Limited Emphasis on Forms/Poomse

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DArnold

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I'd like to see that statement substantiated, DA. So far you've just offered your own personal authority as validation. But your statement is considerably broader: `X not an accepted definition' is usually taken to imply that X is not accepted in general.

We seem to be at cross-purposes here. I am assuming that Mr. Anslow is correct on the performance of the tuls (if not, a correction would be most welcome!), so what is at issue is the question of bunkai. The question is not what Gen. Choi's intentions were in creating the forms, or what he himself intended as the bunkai. The question is, what self-defense applications are recoverable from the bunkai. If you start at the beginning of this thread, what you will notice is the question of whether hyungs are a necessary or at least significant part of TKD, and if so, how. The arguments that have been made involve the assertion that hyungs are very important because they encode practical applications. If a certain sequence in the ITF tuls turns out to have realistic street-applicable defense applications, then those applications are both valid per se and also constitute evidence that forms do constitute an important component of a TKD curriculum. It is completely irrelevant whether the interpretation was one that Gen. Choi envisaged or not. Mr. Anslow's interpretations might well be superior to those that Gen. Choi, envisaged, for example—he, like many of the other `bunkai-jutsu' investigators, subjects his interpretation to demanding `live' testing against noncompliant opponents—and so, if his interpretations are robust, then with respect to the point at issue, their resemblance to what Gen. Choi himself intended is, as I say, irrelevant

What you are saying here holds for all bunkai interpretation, does it not? In the old Okinawan curriculum, such as Fukakoshi and Motobu and the other first-generation Okinawan expatriates experienced in their training, a student was taught a limited number of kata and was expected to spend years investigating them for practical use. They were not spoonfed interpretations by the instructor; part of their training was specifically in making sense of kata. There is a terms for the goal of that investigation—kaisai no genri—the general method of deciphering kata applications, which students were rarely instructed in; they were expected to spend years learning that method for themselves. So Mr. Anslow is doing nothing different from what the Okinawan pioneers did themselves to create and propagate the systems that became the Shotokan roots of the Kwan systems the founders brought from Japan.

And there was no guarantee that a karateka would come up with the best interpretation possible; as Patrick McCarthy has noted, Motobu was convinced that Fukashima's were inferior, for example, and as almost certainly the far better practical self-defense expert of the two, he might well have been right. In which case, the kind of bunkai that Gen. Choi learned when he studied under GF in the 1930s would have been suboptimal as well. Since by his own account Shotokan karate was essential to the formation of TKD (as stated in an interview in Combat magazine in the 1970s; you can find the documentation in Mr. Anslow's book), it seems likely that by his own account, his training training in Shotokan, making up the largest portion of his MA training, if not its entirety, would have become implicated in his own kata designs. If Mr. Anslow can find better ones than Gen. Choi did, then those applications are to be credited to the Ch'ang Hon tuls just as much as anything the General intended, and actually, more so. We'll just have to look at whether his bunkai meet the kind of criteria for street effectiveness that people like Bill Burgar, Kane & Wilder, and Sutrisno & MacYoung, in books on form interpretation and street defense, observe as necessary conditions on application. Saying that `Gen. Choi didn't intend this' is a biographical fact about the General that has nothing to do with whether the tech in question is more or less useful.

I can't make much sense of this passage, I'm afraid.

If you are saying that TKD is exactly what the content of General Choi's mind was on any given point, then there really is nothing more to discuss, I'm afraid. And there is plenty of reason, given by the MAists who have written in detail about realistic interpretation for forms, to regard use of a low block to stop an attack as, practically speaking, a very low-value use of that move. The kind of interpretation Mr. Anslow gives, where a low forearm`block' is in fact a strike to an assailant's forcibly lowered, exposed throat, is in line with a great deal of work on effective self-defense. Again, whether or not that's what Gen. Choi intended, or even imagined, is irrelevant to the thread topic, because if the tech is a consistent intepretation of the form and is effective in combat, the General's possible attitude with respect to it is completely beside the point.



I don't see just what this comment bears on, DA.

And one could say the same thing wrt to the Encyclopædia. In which case, Gen. Choi's intentions have no priviledged standing so far as tul application goes. And in that case, Mr. Anslow has done the only thing possible: sought to explain why what he is proposing is a valid set of interpretations for each tul subsequence. So far, he's produced a massive, encyclopædic reference to this end, one which you yourself say you've only read parts of. And your response to his work, so far as I can see, are a few paragraphs offering not one criticism, well-supported or otherwise, of the effectiveness of his applications—which, again, is the issue that is relevant to the thread topic of whether leaving out or limiting poomsae training is necessarily a deficiency of a TKD dojang.

Yes, we diverge on many paths.
You seem to be enamored with written material as I have found them only to be reference material. Many times fraught with errors and opinions.
Do I use my opinions, yes, to support items.
But never to tout them as gospel facts.

Any book must also be discerned for its value:

A man inventing an art and explaining it
A mans subjectional interpitations of anothers work
A man selling information to make money?

Your comparison of Mr. Anslows book and the generals are fraught with errors as the TKD encyclopedia was devised by the man who invented TKD with the purpose of explaining the purpose. Where Mr. Anslows is subjection and extrapolation for an unsupported viewpoint.

Do I say Mr. Anslows is not valid, NO. However it is mearly one mans supposition/interpetation and extrapolation, which in some instances that I've seen are just that, an extrapolation with no basis or foundation of TKD.

One built a car. The other designed some tires like many before him. Jhoon Rhe, Choy... But to say their tires are definitive of the car is ludicrious.

Now to state that the only purpose of patterns is to produce "practical application" then that is where I think we differ also as it appears from your discussion that you look at practical as only things you can fight with, "Self Defense".

Being a Martial Artist and not a Fighter then the "Do" changes what you do, how you practice, and what you view as practical. Just as the Samurai saw value in every aspect of their life, not just Kenjitsu, but Kendo.

