuks have gone relatively unchanged over several decades

From the perspective of what the student will learn or benefit from the form (in other words: absent bureaucracy and testing requirements), is it needed to always be this way? As an example of what I mean, what if instead of doing Taegeuk 4 as written, I were to teach a form that is:
If the Taegeuks have gone unchanged for several decades, and during that time a number of (supreme?) grand masters have come and gone without changing them, is there a functional reason why they didn't? One must assume they had a good understanding of their art. Maybe better than you? Will your changes alter the meaning of the form or render the next moves less effective? I'm just throwing out some things to consider - I have no idea of your forms' details.

The other question is, "What is/will be the purpose of the form?" If the blocks are just blocks and punches just punches with no second level applications (as in Okinawan forms) and the main function of the form is to just practice the basics, develop biomechanics and form, changing the moves around probably won't destroy the form's integrity. And if deviation from the standard is done without regard to competitive or organizational rules (at least as you do them in-house) I suppose it is NOT needed for them to stay the same. You can even change the terminology, belt colors and other things as well. All depends on how "traditional" and accepted in your MA community you want to be.
Form history should always be there. There's no need to be either or.
This might be an option for you. Keep the original and design some in-house forms for your own use in teaching.
 
Will your changes alter the meaning of the form or render the next moves less effective?
You change the form to make it more effective.

For example, your form has a hand push. If you can add in a leg hooking, you can change that move from "push your opponent away" into "take your opponent down". Will that be a plus?

Here is an example that I ask my student to integrate "leg skill" into Taiji form.

 
You change the form to make it more effective.

For example, your form has a hand push. If you can add in a leg hooking, you can change that move from "push your opponent away" into "take your opponent down". Will that be a plus?

Here is an example that I ask my student to integrate "leg skill" into Taiji form.

I agreed that your addition is a good variation to the root form. However, IMO, it should be taught as a variation but NOT changing the root which should be retained as is. There is a good reason for this. If you teach this as THE Form, you eliminate other possible variations, AND eliminate the follow-up moves that are contained in the form. So, additional changes will be required. There is a domino effect. Allow me to explain using this form as a hypothetical:

Let's say the hand push was designed to create distance to allow for a long-range punch follow-up. If you CHANGE the form by using the push as part of a takedown, the original distance-creating application will be lost. Now let's look at the next move in the form: If the next move in the original form after the push is a punch, it will no longer work! The opponent is now on the ground! The next move must now be changed to a stomp or a kneel and/or lock. This puts the whole form's sequence out of whack.

As you can see, one change can make things very messy. This is why I am, as a rule, against changing traditional forms. But this does NOT mean that forms must be static. Okinawan forms (and perhaps Chinese?) were designed as a template, to be flexible and adaptable and allow for variations, but always going back to the original root form afterwards. After the push, we can thus have the options of a long-distance follow-up strike, OR a leg-hook takedown, OR a step back to reset, etc. These options exist as variations to the original root form, not as the form itself.

There is an important distinction between having a (temporary) variation in the form as opposed to (permanently) changing the form itself.
 
If the next move in the original form after the push is a punch, it will no longer work!
I have never believed that one can use a push to set up punch.

If you push your opponent too far, you have to move that distance again in order to punch/kick him.

Assume you push your opponent 3 inch away from you to make him off balance, you then throw a punch or kick to knock him down. Since your opponent's body is moving away from you, some of your punch/kick force will be cancelled out

A - B < A.

Why do you want to do that for?

Do you want head on collision, or do you want rear end collision? You can't have both.

Allow me to quote someone's comment on "push" here.
-------------------------------------------------------------
Well, it doesn't increase the effect. Quite the opposite. If you want to make maximum damage with a punch or kick, you either want the opponent to remain on spot and be still or moving towards you.

Also, unbalancing does not equal push. Unbalancing/unroot is what you do as a set up for an effortless push, throw, pull, take down, qinna. But it's not what you want to do if you want to punch or kick.

