Moving this summer

skribs

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I'll be moving around 2000 miles this summer. My family has been growing unhappy with the local politics. My sister and her family moved 2 years ago. My parents (2nd and 3rd Dan in TKD) moved last year. I (3rd Dan, very near 4th) will be moving this year. I had my Dad scout around the different schools within our organization that are also within driving distance of where they live. He went to one school that's about 15-20 minutes away, and the Master's attitude was, "I wouldn't know what class to put him in; and this school is like a family, how would the students think if I brought in someone outside the family?" He went to another school that's about 20-30 minutes away, and the Master's attitude was, "We can get him his 4th Dan and help him open a school in your town, since there aren't any Kukkiwon schools there."

For some reason, I think I'm going to look into going to the further school when I move.

One thing I've found is his YouTube channel, in which he shows the Taegeuks, as well as his beginner forms, and his other rote curriculum (i.e. basic technique exercises and self-defense one-steps). I'm not sure if this is the entire curriculum or not, but I'm thinking it's something to practice before I go. I'll be quitting my current school at the end of April, and won't be ready to start down there until August. I definitely want to practice my Taegeuks and Yudanja forms to retain them (and for exercise), but I'm thinking I want to add on the material I've seen on his YouTube channel. That way, when I get down there, I at least have a leg up on learning everything.

Do you think this would show my initiative? Or would it be seen more as hubris that I can teach myself?
 

Monkey Turned Wolf

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If it's stuff that you haven't learned before/isn't in your curriculum, I'd recommend not learning it. No matter how similar it is, there's going to be stuff that you have to unlearn. If you end up teaching, there might be stuff that you misunderstand through the videos without even realizing you misunderstand, and spread that when you teach.

That's my personal opinion though. He may view it differently. If you already know him/your dad's talked to him while over there, the best option would just be to reach out to him directly and ask. He might be perfectly fine with it, he might not be. He could also recommend what he thinks would be good for you to train during those 4 months you're not at your current school.
 

Yokozuna514

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I'll be moving around 2000 miles this summer. My family has been growing unhappy with the local politics. My sister and her family moved 2 years ago. My parents (2nd and 3rd Dan in TKD) moved last year. I (3rd Dan, very near 4th) will be moving this year. I had my Dad scout around the different schools within our organization that are also within driving distance of where they live. He went to one school that's about 15-20 minutes away, and the Master's attitude was, "I wouldn't know what class to put him in; and this school is like a family, how would the students think if I brought in someone outside the family?" He went to another school that's about 20-30 minutes away, and the Master's attitude was, "We can get him his 4th Dan and help him open a school in your town, since there aren't any Kukkiwon schools there."

For some reason, I think I'm going to look into going to the further school when I move.

One thing I've found is his YouTube channel, in which he shows the Taegeuks, as well as his beginner forms, and his other rote curriculum (i.e. basic technique exercises and self-defense one-steps). I'm not sure if this is the entire curriculum or not, but I'm thinking it's something to practice before I go. I'll be quitting my current school at the end of April, and won't be ready to start down there until August. I definitely want to practice my Taegeuks and Yudanja forms to retain them (and for exercise), but I'm thinking I want to add on the material I've seen on his YouTube channel. That way, when I get down there, I at least have a leg up on learning everything.

Do you think this would show my initiative? Or would it be seen more as hubris that I can teach myself?
If I was in your situation I would trial them both. Your welcome (or lack thereof) will be evident when you step into your first class. What you know and are able to demonstrate will also show so if they want you they will find a place for you. Walk in with a 'white belt' attitude and see which place suits you better. After all, you are looking for a second home and have to be comfortable and enjoy not only the facilities but the people you will be training beside.
 

wab25

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If you are comfortable sharing where you are moving to, you may find some people here that can give you recommendations. (not looking for a street address... but if you were moving to the Orlando area in Florida, I could give you some places to check out, and still not have a clue where you were...)