I would dare say that these pragmatists would be laughed at by the Samurai. For how practical are the "tea ceremoney", Or the teachings of the Hwa Rang, or the teachins of Loa Tsu...

Mearly a waste of time when you could be practicing "Practical Techniques with Practical applications"

Yeah, we diverge :uhyeah:
 

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Yes, we diverge on many paths.
You seem to be enamored with written material as I have found them only to be reference material. Many times fraught with errors and opinions.

Since much information is conveyed by written material, I do consult it. I'm not sure why you choose the verb `enamored'. I accept information in any form I can find where it seems to be reliable, well-supported and relevant. I am aware of the very high regard with which you hold Gen. Choi's writings, but rather than saying you were `enamored' of them, I'd prefer putting it this way: you accept what the General is saying them and find it valuable.


Do I use my opinions, yes, to support items.
But never to tout them as gospel facts.

This is, of course, the status of an opinion: a view. Facts are different kinds of things entirely. An opinion might accord with the facts, or not. I happen to have a certain opinion of your discussion of Mr. Anslow's book, and I've presented some reasons why that opinion is supported in my previous post. I'm not sure where `touting' comes in. I've presented an opinion and supported it with appeal to evidence that others can assess for themselves, without asking them to accept my personal authority for any of it. So I'm not sure what the point of your comment here is.

Any book must also be discerned for its value:

A man inventing an art and explaining it
A mans subjectional interpitations of anothers work
A man selling information to make money?

I won't get into the question of whether Gen. Choi invented TKD or not; it really is irrelevant to the point. Mr. Anslow's interpetation of TKD is no more subjective than Gen. Choi's is, given that TKD is not defined as General Choi's personal interpretation of it. And `a man selling information to make money'.... would you care to expand on this point, DA? I'd rather not draw any conclusions from this comment without a little more information.

Your comparison of Mr. Anslows book and the generals are fraught with errors as the TKD encyclopedia was devised by the man who invented TKD with the purpose of explaining the purpose. Where Mr. Anslows is subjection and extrapolation for an unsupported viewpoint.

General Choi presented certain movement sequences, called tuls, which he believed should be applied in a certain way. Mr. Anslow is looking at those same sequences and saying that there are better applications. There is nothing pre-given, or `factual', about the superiority of the General's interpretations—I believe I addressed this point in my last post, and there is widespread agreement amongst MA historians that the Kwan founders were basically exposed to a rather diluted interpretation of the kata applications simply because Funakoshi himself was was not fully up to speed on the bunkai for those katas. Therefore, if Mr. Anslow can do better at tul interpretation than Gen. Choi, his interpretations have superior validity. Let me use an analogy, rough but I think serviceable: the chap who devised the rules of chess probably was a reasonable player, all those millenia ago. I suspect that Gary Kasparov would cut him to ribbons before the opening was over.

Do I say Mr. Anslows is not valid, NO. However it is mearly one mans supposition/interpetation and extrapolation, which in some instances that I've seen are just that, an extrapolation with no basis or foundation of TKD.

Again, I get the sense that you are equating TKD with whatever it was that Gen. Choi was thinking. This is, however, a private usage. Plenty of people do a version of TKD which is significantly different from what General Choi taught—the majority, I'd say, though the numbers aren't important. What is important is that Mr. Anslow is presenting interpretations of ITF TKD hyungs—am I correct? So in that case, his `extrapolation' does have a very solid basis in TKD! What you're saying is actually a bit different—though you're not, I'm afraid, articulating it explicitly: you're saying—again—that `TKD' entails only the interpretation of TKD that Gen. Choi intended. I'm saying—again—that if you don't accept the equation of Gen. Choi's world-view on KMA with TKD (as most of the TKD world does not), then what he is presenting is a set of applications of TKD forms which are indeed bunkai for TKD forms, and whose validity as SD scenarios depends completely on their combat applicability.

One built a car. The other designed some tires like many before him. Jhoon Rhe, Choy... But to say their tires are definitive of the car is ludicrious.

I'm not going to even try to figure out how this analogy is relevant to the current discussion, DA.

Now to state that the only purpose of patterns is to produce "practical application" then that is where I think we differ also as it appears from your discussion that you look at practical as only things you can fight with, "Self Defense".

Being a Martial Artist and not a Fighter then the "Do" changes what you do, how you practice, and what you view as practical. Just as the Samurai saw value in every aspect of their life, not just Kenjitsu, but Kendo.

I take TKD, and MAs, in general, to be a jutsu. And I've no clue what you're thinking of when you talk about the samurai, but for them, swordsmanship was a jutsu in every sense of the word, their lived depended on it, and they trained for survival.

I would dare say that these pragmatists would be laughed at by the Samurai. For how practical are the "tea ceremoney", Or the teachings of the Hwa Rang, or the teachins of Loa Tsu...



Mearly a waste of time when you could be practicing "Practical Techniques with Practical applications"

Yeah, we diverge :uhyeah:

What you're missing, again, DA, is the relevance of the SD application aspect to the thread. Let me urge you, again, to go back to the beginning of the thread and read it carefully. What you will see at the outset, and as the thread develops, is that there is a suggestion that TKD can be taught as a self-defense system with minimal reliance on forms. So the discussion centers on forms as repositories of practical self-defense tactics, guided by a coherent strategy. That is why the discussion involves self-defense: because of the premises of the OP and the OPer's arguments. Since it's the self-defense utility of including forms in the curriculum which is at issue, I don't understand why you think it's relevant to bring in issues about Do, or Martial Artistry or the variety of other topics you allude to. How do they bear on the thread topic—the necessity, or otherwise, of inclusion of hyung in the TKD curriculum?
 

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Since much information is conveyed by written material, I do consult it. I'm not sure why you choose the verb `enamored'. I accept information in any form I can find where it seems to be reliable, well-supported and relevant. I am aware of the very high regard with which you hold Gen. Choi's writings, but rather than saying you were `enamored' of them, I'd prefer putting it this way: you accept what the General is saying them and find it valuable.