My late Chinese teacher didn't like "pushing", he would unbalance and/or compromise people's structure, putting them down on the ground where he could reach them with a strike, or he would unbalance them so they moved towards him and punch them.
 
I have never believed that one can use a push to set up punch.

If you push your opponent too far, you have to move that distance again in order to punch/kick him.

Assume you push your opponent 3 inch away from you to make him off balance, you then throw a punch or kick to knock him down. Since your opponent's body is moving away from you, some of your punch/kick force will be cancelled out

A - B < A.

Why do you want to do that for?

Do you want head on collision, or do you want rear end collision? You can't have both.

Allow me to quote someone's comment on "push" here.
-------------------------------------------------------------
Well, it doesn't increase the effect. Quite the opposite. If you want to make maximum damage with a punch or kick, you either want the opponent to remain on spot and be still or moving towards you.

Also, unbalancing does not equal push. Unbalancing/unroot is what you do as a set up for an effortless push, throw, pull, take down, qinna. But it's not what you want to do if you want to punch or kick.

My late Chinese teacher didn't like "pushing", he would unbalance and/or compromise people's structure, putting them down on the ground where he could reach them with a strike, or he would unbalance them so they moved towards him and punch them.
Not really my point at all. Since you mentioned the word "push" I just used that as a hypothetical example in a hypothetical form to illustrate the actual topic, changing forms. Pushing can be explored elsewhere but I'm too tired now to address it.
 
Will your changes alter the meaning of the form or render the next moves less effective?
You answer it with this:
The other question is, "What is/will be the purpose of the form?" If the blocks are just blocks and punches just punches with no second level applications (as in Okinawan forms) and the main function of the form is to just practice the basics, develop biomechanics and form, changing the moves around probably won't destroy the form's integrity.

You change the form to make it more effective.
That was my point.
If you teach this as THE Form, you eliminate other possible variations,
Actually, it's the opposite. The Taegeuks are THE form. There is no variation of them. Any differences from the way they're taught by Kukkiwon aren't variations, but incorrections.

Under what I'm proposing, the variations are infinite.

AND eliminate the follow-up moves that are contained in the form.
There are very few cases in the TKD forms in which this is a factor. And when it is, I will most likely keep the integrity of the combination, or at the very least keep the spirit of it.
 
You answer it with this:



That was my point.

Actually, it's the opposite. The Taegeuks are THE form. There is no variation of them. Any differences from the way they're taught by Kukkiwon aren't variations, but incorrections.

Under what I'm proposing, the variations are infinite.


There are very few cases in the TKD forms in which this is a factor. And when it is, I will most likely keep the integrity of the combination, or at the very least keep the spirit of it.
Perhaps I'm not fully understanding your proposal. Is it to change/add some of the moves in the Taegeuks incorporating your ideas, in essence re-inventing (at least in part) the forms and passing these new versions on to your students, or keep and teach the Taegeuks as they are (per the Kukkiwon organization) and just explore variations (incorrections") within your school?

If it's the first one, I may/may not be in favor, certainly the Kukkiwon won't be. If it's the second one, I'm in favor of it, though the Kukkiwon may not be if they learn of it. (I'm guessing they're pretty rigid, but I may be wrong.) You can certainly quit the organization and go your own way, doing whatever you want if you have the confidence in your knowledge and full understanding of the forms and ability to go off on your own.

Personally, I don't see the need to "improve" my style's forms. They are good as they are and most masters would encourage exploring variations and going off on tangents - that is what combat often requires. No need to change the forms as taught since they allow options as needed. I think the Okinawans are less rigid than the Japanese and Koreans culturally and don't require one to be "this way only" in practice, as long as the root form is maintained in the curriculum and passed on as the master template.

While expressing my opinions, I'm not trying to convince you of anything. The nature of our styles and forms are quite different. So, my perspectives and comments may not be in synch with your TKD reality. I'm merely exploring some possible issues that may pop up in changing a form as I discussed in this and earlier posts.
 