Anyway, in my opinion, both schools sound fishy to me. The first one does not want new students? The second one wants to promote someone they have not yet met, let alone know anything about your ability, and then help them set up a school...? I would watch for a pyramid type thing there...

I second the "white belt" attitude mentioned above. I would walk in and say, "I just moved into town and am looking for a place to train." When they ask about your previous experience, I would answer "I have been training in X style for Y years, and am looking to continue my training." If they don't ask about rank, I would not bring it up. If they invite you to try a class, I would put on a white belt. Let them ask about rank and let them suggest you wear your black belt.

Good luck in your move and in finding a new place to train. Both can be challenging...
 

Tony Dismukes

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I second the "white belt" attitude mentioned above. I would walk in and say, "I just moved into town and am looking for a place to train." When they ask about your previous experience, I would answer "I have been training in X style for Y years, and am looking to continue my training." If they don't ask about rank, I would not bring it up. If they invite you to try a class, I would put on a white belt. Let them ask about rank and let them suggest you wear your black belt.
I think that would largely depend on the system being taught.

If I were to move and join a new BJJ school, I would expect to wear my black belt. Most instructors would consider it strange or some sort of prank if I did not. (There are one or two prominent instructors I am aware of who do not automatically recognize rank from other schools, but they are in a vanishingly small minority. If I was joining one of their schools, then I would go along with whatever they wanted me to wear.)

If I joined a school for a system I wasn't ranked in, then I would expect to wear a white belt or the equivalent for that art.
 

Monkey Turned Wolf

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If you are comfortable sharing where you are moving to, you may find some people here that can give you recommendations. (not looking for a street address... but if you were moving to the Orlando area in Florida, I could give you some places to check out, and still not have a clue where you were...)

Anyway, in my opinion, both schools sound fishy to me. The first one does not want new students? The second one wants to promote someone they have not yet met, let alone know anything about your ability, and then help them set up a school...? I would watch for a pyramid type thing there...

I second the "white belt" attitude mentioned above. I would walk in and say, "I just moved into town and am looking for a place to train." When they ask about your previous experience, I would answer "I have been training in X style for Y years, and am looking to continue my training." If they don't ask about rank, I would not bring it up. If they invite you to try a class, I would put on a white belt. Let them ask about rank and let them suggest you wear your black belt.

Good luck in your move and in finding a new place to train. Both can be challenging...
I'm under the (fairly safe) assumption that he's looking at other kukkiwon schools based on the info he provided. In that case, it'd be pretty misleading for him to come in wearing a white belt, as if he's a new student to the style. It would be different if he was going to a judo school or something, even with ranks in hapkido.
 

wab25

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I think that would largely depend on the system being taught.

If I were to move and join a new BJJ school, I would expect to wear my black belt. Most instructors would consider it strange or some sort of prank if I did not. (There are one or two prominent instructors I am aware of who do not automatically recognize rank from other schools, but they are in a vanishingly small minority. If I was joining one of their schools, then I would go along with whatever they wanted me to wear.)

If I joined a school for a system I wasn't ranked in, then I would expect to wear a white belt or the equivalent for that art.

I'm under the (fairly safe) assumption that he's looking at other kukkiwon schools based on the info he provided. In that case, it'd be pretty misleading for him to come in wearing a white belt, as if he's a new student to the style. It would be different if he was going to a judo school or something, even with ranks in hapkido.
Its more the attitude thing. If you go into a new school, in the same art that you have been training in... I would expect them to get around to asking about rank, especially if you have some years in the art... and expect them to want you to wear your rank. I think it just comes off a little better to say "Hey, I moved here, and am looking to continue training. I have 10 years training in this art from back home... I am hoping I could train with you." Coming in with "Hey, I am a 5th dan instructor at my old place... and want to be an instructor here..."

(I am not implying that Skribs would say the second....)

In some places, a little humility can really open the door and in others a perceived lack of humility can really close some doors.
 