This is, of course, the status of an opinion: a view. Facts are different kinds of things entirely. An opinion might accord with the facts, or not. I happen to have a certain opinion of your discussion of Mr. Anslow's book, and I've presented some reasons why that opinion is supported in my previous post. I'm not sure where `touting' comes in. I've presented an opinion and supported it with appeal to evidence that others can assess for themselves, without asking them to accept my personal authority for any of it. So I'm not sure what the point of your comment here is.

Any book must also be discerned for its value:

I won't get into the question of whether Gen. Choi invented TKD or not; it really is irrelevant to the point. Mr. Anslow's interpetation of TKD is no more subjective than Gen. Choi's is, given that TKD is not defined as General Choi's personal interpretation of it. And `a man selling information to make money'.... would you care to expand on this point, DA? I'd rather not draw any conclusions from this comment without a little more information.

General Choi presented certain movement sequences, called tuls, which he believed should be applied in a certain way. Mr. Anslow is looking at those same sequences and saying that there are better applications. There is nothing pre-given, or `factual', about the superiority of the General's interpretations—I believe I addressed this point in my last post, and there is widespread agreement amongst MA historians that the Kwan founders were basically exposed to a rather diluted interpretation of the kata applications simply because Funakoshi himself was was not fully up to speed on the bunkai for those katas. Therefore, if Mr. Anslow can do better at tul interpretation than Gen. Choi, his interpretations have superior validity. Let me use an analogy, rough but I think serviceable: the chap who devised the rules of chess probably was a reasonable player, all those millenia ago. I suspect that Gary Kasparov would cut him to ribbons before the opening was over.

Again, I get the sense that you are equating TKD with whatever it was that Gen. Choi was thinking. This is, however, a private usage. Plenty of people do a version of TKD which is significantly different from what General Choi taught—the majority, I'd say, though the numbers aren't important. What is important is that Mr. Anslow is presenting interpretations of ITF TKD hyungs—am I correct? So in that case, his `extrapolation' does have a very solid basis in TKD! What you're saying is actually a bit different—though you're not, I'm afraid, articulating it explicitly: you're saying—again—that `TKD' entails only the interpretation of TKD that Gen. Choi intended. I'm saying—again—that if you don't accept the equation of Gen. Choi's world-view on KMA with TKD (as most of the TKD world does not), then what he is presenting is a set of applications of TKD forms which are indeed bunkai for TKD forms, and whose validity as SD scenarios depends completely on their combat applicability.

I'm not going to even try to figure out how this analogy is relevant to the current discussion, DA.

What you're missing, again, DA, is the relevance of the SD application aspect to the thread. Let me urge you, again, to go back to the beginning of the thread and read it carefully. What you will see at the outset, and as the thread develops, is that there is a suggestion that TKD can be taught as a self-defense system with minimal reliance on forms. So the discussion centers on forms as repositories of practical self-defense tactics, guided by a coherent strategy. That is why the discussion involves self-defense: because of the premises of the OP and the OPer's arguments. Since it's the self-defense utility of including forms in the curriculum which is at issue, I don't understand why you think it's relevant to bring in issues about Do, or Martial Artistry or the variety of other topics you allude to. How do they bear on the thread topic—the necessity, or otherwise, of inclusion of hyung in the TKD curriculum?

Nope, didn't miss it.
Trying to discern if a move is a silver bullet, or a short cut, misses the whole point of an MA/DO. I'll try to keep the analogys simpler.
One without the other is simply not TKD.

I guess I should go back and ask the question do you want to be a MA or a fighter. Big difference.

And by picking and chooseing moves you may find moves that you like more, based on whatever criteria you use. However, by doing so you miss the entire purpose of an art. Why not just compare punching, or kicking? Why, because then it is not an art and it is a waste of time unless you take it to the next step and develope your own art.

Without this, this goes back to the juvinile aspect of "My style is better than yours"
Look at all those who don't understand high section kicking.
They have limited themselves and discarded for not only them, but their students, what they don't understand.
I pity the one student it may have helped, if these people who want to pick and choose, hod only the fortitude to continue.

You can teach any part you want and make up anything you want, however, then it is not TKD.

This is where we diverged when you told students to compare with Mr. Anslows book, as representing TKD. Call me a Cramudgeon or whatever.

However, I wouldn't call dentistry without painkillers dentistry.
I wouldn't call surgery without anestheseology medicine.

I don't call TKD without the forms TKD.
I don't call Mr. Anslows extrapolations TKD.
Therefore comparing them to whatever, in no way, shows a representation of TKD to anything other than some moves Mr. Anslow put down in a book.

It's just some made up stuff that you want to teach.
So is it applicable base upon the theory you propose behind the system.
Who knows.
However, the next step for Mr. Anslow is much bigger.
To develop his own style based on his research, but please, don't call it TKD. There are enough imitators out there.
 

exile

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And by picking and chooseing moves you may find moves that you like more, based on whatever criteria you use. However, by doing so you miss the entire purpose of an art. Why not just compare punching, or kicking? Why, because then it is not an art and it is a waste of time unless you take it to the next step and develope your own art.

You can teach any part you want and make up anything you want, however, then it is not TKD.

This is where we diverged when you told students to compare with Mr. Anslows book, as representing TKD.

I don't call TKD without the forms TKD.
I don't call Mr. Anslows extrapolations TKD.
Therefore comparing them to whatever, in no way, shows a representation of TKD to anything other than some moves Mr. Anslow put down in a book.

It's just some made up stuff that you want to teach.
So is it applicable base upon the theory you propose behind the system.
Who knows.
However, the next step for Mr. Anslow is much bigger.
To develop his own style based on his research, but please, don't call it TKD. There are enough imitators out there.