Perhaps I'm not fully understanding your proposal. Is it to change/add some of the moves in the Taegeuks incorporating your ideas, in essence re-inventing (at least in part) the forms and passing these new versions on to your students, or keep and teach the Taegeuks as they are (per the Kukkiwon organization) and just explore variations (incorrections") within your school?

If it's the first one, I may/may not be in favor, certainly the Kukkiwon won't be. If it's the second one, I'm in favor of it, though the Kukkiwon may not be if they learn of it. (I'm guessing they're pretty rigid, but I may be wrong.) You can certainly quit the organization and go your own way, doing whatever you want if you have the confidence in your knowledge and full understanding of the forms and ability to go off on your own.

Personally, I don't see the need to "improve" my style's forms. They are good as they are and most masters would encourage exploring variations and going off on tangents - that is what combat often requires. No need to change the forms as taught since they allow options as needed. I think the Okinawans are less rigid than the Japanese and Koreans culturally and don't require one to be "this way only" in practice, as long as the root form is maintained in the curriculum and passed on as the master template.

While expressing my opinions, I'm not trying to convince you of anything. The nature of our styles and forms are quite different. So, my perspectives and comments may not be in synch with your TKD reality. I'm merely exploring some possible issues that may pop up in changing a form as I discussed in this and earlier posts.
I was using the Taegeuks as an example, because pretty much everyone (in KKW) knows them, and everyone can find them online. I had already created my own forms that I intended to use in my school, which covered most of the techniques and combinations from the forms I had learned in my previous school.

So it's not really a question of Taegeuk 4 vs. May Form, but rather Skribs Form 4 vs. May Form. That's why in my OP I specifically excluded considerations such as KKW itself or other KKW schools.
 
One thing I was thinking lately - do forms need to be static? By "static"
By their nature - Yes. They should follow the official codification.

If you feel something is lacking and need to create something new, there is no reason not to. But once you do that it is not "THE Form"

Funakoshi created forms for Shotokan from earlier forms as did General Choi. I'll let someone else address to what extent KKW forms are linked to earlier forms.
 
I see what you mean, but IMO if the form fulfils a certain function and is beneficial for that, there's really no need to change it. I mean, we could add anything to anything and it could be seen as an improvement based on a particular viewpoint.

That being said, many (most probably) forms have changed over time, whether by it simply being passed down and individual differences caught on, or with actual intentional changes being made. I know in my style intentional changes to forms were made by the founder, but still retaining the essence and principles of the form.

I would say come up with your own new forms or just invent your own combinations/sequences that you build on over time. Or whatever I ain't no forms police! :p
 
I was using the Taegeuks as an example, because pretty much everyone (in KKW) knows them, and everyone can find them online. I had already created my own forms that I intended to use in my school, which covered most of the techniques and combinations from the forms I had learned in my previous school.

So it's not really a question of Taegeuk 4 vs. May Form, but rather Skribs Form 4 vs. May Form. That's why in my OP I specifically excluded considerations such as KKW itself or other KKW schools.
It all depends on what you want your forms to be and how deep you want them to go.

If they are just about recording what moves are in your style and or a list to practice to make sure you practice everything.... Then, as long as the new dynamic forms cover the same techniques.... then be as dynamic as you want.

If you want your forms to have deeper meaning.... then it will take more thought and more effort. If you want to keep the deeper meanings, the principles and ideas of Taegeuk 4.... then you first need to understand what those deeper things are. You then need to make sure that your changes, still talk about those same deeper things. If the change, does not discuss or transmit the same deeper ideas... it's not bad from a martial point of view, in fact it may be better.... It just will not hold the same body of information as the original form.

Remember, this does not have to be binary. You can teach and study the traditional forms and add your dynamic ones as well. It depends on what you want out of it.
 