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@Yokozuna514 In a Taekwondo school, I'm not necessarily looking for a new home. More like a new camping ground.

My Dad went in with the attitude of, "My son is moving here soon, here is his situation, and here are his goals." I feel that the second Master's attitude was, "Those are goals we can help achieve", and not, "Have him walk in here and sign some papers and I'll give him what he wants."

It's possible that he will want me to franchise under him. It would be my choice whether to do that, or whether to venture out on my own. I think at this point, I'm going to try him first, and if I'm not happy there I'll try the other. In either case, I'm not looking for a long-term home.

@wab25 Teaching is one of my favorite things about martial arts, and I think it would be dishonest to go in with the attitude that I'm not planning on teaching. I don't plan on teaching right away (he'll want to get an idea of my character and ability first). But I've got thousands of hours of experience, and it's something I enjoy doing. I also expect that if he's going to do his due diligence in evaluating me for Master rank, he's going to want to see me teach.

When I do start teaching, I also plan on teaching his way (with a little bit of my flavoring). I don't plan on doing things my way, the way I plan to when I open my own school. I also don't plan on doing things my old Master's way, what I've been doing. Of course, I'll probably learn some things about teaching from him. The first classes I help out with, my plan is mostly to be a fly on the wall and observe his approach.

@Tony Dismukes I do plan on starting up BJJ as well, and I plan on going in as a white belt who knows virtually nothing about groundfighting (except for wrestling I did 20 years ago, and sucked at). Of course, at some point I'd like to teach it, because as I said - I like teaching martial arts.
 

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@wab25 Teaching is one of my favorite things about martial arts, and I think it would be dishonest to go in with the attitude that I'm not planning on teaching. I don't plan on teaching right away (he'll want to get an idea of my character and ability first). But I've got thousands of hours of experience, and it's something I enjoy doing. I also expect that if he's going to do his due diligence in evaluating me for Master rank, he's going to want to see me teach.
Look at it from his point of view. He has built up his school over the years. Part of that was choosing his instructors. Now some new guy shows up, saying "I want to teach at your place." So, now the school owner has to pull some of his instructors, from classes that they are currently teaching, to allow the new guy to have classes to teach. (how would you react to being pulled from half the classes you currently teach, so that some new guy from across the country and teach them for you...? Skribs, you have been teaching these classes for a few years now, the students like you, they are learning... but step aside, this new guy we don't know anything about moved in and said that he is an amazing instructor...) The owner knows nothing about the new guy, his character or abilities. Further, the new guy does not yet know how he stacks up against the owner / head instructor... the other instructors... or even the students... yet he is asking for the owner to pull instructors, and turn them over. (I have seen green and brown belts at some schools that are technically better than nidans and sandans at other schools... in the same art and even in the same organization...) Some may see this as being a little presumptuous... "I have never seen you guys train, trained with you or interacted with you in any way... but I am sure that I will be able to teach you how to do it better..."

He should want to get to learn your character and ability first anyway. Humility and a willingness to learn are great character traits for others to see. To make his evaluation, he will want to see you teach anyway... so, its already in the cards for you.

Anyway, I hope things work out for you with the move.
 
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Look at it from his point of view. He has built up his school over the years. Part of that was choosing his instructors. Now some new guy shows up, saying "I want to teach at your place." So, now the school owner has to pull some of his instructors, from classes that they are currently teaching, to allow the new guy to have classes to teach. (how would you react to being pulled from half the classes you currently teach, so that some new guy from across the country and teach them for you...? Skribs, you have been teaching these classes for a few years now, the students like you, they are learning... but step aside, this new guy we don't know anything about moved in and said that he is an amazing instructor...) The owner knows nothing about the new guy, his character or abilities. Further, the new guy does not yet know how he stacks up against the owner / head instructor... the other instructors... or even the students... yet he is asking for the owner to pull instructors, and turn them over. (I have seen green and brown belts at some schools that are technically better than nidans and sandans at other schools... in the same art and even in the same organization...) Some may see this as being a little presumptuous... "I have never seen you guys train, trained with you or interacted with you in any way... but I am sure that I will be able to teach you how to do it better..."
You make it sound like I'm going to go in there and demand that I start teaching on Day 1. This is clearly not what I'm planning on doing, when I said, "I don't plan on teaching right away (he'll want to get an idea of my character and ability first)."