For readers of this thread who might be troubled by the quoted material, let me offer you reassurance! :)

Stuart Anslow is an ITF 4th Dan in TKD, who is the chief instructor of the Rayner's Lane TKD dojang in Middlesex, UK. His book, the first in a three volume set, displays 9 of the Ch'ang Hon tuls—Saju Jirugi, Saju Makgi, Chon-Ji, Dan-Gun, Do-San, Won-Hyo, Yul-Gok, Joong-Gun and Toi-Gye—breaks them up into subsequences which take the defender from the first response to the initial attack to the incapacitation of the attacker and the end of the fight, displaying the sequence of movements for each of these tuls and then showing the decoding of the movements into combat-effective moves. Basic bunkai are given, along with more advanced variants and backup techs, all based on the hyungs movements. The applications are illustrated with clear photographs of the moves, with multiple angles shown where necessary.

One of the forewords to this book is written by Gen. Yun Wook Yi, a TKD instructor and military officer in the ROK army in the Korean War era and a military TKD instructor under Gen. Choi. His own instructors were all first-generation TKD Dans under General Choi, including the legendary Gm. Hee Il Cho, one of the highest-ranked and most celebrated TKD exponents in North America. Of Mr. Anslow's book, Gm. Yi comments that

Many techniques and applications in Ch'ang Hon tuls faded away as Taekwon-do transitioned from a military martial art into a civilian martial art. The only ones who knew the actual applications were spread out among the first generation Taekwondo Grandmasters who were under General Choi.

This book is a compilation of Mr. Anslow's quest to find the lost techniques. The techniques and applications he has in this book are what Mr. Anslow's research found (along with his own studies), and sourced together what numerous 1st generation Korean Taekwon-do Grandmasters originally taught, but have since stopped teaching—the true applications. They are the `lost techniques' from the first generation Taekwondo Grandmasters. This book in essence brings back the `lost legacy' of Gen. Choi's Ch'ang Hon Taekwon-do'.

(my emphasis).

And there you have it, from a man who served under Gen. Choi, trained under some of his elite military instructors, including Hee Il Choi, and served as a top-ranking military officer and instructor. I think you can rest assured that what Mr. Anslow is teaching is indeed ITF TKD, and I again urge you to read his analyses of the optimal combat applications of the ITF hyungs he covers in his book, and then compare them with the kind of bunkai that distinguished karateka such as Iain Abernethy, Rick Clark, and Bill Burgar, who have worked for years on the experimental testing of combat applications for Shotokan kata using `live' testing—and decide for yourself just how `vast' the difference between the combat systems deducible from the hyungs on the one hand and the kata on the other are.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by stoneheart
To be honest though, anyone who has studied both the Chang Hon forms and the Shotokan Heian forms knows where General Choi got most of his inspiration from. The good general lifted many moves verbatim from the Heians. It's not unreasonable to use the karate bunkai to interpret the Chang Hon forms, the desire for TKD to come out of karate's shadow notwithstanding.

I realize kick2face's teacher and seniors have said high kicks were part of the ROK soldiers' repetoire in the Vietnam war. I, like Exile, have a different understanding, but it's not like I was there myself, so I ultimately am relying on what I have read and heard from others. There's a Black Belt magazine article within the last year where Hee Il Cho himself states the jumping and spinning kicks were added recently (certainly post-fifties) to TKD. I don't have the magazine anymore else I would quote it directly.


This is a fallacy, as I have studied both, and anyone who has can tell your your stament about them being the same is wrong. The moves may look the same but they are vastly different and it is a great dis-service to generalize about Shotakan and TKD this way.
As for anything you can gleen from you statment that is true, it is that they were an insparation, nothing more


They are vastly different only because that is the interpretation you choose to take. I'm not a fan of "official, that's the way we do it because that's the way so-and-so intended" dogma. There's so many dangers fraught with assuming there's only one right way, particularly when it's regarding something that has grown far beyond one man or even a small group of men.

As you yourself have admitted, the moves in Shotokan and TKD hyung are very similar. I can very well see some TKD-centric bunkai existing and I would be interested in learning more about them, however I am unwilling to discard all of the obvious influences and knowledge that can gleaned from karate, the FATHER of TKD.

After all, not everyone doing TKD is doing only the ITF or WTF versions. Some prominent GMs even predate the ITF and WTF and their teachings reflect that, whatever set of forms they choose to use this week. It's a dangerous assumption to make that your TKD is the only way.
 

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They are vastly different only because that is the interpretation you choose to take. I'm not a fan of "official, that's the way we do it because that's the way so-and-so intended" dogma. There's so many dangers fraught with assuming there's only one right way, particularly when it's regarding something that has grown far beyond one man or even a small group of men.

As you yourself have admitted, the moves in Shotokan and TKD hyung are very similar. I can very well see some TKD-centric bunkai existing and I would be interested in learning more about them, however I am unwilling to discard all of the obvious influences and knowledge that can gleaned from karate, the FATHER of TKD.

After all, not everyone doing TKD is doing only the ITF or WTF versions. Some prominent GMs even predate the ITF and WTF and their teachings reflect that, whatever set of forms they choose to use this week. It's a dangerous assumption to make that your TKD is the only way.

I did not say that there was only one way of doing things.

I am not one to try and change histroy, yes by studying TKD and Shotakan you can see where the General got some of his inspiration.

Here I may have misworded my stament. Many of the moves in these two styles may look the same but if you study them both, the movements, theory, and purpose has drastically changed. What the General knew of Shotakan has since changed also. So making this comparison now, and as time goes on, hold very little, if no meaning.

However, assumeing that since Karate uses a side kick and TKD uses a side kick you can call these the same is a far streatch.

And yes, there are many out there doing older versions of TKD but this is akin to those who would practice dentistry but dont want to use pain killers. Is that dentistry?
Yeah, I guess.

And there are those that have tweeked a few things, for various reasons.
But I would be more apt to go with Jaque Cousteau (the inventor of SCUBA Diving) and all his knowledge than someone imitating what he did.

This does not make them invalid, inaffective... It just means they did not have the fortitude to follow through and create their own style.

There are many similarities between styles, as like religion, I feel they are parallel lines. And parallel lines do meet at the horizon.

