Why so much pading?

Gnarlie

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I dunno if it makes me a wuss, but with the kind of people who come to spar with us, that padding is 100% necessary to prevent injury.

For beginners, it stops them busting their foot on my forearms or elbows, or clashing shins with me when they fail to look what I am doing before they kick.

For more advanced visitors, it prevents them breaking my ribs. Most of the time. Some of these younger guys kick really, really hard - not something I would personally want to withstand without appropriate protective gear.

I'm sure I am not the only person here who has trained wearing 2 or more layers of chest protector, depending on the drill it's just necessary.
 

RTKDCMB

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I have yet to see a TKD school with the same caliber of martial artist, simply due to the fact that we are attracting "different" people. We are attracting the people who are looking for something a little "easier."
Maybe you're just not looking in the right places.
 

dancingalone

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I'm sure I am not the only person here who has trained wearing 2 or more layers of chest protector, depending on the drill it's just necessary.

Agreed, it is necessary. Those hogu drills can get intense when two partners mutually agree to up the ante, so to speak. It happens even in my dojang, and I hardly train Olympic aspirants.
 

WaterGal

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Yeah, maybe it makes me a "wuss", but I'd rather wear a bunch of padding than break my foot or arm. Last time I sparred an adult without shin pads was 5 months ago, and I took an elbow to the shin so hard that I still have a bruise. Even with pads, I've had a broken toe, sprained thumb, and of course lots of bruises on my thighs/upper arms/hips; seen people get broken arms and concussions at tournaments.

And yeah, it's martial arts, that stuff happens now and then, that's okay. Part of martial arts is learning to take a hit. But at the same time, safety is important. If I'm risking a broken arm in every sparring match, I'm not going to want to spar 6-8 rounds multiple times a week.
 

Gnarlie

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Yeah, maybe it makes me a "wuss", but I'd rather wear a bunch of padding than break my foot or arm. Last time I sparred an adult without shin pads was 5 months ago, and I took an elbow to the shin so hard that I still have a bruise. Even with pads, I've had a broken toe, sprained thumb, and of course lots of bruises on my thighs/upper arms/hips; seen people get broken arms and concussions at tournaments.

And yeah, it's martial arts, that stuff happens now and then, that's okay. Part of martial arts is learning to take a hit. But at the same time, safety is important. If I'm risking a broken arm in every sparring match, I'm not going to want to spar 6-8 rounds multiple times a week.
I agree. I train often, and it's finding a balance between being a 'tough' guy and being able to sustain a reasonable level of training in the long term.
 

hoshin1600

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i am not a TKD guy but i did some training with an old timer who studied in the 60"s and we did not wear anything but a cup. however when i opened my own MA school in 1999 my insurance policy clearly stated that there was not to be any full contact and ALL protective equipment SHALL be worn or no claims would be paid. i used to have the students run laps around the training area and once a 7 y/o tripped and almost fell. all i could think of was being sued...why where they running? why wasnt the floor covered with rubber protective padding? i could see all the angles a lawyer would bring up to prove my negligence and liability. like it or not in the USA we live in a sue happy culture. one time back in the 80's a student was slow speed sparring and got poked in the eye by accident. he was fine but threatened to sue the school.
as i write this i am waiting to see if i am being sued by a tenant of a rental property i own because the older women in this bad winter fell down walking to her car. while they are responsible for snow and ice removal her son called me saying "there were medical expenses that her health insurance didnt cover and "someone HAS to pay for it". its the world we live in. if a MT school allows full contact sparring without equipment its possible their insurance rates are through the roof or they just choose to live dangerously and hope nothing happens.
 

Thousand Kicks

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I can only speak for my school, but when my instructor talks to potential students he always says that we are studing a martial art and contact is part of it. While we don't intend to hurt people it happens.

Putting on a hogu should not mean it's time to go full force. In partner drills where you know you're taking and giving contact, control should always be used. I will conceed that the hogu let's you make more/harder contact we shouldn't just tee off on each other unless it is mutually agreed upon.

Back to the OP. In every other striking style I have studied; when it's time to spar, it's time to pad up. I don't think putting on gear makes you a wuss, it just means you're trying to get the most out of what you're doing. Training like a wuss makes you a wuss
 

Gwai Lo Dan

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Putting on a hogu should not mean it's time to go full force. In partner drills where you know you're taking and giving contact, control should always be used. I will conceed that the hogu let's you make more/harder contact we shouldn't just tee off on each other unless it is mutually agreed upon.

A green belt had told me that when he got his sparring equipment, he thought it was like armour, and did a full power back kick on his friend who he had convinced to put on the hogu. Seeing his friend bent in pain and over sucking wind made him realise that it only helps.....you still need to control the power of the kicks.
 

