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#181719 - 08/27/05 04:50 PM How I came here.
Sorin Offline
Member

Registered: 08/27/05
Posts: 131
Loc: Oxford, MS
Hello all. Just joined the board and decided I might as well post a little background story about some of my experiences with the arts for my first post.

I've always loved watching martial arts, ever since I was little. I started my Martial arts career at the age of 10. I lived in a little town of about 5000 and a new Tae Kwon do dojo had opened up. So, naturally I nagged my parents to let me go, which in the end they did. I don't remember much about the place, aside from the fact that it did cost a lot of money or so my mom likes to remind me. I am sure however that it was neither a WTF or ITF school. I managed to make it to the third belt in this 12-14 belt system, which was orange. We didn't really do much in the class, a few punches and kicks and practice the forms. Then we had to move and I left the school forever. From what I know now, I strongly suspect this of being a McDojo.

It was not until I went to college that I was able to start martial arts classes again. It's a small community college and I just happened to notice TKD in the class catalog. I thought back to the days of my old classes almost 9 years before and said, "Hey! Why not join it for a PE and check it out. I still love watching martial arts movies." I remembered my old classes and envisioned what these would be like. Well, I definitely couldn't have been more wrong. After a short introduction the teacher set us off to run 10 laps around the basketball court(our practices were inside the college gym). After this, we had to run 10 bleachers(hmm, these things were freaking high, a good guess would be the quivalent of 3-4 stories{up and down would be 1 bleacher}). After about number 5, my legs were basically mush. After this we did some nice pushups, crunches, squat front kicks, and a few other conditioning drills. We got a 5 min water/bathroom break after this where I promptly went to the bathroom and willed myself not the throw up. Then I sat down on the floor and had to make the decision of whether or not to stick with it or not. Amist the gagging and coughing I decided to stay. Hey, I didn't quit basketball when the coach decided it would be better to play the guys who might not be as good, but who's parents at least donated a nice chunk of change to the school. I didn't drop any college classes because the teacher seemed like a tyrant or it seemed to difficult, so I wasn't going to drop this either. My body was constantly sore for about 3 weeks after this first class. I stayed and worked my butt off though, especially after getting it handed to me several times from some of the black belts. The normal classes usually consisted of the normal workout to start, followed by any number of self-defense exercises(hapkido, throws, locks, kick/punch combos) or whatever the instructor thought that we might be able to use in a real situation. We also did a good deal of boxing exercises, sparring, and forms. Sometimes we'd have a guest instuctor of something, like ninjutsu, or ju-jitsu come and do some stuff with the class. The actual federation that the school is under is called NTFA. I was told once by one of the higher ranks that the actual style of TKD is called MudoKwan(sp?), but I'm not completely sure if that's true, seeing as most of are forms are based on the ITF versions. Anyway, I stuck with it the two years I was there and managed to get my first degree black belt right before I graduated(it was only a two year school). Two years may be a little fast from what I've read, but the only reason I moved up so fast was the fact that the teacher allowed me to test between official testings. He said I would be graded much harder though. I sweated my way through it all though and made some really good friends too. I then bid farwell to my friends and instructor as I set off toward a slightly larger university and to finish my computer science degree. I'm still able to go back during summers and go back to help judge any belt testings that they have though.

When I got there I decided to try a new art they had on the schedule, Isshinryu Karate. A combination of Goju-ryu and Shojo-ryu karate. The system wasn't too incredibly different really. A few techniques were done slightly differently here and there. The atmosphere was less laid back and much more rigid then my old class though. I guess you could say it was more traditional. The main difference though was what exactly we did in the class. We started off with some warm-ups, though they were incredibly light compared to my old TKD class. And then, we spent one and a half hours doing the 3-5 movements of our form, that the instructor showed us, over and over again. This really annoyed the crap out of me. I suppose I was too used to being shown the full form a few times and then just practicing the whole thing. If that wasn't enough there were quite a few other irksome things about the class that drove me nuts. There was absolutely no sparring and very little partner training of some of the techniques we worked on in the warmups and the teacher seemed to enjoy talking down about other arts. He definitely came across as someone who believed his art is the only one worth studying. My personal opinion is that you can find many useful things in many different arts. I do have to give him credit on his enthusiasm and knowledge of the history of the art though. There was another black belt helping the instructor teach. This guy was in college like me. He was likeable enough guy, although he was definitely quite arrogant and cocky, or at least that's the way he came across to me and a few others I knew. I asked this guy to spar once outside of class, since I was going to be entering a tournament with my old classmates and he had often said that he had enough trophies from the tournaments he'd entered to fill up most of his house. I asked him for some pointers since I have only entered a few tournaments(that really wasn't pushed too much at my school). He agreed and we met once afternoon in the same place we held class. After a few minutes of light sparring and some critique, I decided we decided to go a little harder. I quickly feinted a left front kick and then followed by a jump right round kick. This did exactly what I had intended it to do and he jumped right into my right foot. Unfortunately the fight ended there. The pad had poked him in the eye and he couldn't continue. I didn't mind too much, though it wasn't as helpful of a session as I had hoped. The next class however, the Teacher yelled at me for what happened. He said that when he was a student he would of never thought of hitting one of his teachers in the head. I didn't really want to talk back, but I did say that if he had entered the tournament and fought against me, Instructor or not, I would hit him, since the alternative would be to let him win(which either of us would get anything out of that). Well the class didn't go so well from there. It became less and less fun for me and after the end of the semester I decided not to return, but to instead spend my time studying for school and training on my own. (My opinion is class does not make you great, it only shows you the way, you have to do all the work yourself.) I did get some good things out of the class though.