I also agree with you that I would not change what I have studied. However history does show you insights.

Surley, everyone starts somewhere, but claiming Karate as the father is about as insecure as you can get and holds about as much validity as anyone claiming they invented fire.

Most all martial arts have these absurdities where they try to trace their lineage back to the cave man, as if they could or anyone would belive them.

Mearly sales pitches.
 

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For readers of this thread who might be troubled by the quoted material, let me offer you reassurance! :)

Stuart Anslow is an ITF 4th Dan in TKD, who is the chief instructor of the Rayner's Lane TKD dojang in Middlesex, UK. His book, the first in a three volume set, displays 9 of the Ch'ang Hon tuls—Saju Jirugi, Saju Makgi, Chon-Ji, Dan-Gun, Do-San, Won-Hyo, Yul-Gok, Joong-Gun and Toi-Gye—breaks them up into subsequences which take the defender from the first response to the initial attack to the incapacitation of the attacker and the end of the fight, displaying the sequence of movements for each of these tuls and then showing the decoding of the movements into combat-effective moves. Basic bunkai are given, along with more advanced variants and backup techs, all based on the hyungs movements. The applications are illustrated with clear photographs of the moves, with multiple angles shown where necessary.

One of the forewords to this book is written by Gen. Yun Wook Yi, a TKD instructor and military officer in the ROK army in the Korean War era and a military TKD instructor under Gen. Choi. His own instructors were all first-generation TKD Dans under General Choi, including the legendary Gm. Hee Il Cho, one of the highest-ranked and most celebrated TKD exponents in North America. Of Mr. Anslow's book, Gm. Yi comments that


Many techniques and applications in Ch'ang Hon tuls faded away as Taekwon-do transitioned from a military martial art into a civilian martial art. The only ones who knew the actual applications were spread out among the first generation Taekwondo Grandmasters who were under General Choi.​


This book is a compilation of Mr. Anslow's quest to find the lost techniques. The techniques and applications he has in this book are what Mr. Anslow's research found (along with his own studies), and sourced together what numerous 1st generation Korean Taekwon-do Grandmasters originally taught, but have since stopped teaching—the true applications. They are the `lost techniques' from the first generation Taekwondo Grandmasters. This book in essence brings back the `lost legacy' of Gen. Choi's Ch'ang Hon Taekwon-do'.
(my emphasis).

And there you have it, from a man who served under Gen. Choi, trained under some of his elite military instructors, including Hee Il Choi, and served as a top-ranking military officer and instructor. I think you can rest assured that what Mr. Anslow is teaching is indeed ITF TKD, and I again urge you to read his analyses of the optimal combat applications of the ITF hyungs he covers in his book, and then compare them with the kind of bunkai that distinguished karateka such as Iain Abernethy, Rick Clark, and Bill Burgar, who have worked for years on the experimental testing of combat applications for Shotokan kata using `live' testing—and decide for yourself just how `vast' the difference between the combat systems deducible from the hyungs on the one hand and the kata on the other are.

Ok, so has Joon Rhe and other, have written great forwards and claim validity from the General.

I would also encourage people to read it, but not take it as any definative source, but one of many simialar reference books that have come out over the ages like Rhe's interpitation.

Many have learned from the General.
Many with the integrity and fortitude to Create their own style.
Park Jung Tae, Kong Young Il...

Many now come out of the woodwork since the generals death claiming knowledge. My only question is where were all these pioneers when the General was alive?

And many have leached off the name of TaeKwon-Do due to it's popularity. I make no inferences, only observations. Everyone must draw their own conclusions. However, these facts must be noted.

It would be easier to promote TKD vs Fred-Do

However, some questions are now arising!

I seem to remember Mr. Anslow stating that he was not ITF but independent. And looking at his site it shows that he is using the ITF name, uniforms, but not their certificates.

This smacks of someone selling themselves as ITF, for the money.

Our/my history is ITF also, however, upon leaving the ITF we changed our advertising to Ch'ang Hon as selling ourselves as ITF would not show good integrity.

And now after looking at his bio, I understand why a lot of his self-defense extrapolations smack of Judo.

Have any of the ITF's endorse his book as their standard.

Maybe Mr. Anslow could clear up these questions.

If I am wrong, I am wrong but the questions must be made public also!
 

exile

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My only question is where were all these pioneers when the General was alive?

Well, Mr. Yoon Wook Yi was in the RoK army. And Mr. Anslow was not yet born.


I seem to remember Mr. Anslow stating that he was not ITF but independent. And looking at his site it shows that he is using the ITF name, uniforms, but not their certificates.

This smacks of someone selling themselves as ITF, for the money.

What I stated in the original post is that Mr. Anslow's belt was in an ITF school, which reflects information I acquired while finding out about his work, and that he teaches an ITF curriculum. Mr. Anslow is completely upfront about both his training history and the affiliation of his school. As he himself tells us,

The style I teach is ITF Taekwon-do and although this is my base art many martial arts fascinate me, so I cross train in other styles every now and then, exchanging techniques and ideas with like minded martial artists. Apart from my style of Taekwon-do, I've trained a bit in Judo (at college), Shotokan karate with my training partner for over 4 years, Ju Jitsu, attending seminars & gaining certificates, and Kung Fu (in my school days), but Taekwon-do is the only art I've graded in, which doesn't really matter as its what lies behind the belt that counts. And its very easy once you been training for a while to implement other techniques & ideas into your own style from other arts & people.​

And this is what we learn about his school:

Rayners lane Taekwon-do Academy was started in April 1999. It is an independant school of Taekwon-do that adheres to the original I.T.F. syllabus of Taekwon-do. This syllabus has been expanded in order to develop students capabilities in all ranges of self defence, in order to make each student as capable as possible in all areas once they obtain their 1st degree black belts.

