Friday, 23 October 2015

Guest Post: The Secret to Winning All Your Fights...with Taegeuk Il Jang!

Intro by Traditional Taekwondo Ramblings:

Josh has a great blog at which I full heartidly support and

recommend that you check out. Especially if you like my blog because me and Josh have many similar thoughts yet different enough that we also disagree on stuff. He has a bunch of interesting articles on his blog and is one of the few people on the world wide web that actually writes indepth articles on Kukki Taekwondo! Among all the blogs that pay lip service to Taekwondo being a martial art and not just a sport Josh`s blog is an oasis in the desert. That he now has written a guest post exclusively for Traditional Taekwondo Ramblings is a great honor for me and it is like all his usual blog articles a thought provocing read that I am sure many will apreciate. The post below is not going to be posted anywhere else so this is truly a special post to have here:-) Below is how Josh view his relationship with Taegeuk Il Jang :-)

The Secret to Winning All Your Fights...with Taegeuk Il Jang!

Ludicrous, you say.

How could practicing the most basic lame form ever, make you a sparring beast?
Like Orjan I must admit to a rather passionate love affair with Taegeuk Il Jang. I practice it so much in comparison to the other poomsae that my relationship with her seems almost entirely monogamous.

And let me get one thing straight...I won't suffer your insult to her honor! There is not one lame move in her composition!
Oh you take it back? And you want to know what wonderful secrets lie waiting for you inside her parts?
Well then, all is forgiven.
So where was I?
Ah, yes. Taegeuk Il Jang making you a monster on the mats.
When you look at her you see a low block and a front kick and face block. Not very sexy.
When I look at her I see depth. I see a deceptively slight frame that, once you look further, reveals a voluptuous figure of principles just begging to be explored.
Definitely sexy.

It's true. Understanding poomsae is complicated.
You know what they say--behind every great man there's a great poomsae. Or something like that.
At any rate, one of those principles is to strike back immediately. Not just strike back, but take

"Okay, so what? I already know that. How does it help me get better at sparring?"
Take a given sequence. Low block, step, punch. Or inside block, step, punch. Analyze it. Think: against what can I most practically apply this?
"Alright, hold up," you say. "That's nothing new. You're just applying poomsae. I've already analyzed and applied Taegeuk Il Jang."

I'm counting on that, smarty pants. I haven't finished yet.
I'm not trying to tell you how to apply the individual moves of your poomsae. Orjan does a well enough sharing applications for the both of us.
I'm here to make you take those principles. And not apply the moves.
I want you to apply your poomsae's principles.
So instead of using the moves of poomsae to come up with applications...we're going to use the principles of poomsae to develop drills.

So remember what I said about Il Jang? Block, strike back, take ground.
You can use Il Jang moves, or you can use pal Jang moves -- doesn't matter. Pick a block, pick a counter, and pick a mechanism by which to gain ground on your opponent.
Now, here comes the secret sauce.
Have an opponent come at you with a limited range of attacks. Maybe just two kicks, maybe just two punches, whatever.

The Secret is, he has to try to get past your defense. No script, no rhythm. Just pure effort.
Your job is to limit yourself to the appropriate block, and an immediate counter strike and entry.
You're going to suck at first. Thankfully, Taegeuk Il Jang is a forgiving mistress. Hang in there.
After a few good hours of this practice, you'll be a monster at that particular scenario. Pick another skill you want to improve. Rinse and repeat.

This type of training is referred to as "alive." It's similar to a real fight in that you can't really anticipate what your opponent is going to do to thwart you.
This process of trial and error is how the mind and body improve. It's how elite athletes train, and it's how elite fighters train.

So pay close attention to the principles in your poomsae. Turn them into a template that can be applied to many attacks. Plug in what techniques you want to work on. Set limits on you and your


Then let loose.

If you remember one thing from this post, let it be this.
Learn to apply the principles in your poomsae. Accomplish this by turning them into live drills.

Now work up your courage. Taegeuk Il Jang is kind of into you, but you've got to get to know her before she can rock your world.

Go ask her out!

If you enjoyed this post and want to read more of his work please follow this link: to his blog and enjoy :-)

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