Insight into another style, and of course I did learn to analyze forms a great deal better. Well, now I've graduated from there and I'm in Graduate School. There is a TKD school here, but the federation is KTF or WTF, I'm not sure. From what I saw and understand, most of the training is geared toward sport and tournaments. I've talked to some of the people and I would come in as a white belt, which I don't mind too much. It is a slightly different system and a different teacher. I do see a problem with not being able to punch to the face during sparring though. I'm so used to it, and hardly any of the students raise their hands to defend themselves. They just kick each other in the chest protectors. I think I might just attempt to punch them in the face out of instinct, but I think I'll try it anyways. Maybe bring a friend or two with me. You never know what you can get out of something by just watching, you need to participate. Well, that's where I am now. It's been about 5 years since I started and I'm still going strong. If anyone has any questions or comments just shout them. If I got something wrong somewhere then let me know. I don't won't to be reciting incorrect information.

Sorin(Scott M.)

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#181720 - 08/28/05 12:41 AM Re: How I came here. [Re: Sorin]
hugo Offline
Elvis Sharkey

Registered: 08/03/05
Posts: 134
Loc: I am not going to specify that...
I think you did well. No problems with that. Sounds like your Sensei was being a dick though. Instead of practicing on your own try going to another club.
_________________________
I'm starting afresh.

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#181721 - 08/28/05 05:34 AM Re: How I came here. [Re: Sorin]
ButterflyPalm Offline
Enigma

Registered: 08/26/04
Posts: 2637
Loc: Malaysia
You may not believe this, but I actually read your post twice and still could not find -- 'How you came here?'
_________________________
I'll rather be happy than right, anytime.

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#181722 - 08/28/05 12:39 PM Re: How I came here. [Re: ButterflyPalm]
Sorin Offline
Member

Registered: 08/27/05
Posts: 131
Loc: Oxford, MS
Haha Well, How I came here refers more to the martial arts that brought me to a forum like this and less about the links. But if you really want to know, I just typed martial arts forum in google, made it to the second page, and clicked on the second link.

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#181723 - 08/28/05 03:18 PM Re: How I came here. [Re: Sorin]
tkd_high_green Offline
Veteran

Registered: 05/16/05
Posts: 1031
Loc: Vermont
Quote:

And then, we spent one and a half hours doing the 3-5 movements of our form, that the instructor showed us, over and over again.




This line in your post caught my attention. At my school, classes are offered every week night, although Tuesdays and Thursdays tend to be less attended than the other nights. This particular tuesday, it was just myself and another red belt who showed up for class and it turned into a paterns class much like the one you described above. Normally when we have a patterns class, it will consist of running through all of our patterns, however on this particular night, we just did the first 4 moves of our pattern over and over again, working on generating sufficient power, deep stances, until he was happy with it and we moved onto the next four moves in our pattern. By the time class was over, my legs were shaking and I wasn't sure I'd be able to even make it to my car. However, it must have made a difference, because I had several people complement me on my pattern the next night.

Laura

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#181724 - 08/28/05 07:43 PM Re: How I came here. [Re: tkd_high_green]
Sorin Offline
Member

Registered: 08/27/05
Posts: 131
Loc: Oxford, MS
Yeah, I can understand why trying to perfect just a few moves at a time can really help your forms/kata. As I said, It wasn't really something I was used to though. This class definitely did help out my forms and my ability to analyze others. This comes particularly in handy when I'm judging a belt testing.

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#181725 - 08/28/05 10:16 PM Re: How I came here. [Re: Sorin]
ButterflyPalm Offline
Enigma

Registered: 08/26/04
Posts: 2637
Loc: Malaysia
Quote:

:D Haha Well, How I came here refers more to the martial arts that brought me to a forum like this and less about the links. But if you really want to know, I just typed martial arts forum in google, made it to the second page, and clicked on the second link.





Thanks, I was having sleepless nights over this.
_________________________
I'll rather be happy than right, anytime.

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#181726 - 08/28/05 10:20 PM Re: How I came here. [Re: tkd_high_green]
ButterflyPalm Offline
Enigma

Registered: 08/26/04
Posts: 2637
Loc: Malaysia
Quote:

Quote:

we just did the first 4 moves of our pattern over and over again, working on generating sufficient power, deep stances, until he was happy with it and we moved onto the next four moves in our pattern. By the time class was over, my legs were shaking and I wasn't sure I'd be able to even make it to my car. However, it must have made a difference, because I had several people complement me on my pattern the next night.
Laura





You have just been introduced to "Kung Fu"
_________________________
I'll rather be happy than right, anytime.

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#181727 - 09/12/05 10:41 PM Re: How I came here. *DELETED* [Re: Sorin]
mooimacow Offline
Member

Registered: 09/12/05
Posts: 29
Post deleted by Victor Smith

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#181728 - 09/14/05 09:21 PM Re: How I came here. [Re: Sorin]
Tino Offline
Member

Registered: 04/17/05
Posts: 106
Loc: USA
Welcome to the forums Sorin.I also found this forum through google.
_________________________
Tino

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