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#328248 - 03/14/07 05:00 AM Re: Should they re-invent their forms [Re: Shonuff]
trevek Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/15/05
Posts: 3337
Loc: Poland
Hi Shonuff,

yes, tuls are Chang Hon/ITF.

What I was trying to say was that even at the lower-belt level many of the moves are brought into the step-sparring sequences. Obviously/hopefully the practitioner will then bring these into their 1-step.

So things like clinch-and-knee, elbow-strikes, kick-to-knee, footwork from the lower grade patterns are already being trained in both through patterns and step-sparring.

Of course, if you're doing competition based sparring, even CH/ITF style (which allows head punches etc) there are some techniques, like knees and elbows, which won't be used.
See how well I block your punches with my jaw!!

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#328249 - 03/14/07 06:40 AM Re: Should they re-invent their forms [Re: trevek]
Leo_E_49 Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 02/24/05
Posts: 4117
Loc: California
I rather like the Taegeuks. They've got a good progression for a beginner and gradually involve them in more complex footwork and techniques. They also contain a decent selection of techniques which can form a solid basis for a beginner in TKD, even some techniques and applications which are valuable at an advanced level. I see no reason to change them.
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#328250 - 03/14/07 11:44 AM Re: Should they re-invent their forms [Re: GriffyGriff]
Paulol Offline

Registered: 05/11/05
Posts: 112

I personally do not think that the Chang Hon TKD Tuls should be altered. They have been diluted and obscured enough as it is. Quite a few stances / postures and movements can be seen not only in Shotokan Patterns, but also in many KungFu styles, including Wing Chun. Also what are taught as blocks are in fact strikes or breaks.

hehe you don't have to tell me that! but what i meant by the comment was that if tkd claims to be a distinct ma then they should have made bigger efforts to show the distinction in there forms instead of creating the mishmash that resulted from the atempt to break away from shotokan.

I think the problem with Tuls lie in our perception of what a Tul really is.
We look at the whole as if we were being attacked in a poorly choreographed Martial Arts movie. This makes us feel that what we are performing are not only outdated, but in most cases almost suicidal movement sequences.

Treat each Tul as a phrase book. Look at the movements in short sequences.
Think about the blocks/punches in relation to the stance that there are in and the stance that they came from. Look at other traditional styles and how they do their patterns. Ask them for their movement explanations.

There is so much you can learn from these Tuls, if you donít throw them away.
We used to have a guy called Sonjin (I think). He had a great approach to Tuls.

i have spent most of the 20 years i've trained in tkd looking at this. but it took me to looking at the original forms in shotokan and okinawan arts to realise the full potential!! i now train in 5 heian katas and naihanchi as well as looking at obscure movements in chang hon forms.

check out to see what i do

#328251 - 03/14/07 12:11 PM Re: Should they re-invent their forms [Re: Shonuff]
ITFunity Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/15/06
Posts: 2053

I don't know the tuls, are they ITF?

TUL is the Korean term used to described Patterns. Many Koreans still use the term Hyung which translates closer to form. However, Tul is closer to pattern. As what you are doing when performing Tuls is creating a pattern of movements, much like a gym nastics floor routine. Now a gymnasist can have good form, but do a poor floor routine, much like a Taekwon-Doin can have generally good form, but can perform a pattern poorly.
So Tul is merely a better term to describe what someone is doing. I hope this helps.

#328252 - 03/14/07 12:36 PM Re: Should they re-invent their forms [Re: GriffyGriff]
oldcoach Offline

Registered: 07/19/06
Posts: 130

We look at the whole as if we were being attacked in a poorly choreographed Martial Arts movie.

#328253 - 03/14/07 01:16 PM Re: Should they re-invent their forms [Re: ITFunity]
Shonuff Offline

Registered: 11/03/04
Posts: 604
Loc: London, UK
It helps very much, my dojang didnt use much Korean although I am familiar with the terms Hyung and Poomse.

Here are some modern Karate kata that reflect the kind of thing I was thinking of.

As you can see these are far less ambiguous as to their application and teach techniques and movements that are directly applicable to combat (assuming you are competent to use high kicks in real combat). Personally I think pooling the years of hapkido, millitary taekwondo and sport skills into a set of forms like this would be an awesome addition to the art. Especially if they got some senior karateka to help them structure the forms in order to layer applications and principles into the movements.

Anyway, I won't bang on about it if the concensus is that they should stay as is so be it. The more voices though the better the debate, so if anyone else has a view lets hear it!
It's Shotokan not Shoto-can't!!!

#328254 - 03/14/07 01:47 PM Re: Should they re-invent their forms [Re: Shonuff]
Dereck Offline

Registered: 10/04/04
Posts: 10416
Loc: Great White North

What I was really refering to is the way modern tkd fights in relation to how the forms say it should be done. New forms could make use of the highly functional upright side on fighting stances greater use of kicks and boxing style hand work that has become more prevalent, as opposed to heavy use of deep stances which retard kicking and general movement (two of the most important parts of tkd as I was taught it) and old style heavy hand work (reverse punches, chopping attacks etc).

This paragraph struck me and wanted to comment about it. Why must everything be in the patterns? Does TKD and other martial arts get defined by the patterns/forms they do? I think not and only see the patterns as an extension of the whole program and a means to train techniques repeatedly in a sequence by one's self. Anything substantial to learn for fighting you learn by .... fighting. If you think that you are going to learn how to be a better TKD'ist I can tell you now that you are not going to learn it from patterns. You are not going to learn it by breaking boards. You are not going to learn it by one-steps, etc. All of these most certainly will help overall but you have to have application of the techniques against resisting partners, heavy bags, focus mitts, slammer shields, etc.