The academy teaches all the major aspects of Taekwon-do as taught in the large federations, patterns, sparring & destruction, but we also teach areas that are sadly neglected in some schools. These areas include pattern interpretation (patterns contain strikes, locks, throws & pressure point techniques), pattern application (teaching the correct methods of applying the techniques found within the patterns) & street smart self defence, although I see Taekwon-do as an art of self defence & dislike the fact that people refer to specific parts as self defence rather than Taekwon-do as a whole.


Very straightforward. And I don't see why he would make any more money `selling himself as an ITF school' than selling himself as an independent school. MA in the UK, as I understand it, is much less factional and sect-ridden than it seems to be in the US, and if the instructions is good, people will pay just as much for training in an independent school as an ITF or WTF school. He teaches the ITF syllabus because he likes it, having himself been trained in the ITF syllabus. Why does one need any more explanation than that? I am perplexed at the idea, which you've also mentioned previously with no actual evidence, that he is somehow `profiteering' from teaching the ITF syllabus. But the point is in any case not really relevant in any way to the nature of the thread OP; see below.

And now after looking at his bio, I understand why a lot of his self-defense extrapolations smack of Judo.

Since the kinds of pins, locks, throw-downs and other control moves his interpretations reflect were standard bunkai for the Okinawan predecessors of the Shotokan karate that the Kwan founders who jointly created TKD, and contain virtually none of the lifting throws and ground moves, I can't see any feed-in to what Anslow is doing, based on his four months of judo training before taking up TKD and a bit of cross training in the arts he mentioned, but I can see exactly the relation between his `extrapolatons'—I assume you mean the bunkai interpretations for the forms—and the Shotokan that Gen. Choi learned. Again, though, the historical sources of these bunkai are irrelvant; more below.

If I am wrong, I am wrong but the questions must be made public also!

Once again, the issue here is not ITF affiliation purity and other organizational political questions. For many martial artists, MA sectarianism is of no interest whatever, or doctrinal factionalism and the like. What is of interest is the combat effectiveness of their art, given the OP.

Which comes back, once more, to the same old points:

(i) the thread starts by positing that TKD poomsae are not particularly useful to self defense. If you check the OP, you'll see that that is exactly what Independent_TKD, the OPers, says. And he then questions whether one needs poomsae in the TKD curriculum at all.

(ii) Now we have a number of posts arguing that indeed the poomsae are very relevant to self-defense, that the premise of the original post is incorrect. So now the self-defense applicability of TKD forms comes into the discussion. Do you see how the issue now shifts to whether or not poomsae do indeed have combat effective interpretations? And therefore the question is, is there some evidence bearing on that question?

(iii) Now we switch to Mr. Anslow and his analyses of the bunkai, which he does in live, noncompliant testing situations similar to others in Abernethy's working group, to which he belongs. These interpretations are combat-oriented, and if they are indeed effective, and their content is trained realistically, then Mr. Anslow constitutes a living contradiction to the OP. And that is the only respect in which Mr. Anslow's work is relevant to this thread: as a contradiction to the OP's claims of combat irrelevance.

Maybe Mr. Anslow could clear up these questions.

I'm sure he could. But it should be clear from (i)-(iii) that given the logic of the thread's OP claims and the followup discussion, the answers will be completely beside the point so far as this thread is concerned. If there are effective bunkai for these forms that constitute the combat scenarios to be realistically trained, then the OP is wrong. And that's why Mr. Anslow's work is relevant to the thread.
 

stoneheart

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I did not say that there was only one way of doing things.

I am not one to try and change histroy, yes by studying TKD and Shotakan you can see where the General got some of his inspiration.

Here I may have misworded my stament. Many of the moves in these two styles may look the same but if you study them both, the movements, theory, and purpose has drastically changed. What the General knew of Shotakan has since changed also. So making this comparison now, and as time goes on, hold very little, if no meaning.

I understood your point perfectly well. What I am arguing is that karate bunkai is a very reasonable way to study TKD hyung, particularly so with the Chang Hon set General Choi is credited for inventing. Martial arts understanding does not flow from a vacuum. They are built from a lifetime of experiences and yes, a huge part of General Choi's understanding came from Japanese karate, Korean nationalism aside.

However, assumeing that since Karate uses a side kick and TKD uses a side kick you can call these the same is a far streatch.

And yes, there are many out there doing older versions of TKD but this is akin to those who would practice dentistry but dont want to use pain killers. Is that dentistry?
Yeah, I guess.

If you're saying that the older versions of TKD that are more obvious or honest about their link to karate are obsolete, I must disagree with you. Different from what you choose to practice, yes. Obsolete, no. In fact, I think being able to learn from the wide body of karate knowledge available is only an advantage.

And there are those that have tweeked a few things, for various reasons.
But I would be more apt to go with Jaque Cousteau (the inventor of SCUBA Diving) and all his knowledge than someone imitating what he did.

This does not make them invalid, inaffective... It just means they did not have the fortitude to follow through and create their own style.

Well. Not everyone regards General Choi as the final source of TKD knowledge. From where I stand, I owe as much if not more so to Hwang Kee and Tanken Toyama, two masters who PREDATE General Choi., two men whose teachers are part of what is called tae kwon do today.

If you specified in your posts that you are referring only to ITF TKD, I might be inclined to go with you, but you don't.

There are many similarities between styles, as like religion, I feel they are parallel lines. And parallel lines do meet at the horizon.

I also agree with you that I would not change what I have studied. However history does show you insights.

No disagreements here. I would say these assertions flow rather well with mine own.

Surley, everyone starts somewhere, but claiming Karate as the father is about as insecure as you can get and holds about as much validity as anyone claiming they invented fire.

Insecure? Please don't bring personal attacks into this. I'm absolutely capable of having a discussion about TKD and karate and bunkai without feeling insecure about it. As for the claim that karate is the father of TKD, it's true enough, and I stand by it.

Most all martial arts have these absurdities where they try to trace their lineage back to the cave man, as if they could or anyone would belive them.

Mearly sales pitches.

Well as I said knowledge does not just spring from a vacuum. In my opinion it's a shame to discard useful knowledge out of something as vacuous as simple nationalism.
 