Also, why does he have to pull other instructors? Why does he have to phrase it like this? He could also say, "Hello, we are adding a new instructor to the class. He's just going to observe for now, but I'm going to have him lead every once in a while because I want to assess his teaching style."

He should want to get to learn your character and ability first anyway. Humility and a willingness to learn are great character traits for others to see. To make his evaluation, he will want to see you teach anyway... so, its already in the cards for you.
Yeah, I said all that. "I also expect that if he's going to do his due diligence in evaluating me for Master rank, he's going to want to see me teach."

I would be going in with the assumption that at first, I would be a student; but that there is a progression towards doing some instruction.
 

Yokozuna514

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@Yokozuna514 In a Taekwondo school, I'm not necessarily looking for a new home. More like a new camping ground.

My Dad went in with the attitude of, "My son is moving here soon, here is his situation, and here are his goals." I feel that the second Master's attitude was, "Those are goals we can help achieve", and not, "Have him walk in here and sign some papers and I'll give him what he wants."

It's possible that he will want me to franchise under him. It would be my choice whether to do that, or whether to venture out on my own. I think at this point, I'm going to try him first, and if I'm not happy there I'll try the other. In either case, I'm not looking for a long-term home.

@wab25 Teaching is one of my favorite things about martial arts, and I think it would be dishonest to go in with the attitude that I'm not planning on teaching. I don't plan on teaching right away (he'll want to get an idea of my character and ability first). But I've got thousands of hours of experience, and it's something I enjoy doing. I also expect that if he's going to do his due diligence in evaluating me for Master rank, he's going to want to see me teach.

When I do start teaching, I also plan on teaching his way (with a little bit of my flavoring). I don't plan on doing things my way, the way I plan to when I open my own school. I also don't plan on doing things my old Master's way, what I've been doing. Of course, I'll probably learn some things about teaching from him. The first classes I help out with, my plan is mostly to be a fly on the wall and observe his approach.

@Tony Dismukes I do plan on starting up BJJ as well, and I plan on going in as a white belt who knows virtually nothing about groundfighting (except for wrestling I did 20 years ago, and sucked at). Of course, at some point I'd like to teach it, because as I said - I like teaching martial arts.
Ok, if you prefer camping ground to home, that may be just a matter of words that have slightly different meanings for us but essentially the message I was trying to convey remains the same. Wab25 has already explained it further so no need for me to rehash the point I was making.

I can understand how you feel about teaching as I feel the same way. I am sure many of us that teach feel equally rewarded. That being said, both TKD schools are essentially small businesses where the owners may not be so willing to turn over class time to someone he doesn't know regardless of their qualifications. Not at least without some vetting. Teaching is a position of trust and that is a position that should be earned unless you are financially responsible for opening the door (and perhaps when you do as well).

As many have already said, go in with some humility and perhaps some doors will be open to you. Walking in expecting to placed in the teaching hierarchy may send the wrong signals but regardless of what you do, I wish you luck in your next adventure.
 
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I can understand how you feel about teaching as I feel the same way. I am sure many of us that teach feel equally rewarded. That being said, both TKD schools are essentially small businesses where the owners may not be so willing to turn over class time to someone he doesn't know regardless of their qualifications. Not at least without some vetting. Teaching is a position of trust and that is a position that should be earned unless you are financially responsible for opening the door (and perhaps when you do as well).
Why is there this assumption that I'm going to go in and grunt, "Me third dan. Me teach....No. Not student. Teacher. Me teach. Good teach. Other teacher suck. Me better. LET. ME. TEEEEEAAAAAACCHHHHH!!"