Flash Bang

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I remember that when I started sparring, I was squishy and had little control over my power. In that case, pads were needed to help keep me and the others from murdering each other in the ring. Even with padding, I remember kicking someone so hard in my first match that they had to forfeit. These days, now that its been almost 4 years since that first match, I rarely use padding in my regular classes. It benefits me more to take the full contact with my classmates and Master, but I can see why a younger child or first-time fighter might need some padding. I say that use it if you want to or need to wear padding, good! I feel that padding is a little restricting and heavy. Should you need to fight for your life, you wont have time to gear up, but, without the padding its easier to move and you tend to move more quickly. Hopefully that will account for the lack of armor.
 

skribs

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Every once in a while I wish we didn't have to use the pads, but most of the time I'm glad for them. You can still take quite a hit with the pads on, you're just less likely to get injured.

I think the pads actually help set the bar higher. Anyone can swing an arm or a leg and make it hurt the other person, but to make them feel it through the pads takes more precision and power.
 

Drose427

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One thing that important to note that most people whos never sparred Kukki TKD dont realize is the fact that these guys are padded like the michelin man and still break each others ribs. They still leave massive bruises all over each other!

The idea that TKD guys dont kick hard is a false opinion held by those who have never had the pleasure to get kicked by them
 

Balrog

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Why tkdoings have to use su much pading or full coverage with safety gear equipment? Are we a bunch of sissies? Back in mid.80's we sparr inside dojang using nothing but maybe just the shin pads or a cup but that's all, yes we use the hogu but only in competition.
Sadly, it's a result of lawyers and insurance companies. IMNSHO, the level of skill in sparring has decreased because of all the protection. It has hurt us overall, not helped us.

Back in the day when it was mouthpiece and cup, you really learned to keep your guard up and protect your head. These days, I see people sparring with their hands down by their butts. Why? Your butt is already padded, you don't need to protect it like you do your head.
 

Tiger-eye

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I train in an ITF organization (UITF to be exact). Color belts and kids wear head gear, mouth piece, hand gear, and foot gear (and cups for guys). Black belts have less requirements. The head instructor suggests no head gear for adult black belts (took some time to get used to but I sure protect my head better). Personally, in a typical class where sparring isn't the focus- my Monday and Wednesday class- I'll pop in a mouthpiece and spar. I've got enough control to not hurt my opponents while maintaining speed. On Saturday however, I go to a only sparring class. So I wear mouth piece, hand gear and foot gear. Many others wear shin pads but I'd prefer to condition mine.
 

Jaeimseu

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Sadly, it's a result of lawyers and insurance companies. IMNSHO, the level of skill in sparring has decreased because of all the protection. It has hurt us overall, not helped us.

Back in the day when it was mouthpiece and cup, you really learned to keep your guard up and protect your head. These days, I see people sparring with their hands down by their butts. Why? Your butt is already padded, you don't need to protect it like you do your head.
Fair enough, but the hand position has nothing to do with padding. It's all about the rules and style of the game.
 

Rough Rider

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I like the way the ITF does it. Less gear, but no full contact. Maybe we WTF folks will see some changes with all of the "kissing and making up" that's going on these days between the organizations. I just hope it doesn't go the other way.
 

TrueJim

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I like the way the ITF does it. Less gear, but no full contact.

Hi Chesapeake! Greetings from NoVA.

I originally trained (many, many years ago) in a light-contact style. Now that I'm doing the full-contact, padded version, I actually like this version better. Personally, I think it's building better muscle-memory for my kicks. I've always had really good kick precision, but my power has always been lacking. For what it's worth, I'm finding that doing both targets and sparring with power is (slowly) helping me improve my power. That could just be me though.
 

Laplace_demon

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So how come guys who train in muay thai can train with hard contact and minimal gear and still get to work in the morning, yet people in other styles cant....

Exactly. Muay Thai and Kickboxing are evidently still in business and producing fine fighters. The argument from injury is weak. Needless to say, 8 out of 10 guys in your average TKD class would get slaughtered in a fight against a trained kickboxer. I wouldn't, though I would have to adjust.
 

Gnarlie

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Exactly. Muay Thai and Kickboxing are evidently still in business and producing fine fighters. The argument from injury is weak. Needless to say, 8 out of 10 guys in your average TKD class would get slaughtered in a fight against a trained kickboxer. I wouldn't, though I would have to adjust.
And 83.2% of statistics are made up on the spot.
 

TrueJim

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I think the Mutai fighters from Babylon 5 are the toughest though.

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