Monday, 30 January 2012

Poomsae Performance (Competition style)

The year 2006 was a special year for Taekwondo competition. Up untill then the only way to compete in a world championship in WTF/Kukki style Taekwondo was through sparring. But in 2006 the very first Poomsae World Championships was held in Seoul, and now you could compete not only in sparring in a global scale but also in Poomsae.

Up until that point in history most masters were totally free in how to teach Poomsae around the world, and there was as many variations in Poomsae performance as there were people. One thing that was decided for the world championship was that there needed to be one and only one standard or "true form" to be followed so everyone could be judged on the same basis. This lead to a reprint of Kukkiwond textbook as well as a whole host of other books on Poomsae so this new "standard" could be taught.

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Poomsae and the math book. My attempt at an analogy

As the readers of this blog will know by know I really like Poomsae. Not only for their "form" (what you see) but also very much because of their "combative content". I firmly believe that Poomsae was the pioneers of Taekwondo`s way of preserving combat strategy by stringing different "examples" together into a mnemonic. I see them as "Taekwondo Textbook".

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

New years resolution problems?

Happy new year 2012
Hi and happy new year everyone:-) Yes we are already come to the middle of January, and I guess many of the readers have made themselves some kind of new year resolution. Many wants to do more excercise, be kinder to their spouses (or husbands;-), and then there is the other kind of new years resolution. Quitting a bad habbit. There are suprisingly many people who starts each new year trying to quit something. It is difficult to kill a habbit and it is partiqulary difficult to stop a "nice" bad habbit (something that feels good but is bad for you really). I came accross a really good guide that would help the last group, and this is a little out of my usual writing, but maybe this will benifit more people than my usual target group. Note that the guide is not my own, but it is well written and extremly well researched.

Thursday, 12 January 2012

Religion and Taekwondo

This is a little special post. You see there is one problem that I think should be adressed. I once had a girl watching one of my training sessions at the Dojang I study (and teach). She seemed very interested in Taekwondo so I offered her one week of free lessons to see if she liked the training. "No I cant" she said. "My mother is very religious so she would never let me start practising Taekwondo".  I was stunned. After a short while I asked her why Taekwondo would be unsuitable for christians. She said it was too much budhism and taoism in the Taekwondo and her mother was afraid that it would be a bad influence in her pure christian belief. But is it really any pagan or budhism or Taoism in Taekwondo? Are all people who practise Taekwondo bad (insert your religious belief here) or are we all pagans?

Friday, 6 January 2012

The role of kicks in Poomsae

Writing the post about the evolution of Koryo Poomsae focusing on the height of the double sidekicks in the beginning of the form got me thinking of writing about kicks in Poomsae in general. You see kicking in Taekwondo serves very different roles in Olympic sparring, Poomsae and self defense. This has lead to a great number of misconceptions about the role of kicks in Poomsae and this is a great hinderance for finding out the combative value of Poomsae movements.

Sunday, 1 January 2012

The evolution of Koryo Poomsae; the double side kicks 1986-2010

Not long ago (I wrote this in october 2011) I was teaching Poomsae as part of my class and one of the students told me I did Koryo Poomsae wrong. The double side kicks in the beginning was according to him meant to be targeted to the oponents knee and face, while I have always targeted the knee and midsection. I remember discussing this frequently on martial arts internet forums, as well as with my fellow students at the time I learned the Poomsae. Over the years I have collected many books on how to perform Poomsae and after the training session was finished I went home and looked up Koryo Poomsae in all the books I could find. The conclusion was simple; after just a few minutes of reading it was clear that an evolution had occured since the form was released in the 70s until now.