Looking into Hapkido

paperguynj

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i have been looking into different Martial arts and trying to decide what to do. I went to a BJJ class and I loved it. They also do MT and teach striking. I want to a few Krav Maga classes and like that as well. We have a reputable Hapkido school near us and was wondering if that would be a good option as well. I am looking for a good workout, this will be replacing the Crossfit I have been doing for the past 8 years. I also want to learn a great system and possibly compete. I am 46 years old. Would like be to hear from Hapkido veterans about your thoughts on the art and what it offers.
 

WaterGal

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If you're really interested in competing, I'd suggest going with the BJJ. HKD doesn't really have a competition scene in the US (I'm assuming the NJ in your name is for New Jersey), and doesn't tend to be very sport-focused.

As for what HKD has to offer... first off, I should say, HKD is very decentralized, so every school is going to be different.

That being said, Hapkido is hybrid art, combining standing grappling with striking. Some schools also include some basic ground grappling to be more comprehensive, but don't expect a lot of detail on that like you'd get in BJJ. HKD tends to avoid going to the ground, taking a general approach that could be summed up as "throw the bad guy on the ground, kick him in the head, and escape".

In my experience, Hapkido tends to have more focus on small joint manipulation compared with BJJ (lots of wrist locks, fewer leg locks or chokes), and more shoulder throws and sweeps. I personally like that, because the self-defense situation I'm probably most likely to encounter is "sleazy guy tries to grope me", and IMO a standing wrist or arm lock is a better solution to that compared with a triangle choke (less likely to get me in trouble anyway, lol).

How much of a workout the class provides is going to entirely depend on the school. It could be anywhere from easy to intense.

Ultimately, I think you need to just go and take a class and see how you like it.
 

oftheherd1

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If you're really interested in competing, I'd suggest going with the BJJ. HKD doesn't really have a competition scene in the US (I'm assuming the NJ in your name is for New Jersey), and doesn't tend to be very sport-focused.

As for what HKD has to offer... first off, I should say, HKD is very decentralized, so every school is going to be different.

That being said, Hapkido is hybrid art, combining standing grappling with striking. Some schools also include some basic ground grappling to be more comprehensive, but don't expect a lot of detail on that like you'd get in BJJ. HKD tends to avoid going to the ground, taking a general approach that could be summed up as "throw the bad guy on the ground, kick him in the head, and escape".

In my experience, Hapkido tends to have more focus on small joint manipulation compared with BJJ (lots of wrist locks, fewer leg locks or chokes), and more shoulder throws and sweeps. I personally like that, because the self-defense situation I'm probably most likely to encounter is "sleazy guy tries to grope me", and IMO a standing wrist or arm lock is a better solution to that compared with a triangle choke (less likely to get me in trouble anyway, lol).

How much of a workout the class provides is going to entirely depend on the school. It could be anywhere from easy to intense.

Ultimately, I think you need to just go and take a class and see how you like it.

I agree. For the most part you aren't going to find a lot of competition; too dangerous, and Hapkido doesn't have a lot of rules other than to survive. In general Hapkido tends to think along the lines of we didn't want to fight to begin with, and we don't want to do this again. So expect something painful and injurious to happen to an opponent. In general, we want to take away an opponent's ability and will to fight. Injury takes away the ability to continue to fight, pain every time you try an attack takes away the will to fight.

But every Kwan and to an extent, every school within a Kwan, gets to choose some of its own teaching content. If you have a Hapkido school near, do go and at least observe. And ask questions when you can do so without disrupting the class. You may or may not like what you see. It is your choice. Hapkido isn't for everyone.
 

skribs

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My Dad asked a professional MMA fighter why they don't use hapkido in MMA. Her answer is that most of the moves there are illegal. There's the other fact that your wrists are wrapped up, and many hapkido techniques focus on attacking the wrist. Now, that's not to say a hapkido expert wouldn't have moves they could use, but those moves in particular will probably also be found in Judo and BJJ, which are a lot more common in MMA.

With that said, the most important thing is to find a master you like and a school that meets your needs, more than what specific art you practice.
 

Hanshi

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What the other posts said. Hapkido varies widely from school to school; possibly more so than other arts. You can't really "compete" in hapkido; you would have to do what everybody else does in competition, grappling, tkd, karate, etc. Same goes for traditional aikido.
 

Jaeimseu

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Im a little late to the party, but I can say that a lot of the Hapkido Ive seen looks pretty cool. I learned quite a few Hapkido style techniques in Taekwondo, and I still teach some of it to my Taekwondo students. The only issue for me is that Im highly skeptical of a lot of the entries Ive seen to some of the techniques. Ive seen too many attacks that seem unrealistic to me (grabbing punches out of the air).


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oftheherd1

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Im a little late to the party, but I can say that a lot of the Hapkido Ive seen looks pretty cool. I learned quite a few Hapkido style techniques in Taekwondo, and I still teach some of it to my Taekwondo students. The only issue for me is that Im highly skeptical of a lot of the entries Ive seen to some of the techniques. Ive seen too many attacks that seem unrealistic to me (grabbing punches out of the air).