Kacey

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This particular thread seems to have degenerated into a discussion of whether or not reference books should be used to teach application. Since the original topic of the thread was "How do you view schools that place limited emphasis on poomse?" I have started a new thread with my discussion on the use of reference books in MA training and instruction here.

To return to the original question, I view schools that place limited emphasis on poomsae to be artificially limiting their options, for reasons that I have already stated in detail within this thread about a similar topic.
 

StuartA

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Hi folks,

This thread was brought to my attention by someone and as it specifically questions my integrity I thought I should come here and clear a few things up:

I seem to remember Mr. Anslow stating that he was not ITF but independent. And looking at his site it shows that he is using the ITF name, uniforms, but not their certificates.
Yes, I am no longer with the ITF, but was with an ITF org up to 2nd degree. I do not claim to be with the ITF anymore and make that quite clear. I do however teach the ITF system I learnt, I am simply no longer a member of ITF "the organisation" (which is really what it is, though many refer to it as the style), hence I would not be paying for their certificates anymore either. I do not believe you have to be part of any organisation to teach what you were taught anyway. I still actively train with both ITF & Non-ITf Taekwon-do students.

The reason my students wear ITF uniforms is simple.
When I left the TKD organisation I was with. I still mixed and trained with many of them (and still do) and so did my students and I wanted a uniform that was similar and wouldnt stand out as vastly different, but also represent the art I study/teach - TKD. At that time in the UK you could either buy karate Gi's, WTF doboks or get funky coloured ones made up for lots of ££££, then a company advertised ITF uniforms.. these were similar to the ones we originally wore and exactly what I was looking for.

Yes they have the ITF badge and tree, but the designer of the badge (C K Choi I believe) has stated that the badge is for all taekwon-do.. not just the ITF groups, so I am free to use it.. same with the ITF tree I believe.. though they both came "built in" on the uniforms so I had no choice anyway. Still, I see it as a great way to pay homage to the style I study and teach as ITF is commonly (though incorrectly) refered to as the style and this is what I teach (though I refer to it as ch'ang hon TKD these days, now that the name is more widely know).



This smacks of someone selling themselves as ITF, for the money.
LOL.. thats the stupidest thing Ive read for a while. 99% of new studnets havnt got a clue about ITF/WTF and the rest of it.. so it makes no difference to them, and those that learn about it whilst training at my school, dont care anyway. in fact, TBH, it would more likely lose the school money than gain it, as Id have to charge more for everything to cover all the ITF fees for this and that.

Our/my history is ITF also, however, upon leaving the ITF we changed our advertising to Ch'ang Hon as selling ourselves as ITF would not show good integrity.
As I have never run my club as ITF anything, but simply Rayners Lane Taekwon-do Academy I had no reason to change anything.

And now after looking at his bio, I understand why a lot of his self-defense extrapolations smack of Judo.
Apart from the fact Judo techniques are part of TKD anyway, of course my small look into judo had an influence, though in the whole scheme of things this is minimal. In fact Gen choi's small look into Hapkido had an influence on him as well!


Have any of the ITF's endorse his book as their standard.
Doubtful as they toe the party line like you and anything not in the big book isnt TKD, but senior ITF masters have been reported teaching applications from the book.. though they havnt publically acknowledged it. What was that you said about integrity?

Maybe Mr. Anslow could clear up these questions.
Hope thats clear enough!

Futhermore,
I don't call Mr. Anslows extrapolations TKD.
Why! Everything I do is based on TKD!!!

It's just some made up stuff that you want to teach.
Actually its a critical analyasis of what was taught to me!! And I wont even use that as a reference back to the tuls!

However, the next step for Mr. Anslow is much bigger.
To develop his own style based on his research, but please, don't call it TKD. There are enough imitators out there.
Now Im getting narked!! How dare you say what I teach isnt TKD or that its an imitation.. being open minded and wanting to make what you teach more wholesome (for want of a better word) and practical & useful isnt imitation.. its innovation. Being closed minded only stunts the arts growth.


Now to state that the only purpose of patterns is to produce "practical application" then that is where I think we differ also as it appears from your discussion that you look at practical as only things you can fight with, "Self Defense".
It was General Choi who stated that btw... "tul is a series of offensive and defensive movements.. etc."

Stuart
 

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Now the above post is out the way, I would like to thanks exile and others for their comments on the book and what we are trying to achieve. I say we, as I know I am not alone in this.

Your comments were very gratifying (I say that in a humbling way) and I really appreciate them. One small thing.. Yi, Yun Wook was not the General, it was his father, though he has also trained with the ROK and the legendary instructors/pioneers noted in the book.

Thanks again,

Stuart
 

StuartA

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I dont post as often as I use to on forums these days, but will check out some of the other topics when I have some time, as some look very interesting.

Feel free to email/PM if I can be of any use to anyone.

Regards,

Stuart
 

exile

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Stuart?! Whoa, the man himself! I very much appreciate your input and willingness to speak to the points that have been raised in this thread.

My own sense is that what we've really been talking about is the combat content of hyungs in TKD and their relation to self-defense. I think of your books, along with those of people like Iain Abernthy and his group, and the Combat TKD newsletters that Simon O'Neil has put out, as constituting the living demonstration of just what that content is, how to identify it, and (implicitly) how to train it in noncompliant attacker/defender scenarios—what Abernethy calls bunkai-based sparring. Clearly, if there is serious combat content implicit in the forms, then these represent a valuable resource for teaching SD skills. But beyond that, if a school does not teach you how to 'read' the forms, the 'decoding' methods that allow you to parse a given form and identify the kind of combat principles and techniques that are contained in it, then in my view the curriculum is denying you access to a crucial tool that individual TKDists (andother kinds of karateka) need to continue their own personal MA education and investigation of the art. That kind of growth through individual research and experimentation is something that becomes more and more important as you advance through the ranks and start trying to build your own version of the art for yourself—as all martial artists who pursue their art in depth wind up doing. Learning to read and intepret combatively the hyungs of TKD is the analogue of, well... learning to read!