One thing I was thinking lately - do forms need to be static? By "static" I mean how the Taegeuks have gone relatively unchanged over several decades. If you were to join a school in the 1990s and progress to blue belt, you will learn Taegeuk 4. If you are teaching at that school in the 2000s, 2010s, 2020s, and so on, then you will be teaching blue belts Taegeuk 4, and it will be the same Taegeuk 4 that you learned as a blue belt.

From the perspective of what the student will learn or benefit from the form (in other words: absent bureaucracy and testing requirements), is it needed to always be this way? As an example of what I mean, what if instead of doing Taegeuk 4 as written, I were to teach a form that is:
  • Moving left and right: Double knife block, spearhand (from Taegeuk 4)
  • Moving forward: Double knife block, spearhand, spinning hammerfist, punch (from Palgwe 4)
  • Moving right and left: Low double knife block, double out block, kick, double punch (from Palgwe 6)
  • Moving backward: Double knife block, spearhand, spinning backfist, arc strike (modification of the second set)
What would be the net loss to my students to teach this form instead of to teach the others that it came from? (Aside from not knowing Taegeuk 4 in competitions or when transferring to another school)?

One thing I'm thinking is that forms could be built dynamically. In the example above, let's start this form in May. First week, we cover the first 6 moves. Second week, we add in the spinning hammerfist and punch. Third week, we add in the next set. And fourth week we finish the form. Let's call this May Form.

Then in June, we start building June form. This form may be built from pieces of forms, or from combining techniques together in different ways. We refine the May form and build the June form. In July, we start building the July form. We practice the May form, refine the June form, and build the July form. In August, we drop the May form. Those techniques may get taught in the August form. Or those techniques may wait a bit before coming back into rotation.

In the schools I've been a part of, most people only retain what is needed for testing, and often that's not all of the forms. So I've seen it work in this way from the student's perspective. It also means anyone coming in from outside is on relatively equal footing as those who are learning the forms in-house, because everyone is learning something new. And students can remember the forms they really connect with and continue to practice on their own if they so choose.
My short answer is "if it ain't broke, don't fix it".

Try putting it terms of learning at college/university. Sometimes teachers try to change the way things are taught (think new math), but the end result must be the same. And all too often the 'way' things are changed in teaching method are clumsy and ineffective.

There are standards in almost every job or process. Maintaining and optimizing per the standard is the goal. In this way, your product (your teaching) has much greater value to the customer (student) in a larger scale. For example, if you made a set of "Skribs" drills (call them forms if you want) to teach basic movements and gross motor skills to Enhance learning the standard Poomsae model, that sounds great to me. But to make "Skirbs form set" has a Very limited value. Beyond the walls of your school, they would have little to no value.
 
I see what you mean, but IMO if the form fulfils a certain function and is beneficial for that, there's really no need to change it. I mean, we could add anything to anything and it could be seen as an improvement based on a particular viewpoint.
Recently, I've switched from TKD and HKD to an art that is much less rigid in training: BJJ. In BJJ, there is so much to learn that it can't really be broken down in the same way a TKD curriculum is. Instead, you learn some things by drilling the "move of the day", and you learn others just in sparring and getting feedback. The move of the day is often tied to a concept each week, which is tied to a larger concept each month.

In BJJ, this manifests as: in May, we're working on lasso guard. The first week we're working on sweeps, the second on passes, and the third on submissions from lasso guard. And during the first week, we might learn a sweep on Monday, refresh it on Wednesday and learn another, and then learn a few others on Friday.

The way that might work in TKD is that May is spin kick month, Week 1 is back kick month, and we do different drills focusing on the back kick each day of the week.

This is the idea behind doing dynamic forms instead of static forms. With static forms, it quickly gets into the territory where people just have too many forms. I heard it said by different higher-level folks at my old dojang (i.e. 2nd and 3rd dan) things like, "I can either learn new forms or I can improve the ones I already know, I can't do both," or, "I'm tired of learning forms, I want to learn application." This is kind of like the problem that BJJ beginners have, in that there's so much breadth to cover in the art.