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First, grabbing a punch would not normally be considered an attack; Hapkido is more defense oriented, although a Hapkidoist can use many techniques in offense.

You can't rely on an opponent's not expecting any and all defensive techniques. However, sometimes that lack of expectation allows some things to work better than if the defense was a common defense and therefore anticipated. That said, I don't think grabbing punches is too common except to continue to a joint lock. I was taught one defense technique where the wrist would be grabbed when a punch was thrown against me. I was taught to step inside the punch and as I grabbed the punch, I would plant my foot and spring back pulling the wrist up and out. Done quickly and properly, the attacker has little time to react and is pulled a little up and the rapidly forward until you snap the wrist and arm down. Some unprepared part of his body would then likely hit the ground forcefully. Like many moves in Hapkido, it must be practiced over and over and over again. Accuracy and speed are essential for most Hapkido moves, and certainly in that one.

Another would be stepping outside the punch (assuming a right hand punch) and block by striking/grabbing the attacker's forearm with your left arm, and sliding your hand down to grab his wrist. As your hand reaches his wrist, you right open hand should strike the back of the opponent's hand as you pull his wrist as you step around to your left. Instant joint lock and takedown. Sounds complicated, but when learned, it just flows.

Are those the type of things you are talking about?
 

oldwarrior

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When you are talking about "grabbing a punch" I'm not sure I follow that as in your description you are from my point anyway trying to join with your attacker and in the rest of what your describing could be (again from my point) the start of several moves or techniques...

I don't know anything really about Happkido really so please to forgive
 

Jaeimseu

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When you are talking about "grabbing a punch" I'm not sure I follow that as in your description you are from my point anyway trying to join with your attacker and in the rest of what your describing could be (again from my point) the start of several moves or techniques...

I don't know anything really about Happkido really so please to forgive

Yeah, sorry if that wasnt clear. I was referring to the one-step sparring type punch attacks where the defense is block and grab the wrist. Its easy to perform that kind defense against a lunge punch in a front stance, but who really attacks like that?


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oldwarrior

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I understand what your saying

Don't tho get caught up in the who attacks like that sphere as if your alluding to a street situation them more than likely not ...however if you look on it as a way to sharpen your reflexes and to make any technique you use like and old friend that will flow naturally then it is worthwhile.

I always hold this in mind what ever the art if it is based on either a direct lineage or if it is "new" (I use that word loosely) then the techniques came from a different age and a different mind set to that off today ...so what may have seemed very normal then may not now ...that said if someone tries to attack you with a stick for example then any of the techniques that came from blocking a sword or staff will work just as well.

If your looking for real life systems then I'd suggest looking at ones that were developed and proven in the 20th cent ...but that just my opinion for all that worth


Study the Art for the Art and what it gives you internally not just externally
 

Jaeimseu

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I understand what your saying

Don't tho get caught up in the who attacks like that sphere as if your alluding to a street situation them more than likely not ...however if you look on it as a way to sharpen your reflexes and to make any technique you use like and old friend that will flow naturally then it is worthwhile.

I always hold this in mind what ever the art if it is based on either a direct lineage or if it is "new" (I use that word loosely) then the techniques came from a different age and a different mind set to that off today ...so what may have seemed very normal then may not now ...that said if someone tries to attack you with a stick for example then any of the techniques that came from blocking a sword or staff will work just as well.

If your looking for real life systems then I'd suggest looking at ones that were developed and proven in the 20th cent ...but that just my opinion for all that worth


Study the Art for the Art and what it gives you internally not just externally

Im not dissing the art, simply the way I have often seen it trained. I could make the same criticism of Taekwondo (my primary art) with the majority of one-step sparring self defense techniques Ive been/seen taught. If a person is relying on the attacker to throw a lunge punch in a front stance and leave the arm out there while the defender defends, theres not really a natural flow. Id say the same thing about someone practicing a rear naked choke, for example, if they only practiced a contrived drill in which the attack volunteers his back and stands idly by while the choke is applied.


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dvcochran

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If you're really interested in competing, I'd suggest going with the BJJ. HKD doesn't really have a competition scene in the US (I'm assuming the NJ in your name is for New Jersey), and doesn't tend to be very sport-focused.

As for what HKD has to offer... first off, I should say, HKD is very decentralized, so every school is going to be different.

That being said, Hapkido is hybrid art, combining standing grappling with striking. Some schools also include some basic ground grappling to be more comprehensive, but don't expect a lot of detail on that like you'd get in BJJ. HKD tends to avoid going to the ground, taking a general approach that could be summed up as "throw the bad guy on the ground, kick him in the head, and escape".

In my experience, Hapkido tends to have more focus on small joint manipulation compared with BJJ (lots of wrist locks, fewer leg locks or chokes), and more shoulder throws and sweeps. I personally like that, because the self-defense situation I'm probably most likely to encounter is "sleazy guy tries to grope me", and IMO a standing wrist or arm lock is a better solution to that compared with a triangle choke (less likely to get me in trouble anyway, lol).