You learn the basics and then you apply them. Constant application of these techniques will make you a better fighter if that is what you chose to be. Patterns will contain many of these techniques and are a way of practicing them on your own, but I don't think a system should be based on the pattern to teach you all that you need. If you do then you are sadly mistaken and will come out on the short end of the stick each and every time.

I can tell you for myself, if patterns were the only things I would have been gone a long time ago. If the patterns were done away with all together that wouldn't hurt my feelings as I prefer working techniques through application with resistance. I feel only then can you truly understand what you are doing.

#328255 - 03/14/07 04:47 PM Re: Should they re-invent their forms [Re: Dereck]
Paulol Offline

Registered: 05/11/05
Posts: 112
how many times have masters told us that all we need to know about our art is in the patterns we have in the syllabus!!

in tkd's case this does not happen until you get to higher forms with the lower grade patterns being re-jigged versions of shotokan. now if tkd really wanted to be distinctive as they clim to be then they would reflect this in the lower forms as well as the higher ones.

i think that the wtf forms do a better job of this. but then the chang hon forms are eaiser to relate back to karate katas for reference in bunkai training.

#328256 - 03/14/07 04:50 PM Re: Should they re-invent their forms [Re: Dereck]
Shonuff Offline

Registered: 11/03/04
Posts: 604
Loc: London, UK
Dereck, you are absolutely right, fighting is improved by fighting. However you are also right that you need to build up your abilities through training other skills.

My point was not that by improving the forms taekwondo fighters the world over would miraculously improve. Forms encapsulate a style. That is their purpose. That is not how it is for taekwondo because the art was created over the years following the creation of the patterns. It should have been the other way around so that the patterns reflect the art.
The result currently is that Taekwondo fighters practice basic movements that they dont use in any meaningful way for combat. They use strategies that are nothing like what occurs in the patterns and 1-step sparring that bares no resemblance to anything.

Taekwondo is a unique martial art and it's practitioners should fight in a unique manner based on the strategies and movements of the art.
What I am proposing is that those strategies and movements that are currently in use are cataloged and recorded in a new set of forms. Practice of forms would then re-inforce both the movements and strategies of Taekwondo instead of being a dance exercise that is unrelated to anything as is the current situation IMO.

You said that you will not be able to become a better tkdist from studying the patterns. Well you should be able to. That is their purpose. You said that one learns the basics and then applies them. The role forms are supposed to play is as a guide to how you apply the basics as well as a catalogue of the basic (and non basic) movements themselves. It follows then that the two person drills you develop to isolate skill sets for development will be derived from the forms. Apply the techniques of the patterns in drills against a willing partner to develop technique, then against a resisting partner to develop adaptability, then in free fighting to hone and amalgamate the skills.

From here you can see that it is not purely changing the movements and names of the patterns that I am proposing, but recataloging all the effactive fighting knowledge gained in the 50 plus years of taekwondo's history. The single most scientific kicking art in the world does not have a form that shows the strategies for use of all it's kicks. No form that shows how to best use feet with hands or with grappling/locking or anything.

The forms should follow the art and showcase what it actually is. I just propose that this becomes the case.
It's Shotokan not Shoto-can't!!!

#328257 - 03/15/07 11:15 AM Re: Should they re-invent their forms [Re: Shonuff]
TeK9 Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 12/22/05
Posts: 2257
Loc: Northern California, USA
Yea I'm with you, they should just get rid of forms all together. there are better ways to practice and learn the fundamentals, forms are no longer a necessity. If anything forms should come from within the students own imaginations as they progress through MA, they develop their own exercise and physical meditative way to practice. Many people like to equate forms to shadow sparring but this is just not the case, shadow sparring is down the way a person would fight, forms on the other hand does not represent fighting nor does it completely represent self defense techniques in the proper context.

This formalized way of practicing is just an outdated method of practicing, if the techniques done in forms must be altered in some way to fit a self defense application then the form is flawed.

Furthermore all styles of TKD forms do not contain the entire arsenal of Taekwondo techniques. Why invest so much of your time in performing incomplete patterns when they must be altered for actual application.

Because TKD is an art it does not mean that a practtioner must practice a ritualized set of patterns especially when the forms have no real meaning and usefulness. As I stated before why not let the forms come within the practitioner. Allowing TKD to be more intuitive for the practitioner. Expressing your own art from within.

Free flowing drills and repetition is the way to go, timing and sensitivity drills should be applied. Free flowing footwork over rigid stances. Spontaneous action over timed reaction. Enough of the block + punch + kick...why not just punch on instinct.

Another thing, we must not dilute TKD as just your adverage kick boxing style. TKD is an asian art therefore it has punches and strikes from multiple angles and numerous tools. We do not neccesarily have to concentrate on the straight punch. We could start focusing on the finger jabs, palm heels and ox jaws. These are striking surfaces to vital areas which are not available with conventional punches.

Again for things like this, we do not need forms, we need drills and exercises to build on attributes. What seperates TKD or any Korean MA from all other forms of MA is it's emphasis on kicks. Korean MA contain more kicks than any other styles. Not that we discard or under use our punches and hand strikes; our kicks are executed differently and employed more.
"Poor is the pupil who
does not surpass his
master" - Leonardo Da

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