This is to take the move-of-the-day approach and apply it to forms, in such a way that folks don't need to remember a dozen or more forms, but can still learn the techniques and concepts behind them.
My short answer is "if it ain't broke, don't fix it".

Try putting it terms of learning at college/university. Sometimes teachers try to change the way things are taught (think new math), but the end result must be the same. And all too often the 'way' things are changed in teaching method are clumsy and ineffective.

One of my fellow students at my old school had a saying, "Good is the enemy of great." The idea that if you're complacent with doing a good job, you'll never do a great job.

Going back to BJJ, there are a variety of ways that BJJ teaches. Some schools try and have a curriculum, where at each stripe of white belt you learn XYZ. Most I think follow the move-of-the-day approach I mentioned above. More recently, some schools have started training the ecological method, which is where instead of drilling, you just basically do a bunch of games designed to teach a certain concept (i.e. top person can't use their hands and has to maintain pressure, which teaches how to manage your weight and balance).

I personally prefer a hybrid of the "traditional" move-of-the-day style and the "modern" ecological approach. I feel some drills on each side is better than going all-in on one of the methods. If BJJ guys had simply gone, "eh, move-of-the-day is good enough", we never would have gotten the ecological training.

Similarly, I can look at the Taegeuks, or I can look at the forms I've created and say, "eh, they're good enough." But then I'm teaching something that's just "good enough", and can I really take pride in that?
 
If the Taegeuks have gone unchanged for several decades, and during that time a number of (supreme?) grand masters have come and gone without changing them, is there a functional reason why they didn't? One must assume they had a good understanding of their art. Maybe better than you? Will your changes alter the meaning of the form or render the next moves less effective? I'm just throwing out some things to consider - I have no idea of your forms' details.
I can't answer the rest, since I don't have enough knowledge of TKD forms to weigh in. But there is a very good reason heads of an organization, especially one as large as the kukkiwon, wouldn't make changes to the form. Standardization. If I make large changes to forms a, b, and c, I can rename them forms d, e, and f, and tell people that these are the new forms/changes, and slowly through master classes get a large portion teaching this new way. Not all of them (which is seen when they've tried exactly this in the past), but a decent number.

The issue is, if I take form D, and now make a tweak to it, I then have to go through all the same effort of getting it down to everyone, and there's going to be more people that don't teach the new way (or new students who it's not as obvious there's a change), but still call it the same form. Give it 20-30 years of little tweaks being made, some people taking this tweak, but not that one, some people ignoring all of them, some accepting everything immediately, but then losing contact for a couple years, etc. and all of a sudden you've got 20 variations of the same form being taught by licensed(?) kukkiwon schools, and calling it the same thing. For an art that wants everything to be standard, and students to be able to go to schools 1-999 and train or teach at any without any adjustments, that's a nightmare.
 
I can't answer the rest, since I don't have enough knowledge of TKD forms to weigh in. But there is a very good reason heads of an organization, especially one as large as the kukkiwon, wouldn't make changes to the form. Standardization. If I make large changes to forms a, b, and c, I can rename them forms d, e, and f, and tell people that these are the new forms/changes, and slowly through master classes get a large portion teaching this new way. Not all of them (which is seen when they've tried exactly this in the past), but a decent number.