Instead, I plan on having a conversation with the Master of my intentions and goals, and see his expectations of me so I can meet those goals. I figure we can have an adult conversation in which we figure out our compatibility.

I'll do my best to balance humility and confidence. I'm going to go in with an open mind to new ways of doing things, but I'm also not going to go in under the assumption that I don't know anything or can't do anything.
 

Monkey Turned Wolf

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Why is there this assumption that I'm going to go in and grunt, "Me third dan. Me teach....No. Not student. Teacher. Me teach. Good teach. Other teacher suck. Me better. LET. ME. TEEEEEAAAAAACCHHHHH!!"

Instead, I plan on having a conversation with the Master of my intentions and goals, and see his expectations of me so I can meet those goals. I figure we can have an adult conversation in which we figure out our compatibility.

I'll do my best to balance humility and confidence. I'm going to go in with an open mind to new ways of doing things, but I'm also not going to go in under the assumption that I don't know anything or can't do anything.
If it helps, I do not have the assumption.

My only recommendation conversation-wise that it doesn't seem you've done is give him a call beforehand to discuss whether or not he thinks you should try to learn his course-specific material on your own or if you should just focus on your taeguks til then.

Mostly repeating that since it was your original question and I think my first response might have got lost in the rest of this.
 
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If it helps, I do not have the assumption.

My only recommendation conversation-wise that it doesn't seem you've done is give him a call beforehand to discuss whether or not he thinks you should try to learn his course-specific material on your own or if you should just focus on your taeguks til then.

Mostly repeating that since it was your original question and I think my first response might have got lost in the rest of this.
I'd prefer introductions to be face-to-face is all.
 

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If you're leaning towards the second school (I'm with you on that one), and you are interested in becoming an instructor under this person, then I think you should reach out to them and see what they'd recommend. Brushing up on your Taegeuk forms would be a good choice for any KKW school, but for the school-specific stuff, they might have better or different resources available or have some kind of plan put together to help you get up to speed on their curriculum. It sounds like they'd be receptive to you joining their organization, and I can tell you that recruiting an outside instructor that's worth a **** is tough, so hopefully they appreciate your interest and are eager to help you get started.
 
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I think you should reach out to them and see what they'd recommend. Brushing up on your Taegeuk forms would be a good choice for any KKW school, but for the school-specific stuff, they might have better or different resources available or have some kind of plan put together to help you get up to speed on their curriculum.
As I mentioned above, I think I'd prefer a face-to-face introduction. I think that would be a good way to avoid any miscommunications, and it also shows my sincerity. Right now, I'm just someone 2000 miles away, who says he will join his school in 4 months.

I think I am going to follow what he's posted on Youtube. I can always adjust when I get down there, and 3 months of practice isn't going to get me too set in the wrong ways of doing things. I do wish my current Master had better resources for our students (and especially instructors) for memorizing things. He has a TON in the curriculum.

In fact, that's one thing I like about the school I'm planning on joining. When my Dad talked to the Master, the Master said that a lot of younger Masters will bloat the curriculum and "over-test", because they're overcompensating for the reputation Taekwondo has for McDojos. He's a little bit older and a degree higher than my current Master. One of the things I hear a lot from the other black belts is how much we have on our tests. Including one who was in the military and bounced around to several different schools. He was at my school before I joined, and he returned a few years ago. He said at one point, my Master had a senior Master judging my friend's black belt test. At the end of it, the senior Master came up to him and said, "Wow, that was a lot of stuff you had to do."

So I'm thinking there's probably going to be a lot less to memorize at this school than I have at my school, and I already memorize very, very fast.