How much of a workout the class provides is going to entirely depend on the school. It could be anywhere from easy to intense.

Ultimately, I think you need to just go and take a class and see how you like it.

To the joint lock, particularly the wrist; I had a long time student built like a brick. I could seldom get a joint lock on him. His forearms seemed to be more of the hurdle. If I did get a lock, it was usually preceded with a finger manipulation. Variety is very important.
 

oldwarrior

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To the joint lock, particularly the wrist; I had a long time student built like a brick. I could seldom get a joint lock on him. His forearms seemed to be more of the hurdle. If I did get a lock, it was usually preceded with a finger manipulation. Variety is very important.

A valid point for sure ... be adaptable ...see the whole picture
 

oftheherd1

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Im not dissing the art, simply the way I have often seen it trained. I could make the same criticism of Taekwondo (my primary art) with the majority of one-step sparring self defense techniques Ive been/seen taught. If a person is relying on the attacker to throw a lunge punch in a front stance and leave the arm out there while the defender defends, theres not really a natural flow. Id say the same thing about someone practicing a rear naked choke, for example, if they only practiced a contrived drill in which the attack volunteers his back and stands idly by while the choke is applied.


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Seems the bold part should only be while you are learning. The further you progress in training and execution, shouldn't you expect quicker and more realistic attacks and defenses, all at speed? Actually, the same with a rear choke. When first learning, it needs be done slowly at the beginning, but as you learn it better and better, you speed up your response. Surely you do it that way?
 

oftheherd1

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To the joint lock, particularly the wrist; I had a long time student built like a brick. I could seldom get a joint lock on him. His forearms seemed to be more of the hurdle. If I did get a lock, it was usually preceded with a finger manipulation. Variety is very important.

There are people who due to their physiology, are difficult to do certain techniques on. I of course don't know the person you are talking about, but generally, I have found the if the technique is done correctly, it will work. Don't take offense since I am not saying anything against you since I don't know the person you are talking about and he may be one of those really rare individuals. And your point is well taken, that if a technique doesn't work, it's always good to have a plan B.
 

Jaeimseu

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Seems the bold part should only be while you are learning. The further you progress in training and execution, shouldn't you expect quicker and more realistic attacks and defenses, all at speed? Actually, the same with a rear choke. When first learning, it needs be done slowly at the beginning, but as you learn it better and better, you speed up your response. Surely you do it that way?

Certainly. My comment was based on what Ive seen at many schools.


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Twisting

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If you're really interested in competing, I'd suggest going with the BJJ. HKD doesn't really have a competition scene in the US (I'm assuming the NJ in your name is for New Jersey), and doesn't tend to be very sport-focused.

As for what HKD has to offer... first off, I should say, HKD is very decentralized, so every school is going to be different.

That being said, Hapkido is hybrid art, combining standing grappling with striking. Some schools also include some basic ground grappling to be more comprehensive, but don't expect a lot of detail on that like you'd get in BJJ. HKD tends to avoid going to the ground, taking a general approach that could be summed up as "throw the bad guy on the ground, kick him in the head, and escape".

In my experience, Hapkido tends to have more focus on small joint manipulation compared with BJJ (lots of wrist locks, fewer leg locks or chokes), and more shoulder throws and sweeps. I personally like that, because the self-defense situation I'm probably most likely to encounter is "sleazy guy tries to grope me", and IMO a standing wrist or arm lock is a better solution to that compared with a triangle choke (less likely to get me in trouble anyway, lol).

How much of a workout the class provides is going to entirely depend on the school. It could be anywhere from easy to intense.

Ultimately, I think you need to just go and take a class and see how you like it.
overall, i agree, but i disagree with the idea that hapkido is a hybrid art. it's a complete art that does locking, throwing, striking. it wasn't a grappling art that added striking or a striking art that added grappling. just my 2cents.
 

Twisting

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What the other posts said. Hapkido varies widely from school to school; possibly more so than other arts. You can't really "compete" in hapkido; you would have to do what everybody else does in competition, grappling, tkd, karate, etc. Same goes for traditional aikido.
while i agree overall, different hkd orgs, have had open sparring competitions. the problem is that hkd will always be decentralized so it's hard to have the equivalent of the mundials.
 

Twisting

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Im a little late to the party, but I can say that a lot of the Hapkido Ive seen looks pretty cool. I learned quite a few Hapkido style techniques in Taekwondo, and I still teach some of it to my Taekwondo students. The only issue for me is that Im highly skeptical of a lot of the entries Ive seen to some of the techniques. Ive seen too many attacks that seem unrealistic to me (grabbing punches out of the air).


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it's right to be skeptical. sometimes hkd especially taught at other martial arts schools might not be offering you the complete picture. i'd look for credible orgs or teachers, and see how they do them. punch defense should be far after grabbing defenses.
 
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