What to add in a 1st Dan test

andyjeffries

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From doing this over the last year it has really helped with my nerves, but I guess we'll see at my 2nd dan grading (in about 12 months time), how much it will pay off.

Fingers crossed for you mate.

Something I had some black belts do last week was critique each others poomsae performances. I made sure the comments were in a nice way (by stamping on any that were worded even slightly bad) but the aim of the exercise wasn't for the performer but for those "judging"/"critiquing" them.

I did this for two reasons 1)when they get their 4th Dans they should be able to spot mistakes and make judgements about others for promoting purposes and 2)when judging if someone else is doing things properly you have to really know what the proper way was.

It seemed to have a very good effect because the demonstrators really picked their game up during their performances (so they made it hard for the judges to point out problems) and because the judges performances seemed slightly better when we worked out normally afterwards (as if they were more mentally focussed on doing things correctly).

That's only slightly related to the conversation we were having, but I thought it might be useful to someone. Maybe you, if you can get a few black belts together and try this exercise.
 

Archtkd

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No ,not at the test. Although thats exactly what a friend of mine had to do to test for 1st dan in zendokai. He was black and blue the next day, he sparred heaps of black belts, full contact, basically anything goes. Then when he was about to collapse they sent out attackers with baseball bats, he couldnt walk for two days after his test. They also had to do 100 push ups, 100 sit ups and 100 squats before they were even allowed on the grading floor. It freaked me out watching that, it made my 1st dan test look like a walk in the park:)

Why stop with baseball bats? How about bull whips, knifes, rocks, maybe even a gun duel in the dojang. Seriously, though, why does anyone really think that's what a Taekwondo test should be? What is that test supposed to prove?
 
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IcemanSK

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Why stop with baseball bats? How about bull whips, knifes, rocks, maybe even a gun duel in the dojang. Seriously, though, why does anyone really think that's what a Taekwondo test should be? What is that test supposed to prove?


That was reasoning for my first question. One's philosophy of a test says a lot about your last question.
 

Daniel Sullivan

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A lot of folks here have talked about what we don't like in a 1st Dan test (or what shouldn't happen). Let's talk about what should be in a 1st Dan exam.

What do you consider to be the reason for the test? (What do you want to accomplish in the test?) This says a lot about the test we have.

How long is your test & why?

What does your test consist of?

Written work required?

A big physical test (3-5 mile run? Some other item?)

Other skill (weapons? writing Hangul? something else?)

Is there anything that you do that you're thinking of eliminating in your current test? Adding?
Different masters place value on different things and that is reflected in their test, the method of their test, and whether or not it actually is a formal "test."

At KMA, the test is very physical and very demanding. Our KJN is less concerned with technical precision than he is with indomitable spirit. He always says, "I want to see your mind." By that he means that he wants to see the non physical elements of performing taekwondo present in a very physical test. When you are physically depleted, he wants to see you still striving and trying.

His ildan tests begin with the recital of an essay on a topic of his his choosing. Then he has the candidates do a full warm up, demonstrate techniques, various drills, and then do 100 roundhouse kicks and 100 punches. At my test, because he used to teach self defense technques culled from hapkido, at this point, the candidates had to perform the hoshinsul that was part of the class (defenses against various grabs). Then he has the candidates perform the tageuk pumse iljang to paljang, and then breaking; three breaks, his call.

After that, the candidates put on their hogu and spar four or five students (usually yudanja), each match timed to two minutes.

The whole test takes roughly and hour and a half to two hours.

Do your best, even if it isn't perfect, and show spirit through the course of the test and he's happy.

Perform technically well, but mail it in and show poor spirit or attitude, and he's not happy.

Because he has weapons training after black belt, tests subsequent to first dan have candidates tesing on their weapon forms in addition.

Daniel
 

ralphmcpherson

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Why stop with baseball bats? How about bull whips, knifes, rocks, maybe even a gun duel in the dojang. Seriously, though, why does anyone really think that's what a Taekwondo test should be? What is that test supposed to prove?
I dont think anybody thinks thats what a tkd test should be. I certainly wouldnt train somewhere that does that. Zendokai on the other hand......
 
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