Side note: My Master even acknowledges that he does this, only he doesn't see it as a problem. In fact, he told me I should basically be able to walk into any school where I'm going at get my 4th degree. On the one hand, I completely disregarded that, because I know that there will be school-specific stuff to learn anywhere I go, and they're going to want to get an idea of my skill and character before testing me. On the other hand, I was a little bit upset that if I'm supposedly good enough to get a 4th degree anywhere else, couldn't he just give me that version of the test?

recruiting an outside instructor that's worth a **** is tough, so hopefully they appreciate your interest and are eager to help you get started.
Or even an inside instructor. (Especially with the way the curriculum is structured at my school).
 

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Side note: My Master even acknowledges that he does this, only he doesn't see it as a problem. In fact, he told me I should basically be able to walk into any school where I'm going at get my 4th degree. On the one hand, I completely disregarded that, because I know that there will be school-specific stuff to learn anywhere I go, and they're going to want to get an idea of my skill and character before testing me. On the other hand, I was a little bit upset that if I'm supposedly good enough to get a 4th degree anywhere else, couldn't he just give me that version of the test?
As I recall, your current school uses the Palgwae forms, not the taegeuk. And they're not even the original Palgwae, correct?
So he's probably wrong. If you go to a pure KKW school to test, you're likely to run into problems when they tell you to do Taegeuk 7.
 

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As I mentioned above, I think I'd prefer a face-to-face introduction. I think that would be a good way to avoid any miscommunications, and it also shows my sincerity. Right now, I'm just someone 2000 miles away, who says he will join his school in 4 months.
And there is a real possibility that you could arrive there, take some classes at his school and decide you hate him and how he runs his school, and you want nothing to do with him. So making some kind of implied commitment at this stage is probably premature.

I moved across the country to train capoeira, with the assumption that I would train at the main school with which ours was affiliated. I discovered the head teacher was unbalanced and I could not work with him, so I found a different teacher. I wished my move had been kept quiet so I could have simply scoped out the options first, before anyone had any expectations of what I would do.
 
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As I recall, your current school uses the Palgwae forms, not the taegeuk. And they're not even the original Palgwae, correct?
So he's probably wrong. If you go to a pure KKW school to test, you're likely to run into problems when they tell you to do Taegeuk 7.
A couple of years ago, we started doing the Taegeuks as well. At least...for the black belts. We've been spending a lot of time in the black belt class on the Kukkiwon forms.

We had a schedule to implement them in the colored belt curriculum, but that doesn't seem to be going according to the timeline we planned. I don't really have visibility on those classes anymore, as my duties have been scaled back recently. However, whenever I have helped one of the advanced belts, they've told me they only need the Palgwes.

Edit-to-add: This actually compounds the problem of his bloated curriculum, because he hasn't removed anything else to make up for the Taegeuks being implemented. So instead, we just have 8 new forms added to what was already a bloated curriculum to begin with.
 

auntlisa1103

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I would agree with your lean toward the second school. But I would caution you not to promise yourself or the Master anything. There could be more school specific stuff than you think. If you came to my school it would be at least one-steps from white belt, saju kong bongs from white belt, and ho sin suls (grab defenses) from yellow belt. Plus we do all taegeuks until brown belt, then switch to chang hon. So if you were entering my school from a school that doesnt incorporate those, you would have a TON to learn.

And, whoever said you might hate the guy and his style is also very right. Dont commit before you have a good feel for the environment.

That said. Teaching is part of traveling the journey. My GM has people help teach small amounts of stuff one on one as early as 5th gup, depending on age and skill with whatever technique. Its just expected that you help pass it forward.

So go in willing and interested, but clear on taking it slowly and building relationships. Also, I get wanting to introduce yourself face to face, however, dont try to do it right before a class starts. If they are anything like mine, I feel like most Masters will be a little rushed and may not feel like they have enough time to talk with you properly.

Also as a sidebar from someone I know who entered our school as a blue belt: take all your certificates with you, or at a bear minimum your third dan certificate.
 

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