The issue is, if I take form D, and now make a tweak to it, I then have to go through all the same effort of getting it down to everyone, and there's going to be more people that don't teach the new way (or new students who it's not as obvious there's a change), but still call it the same form. Give it 20-30 years of little tweaks being made, some people taking this tweak, but not that one, some people ignoring all of them, some accepting everything immediately, but then losing contact for a couple years, etc. and all of a sudden you've got 20 variations of the same form being taught by licensed(?) kukkiwon schools, and calling it the same thing. For an art that wants everything to be standard, and students to be able to go to schools 1-999 and train or teach at any without any adjustments, that's a nightmare.
I think this is the case with the Palgwe forms, especially Palgwe 1. Including the way we did it at our school, I've seen around a half dozen different versions of this form that are all really close to the same.
  1. Down block (usually front stance)
  2. Inside block (sometimes front stance, sometimes back stance; also sometimes this is an outside block)
  3. Repeat #1
  4. Repeat #2
  5. Down block (sometimes front stance, sometimes back stance)
  6. Inside block (sometimes front stance, sometimes back stance; also sometimes this is an outside block)
  7. Same as #6
  8. Punch and kiyhap (always front stance)
  9. Double knife-hand block (always back stance)
  10. Inside block (sometimes front stance, sometimes back stance; also sometimes this is an outside block)
  11. Repeat #9
  12. Repeat #10
  13. Down block (sometimes front stance, sometimes back stance)
  14. Chop (sometimes front stance, sometimes back stance; also sometimes this is a block)
  15. Same as #14
  16. Punch and kiyhap (always front stance)
  17. Repeat #1 (sometimes repeat #9)
  18. Repeat #2 (sometimes repeat #10)
  19. Repeat #3 (sometimes repeat #11)
  20. Repeat #4 (sometimes repeat #12)
 
and all of a sudden you've got 20 variations of the same form being taught
This is a situation well known in my style. Master Shimabuku made slight changes in his system throughout the 1950's and 60's. As his art was spread in the US by returning Marines, the forms they taught would vary depending on when they served in Okinawa: Kick vs no kick, knife hand block vs strike, mid-block vs high, etc.

While most all these variants were minor and didn't change the kata in any meaningful way, there was now no "one way" to do them. The "correct" way was the way one's sensei learned it. I don't think Shimabuku made these changes because he necessarily thought they were "better", but because they better represented the concepts he wanted to illustrate in that particular form. Unfortunately, there was no cental governing body to communicate and ensure such changes were adopted by the many instructors across the land.

Confusing? Not to me.

Some instructors in my style may hold that their way of doing the kata is the correct way (and in a sense they're right). But they're all the right way. I see them as simply minor variants of the root. Personally, I allow any of them to be done, as I've likely done them myself at some point during my time in the art. It should go without saying that the changes I'm talking about are ones only made by the senior masters. I'm comfortable with any way my sensei wishes me to do it (as there must be some consistency in the dojo) though I may have a different personal preference.
 
This is a situation well known in my style. Master Shimabuku made slight changes in his system throughout the 1950's and 60's. As his art was spread in the US by returning Marines, the forms they taught would vary depending on when they served in Okinawa: Kick vs no kick, knife hand block vs strike, mid-block vs high, etc.

While most all these variants were minor and didn't change the kata in any meaningful way, there was now no "one way" to do them. The "correct" way was the way one's sensei learned it. I don't think Shimabuku made these changes because he necessarily thought they were "better", but because they better represented the concepts he wanted to illustrate in that particular form. Unfortunately, there was no cental governing body to communicate and ensure such changes were adopted by the many instructors across the land.

Confusing? Not to me.

Some instructors in my style may hold that their way of doing the kata is the correct way (and in a sense they're right). But they're all the right way. I see them as simply minor variants of the root. Personally, I allow any of them to be done, as I've likely done them myself at some point during my time in the art. It should go without saying that the changes I'm talking about are ones only made by the senior masters. I'm comfortable with any way my sensei wishes me to do it (as there must be some consistency in the dojo) though I may have a different personal preference.
For you, that's fine. For some, likely including the leaders of an organization that is very set on trying to standardize, that's not.
 
For you, that's fine. For some, likely including the leaders of an organization that is very set on trying to standardize, that's not.
Standardization is not a bad thing - as long as it's recognized that forms must have some flexibility in them in actual application, otherwise the self-defense combat value of learning the form is lost and it becomes merely exercise and practicing basics, although some may say this is OK. Some students may be wanting only this.
 

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