Of course you can forego the hyungs and teach nothing but applications directly, in the matter of Hapkido drills. But given the huge body of combat information that's already present in the hyungs, I honestly do not see what sense it makes to in effect 'compile out' the combat subsequences of the forms and teach them as a bunch of isolated techs. As Bill Burgar says, forms are unmatched as mnemonics for teaching you many different applications at once. And let's face it, there may well be information in the hyung that your instructor hasn't seen, which you yourself might see one day if you keep studying it—but which you'll never get access to if you don't learn the form in the first place.

For those reasons, I think that schools which do not teach the forms, or do not teach students, as they reach more advanced stages, how to think about realistic combat interpretations of the forms, are doing their students a disservice. But my argument is based on the premise that the forms themselves do encrypt a rich variety of practical fighting applications. The reason for my invoking Stuart's book, and the other sources I've referred to, was simply to document the broad and deep evidence assembled (in large part by the 'extended' BCA group, along with others such as Burgar, O'Neil, Rick Clark etc.) that the forms do embody very specific strategic and tactical guidance relevant to the hardest street attack situations. (Apart from which, of course, it's a very good book! :) )
 

kidswarrior

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I dont post as often as I use to on forums these days, but will check out some of the other topics when I have some time, as some look very interesting.

Feel free to email/PM if I can be of any use to anyone.

Regards,

Stuart
Welcome to Martial Talk, Stuart! Hope you enjoy the limited time you have to spend, and we look forward to your experience and expertise.
 

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Yes they have the ITF badge and tree, but the designer of the badge (C K Choi I believe) has stated that the badge is for all taekwon-do.. not just the ITF groups, so I am free to use it.. same with the ITF tree I believe.. though they both came "built in" on the uniforms so I had no choice anyway. Still, I see it as a great way to pay homage to the style I study and teach as ITF is commonly (though incorrectly) refered to as the style and this is what I teach (though I refer to it as ch'ang hon TKD these days, now that the name is more widely know).

In the US, the ITF tree and logo is copyrighted - and the copyright belongs to the USTF. Several organizations whose students formerly wore this uniform were threatened with lawsuits if they continued to do so - including some that belong to one of the 3 ITF's.
 

StuartA

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Stuart?! Whoa, the man himself! I very much appreciate your input and willingness to speak to the points that have been raised in this thread.
LOL.. no different from anyone else here!

My own sense is that what we've really been talking about is the combat content of hyungs in TKD and their relation to self-defense.
Thats right and to deny that exisitence is very closed minded.. even the General himself protrayed them as such.. without giving the finer details!

Clearly, if there is serious combat content implicit in the forms, then these represent a valuable resource for teaching SD skills.
I quite agree. i ahve been into pattern applications since I first read an article by master Willie lim back in the early ninties. Iain is brilliant and for a moment made we wish i had studied Wado, but then i realised I didnt and that the TKD world needs a shake up in this area!

then in my view the curriculum is denying you access to a crucial tool that individual TKDists (andother kinds of karateka) need to continue their own personal MA education and investigation of the art.
Or the evolution of the art itself. Some are closed minded... "if the General didnt say it was so then it cannot be" etc. This area I discussed in detail in the book... Choi did many great things but was only human and a product of his enviroment!

As Bill Burgar says, forms are unmatched as mnemonics for teaching you many different applications at once.
Ive not read Bills book, but i completely agree. Furthermore, TKD is not going to get rid of the froms for testing etc. they are tained so much, so why not make them a more valuable part of training... thats my opinion.

And let's face it, there may well be information in the hyung that your instructor hasn't seen, which you yourself might see one day if you keep studying it—but which you'll never get access to if you don't learn the form in the first place.
True and in the case of the book, it was only ever meant a a starting point... I never meant it to be the definitive text on applications.. some however have read parts only and read into this incorrectly.

For those reasons, I think that schools which do not teach the forms, or do not teach students, as they reach more advanced stages, how to think about realistic combat interpretations of the forms, are doing their students a disservice.
So do I... very very much so!

But my argument is based on the premise that the forms themselves do encrypt a rich variety of practical fighting applications. The reason for my invoking Stuart's book, and the other sources I've referred to, was simply to document the broad and deep evidence assembled (in large part by the 'extended' BCA group, along with others such as Burgar, O'Neil, Rick Clark etc.) that the forms do emody very specific strategic and tactical guidance relevant to the hardest street attack situations. (Apart from which, of course, it's a very good book! :) )
I should point out that Im not a direct member of the BCA.. though the guys in it are awesome examples of martial artists.. I just havnt really thought about it all that way.


Stuart
 

StuartA

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Welcome to Martial Talk, Stuart! Hope you enjoy the limited time you have to spend, and we look forward to your experience and expertise.

Thanks for the welcome. time permitting Ill try and offer what I can... but I can already see there are lots of educated martial artists on here, so my imput may be limited.

Stuart
 

StuartA

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In the US, the ITF tree and logo is copyrighted - and the copyright belongs to the USTF. Several organizations whose students formerly wore this uniform were threatened with lawsuits if they continued to do so - including some that belong to one of the 3 ITF's.

Last I heard was that the copyright issue was thrown out and that the court rules that as they have been in exsistance for so long, by so mant, no one would be allowed to exclude others in using them!

I have contacted an ITF man in the know on this issue and will report back once I hear from him. The USTF is no longer part of any ITF, though are thinking of jining ITF-V I think.. still, why would they want to enforce such a thing anyway!

Bottom line is:
1. C K choi the designer of the logo said it is allowed by all.. technically, he holds any real copyright
2. Im in the UK, so US rulings dont affect me
3. I dont really care about it TBH. If they wanna cover the costs of my students uniforms and make a big ho ha about it, Ill happily change.. until then.. I dont care.. Im a martial artists, not a bickering baby.. those orgs should take note!

Stuart
 

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