Are You Doing It Right?

So, you’ve been training for quite a while and know all the basic movements. You work hard to make the basics correct. Now, as you work on your patterns, techniques aren’t fitting. Are you doing techniques differently than during basics? Why?

Have you found the combinations that are the same in different patterns? Have you discovered the progression that happens as you learn patterns? Have you worked toward making the similar movements recognizable across a set of patterns?

[Haidong Gumdo] There was a little fun had cutting milk jugs. The first couple students missed the jug on the first 3-4 cuts. Finally, a student stops and asks “Why are our techniques worse when there’s a target?” It got a good laugh but it also made a very good point. Why do techniques change when we add targets?

My thought is that basic cuts are the most correct cuts that you can do. This makes their practice vital. That your efforts are focused on making each repetition better than the previous…better than the last class. Your cuts should always be the same as during basic cuts.

[Taekwondo] This is no different in Taekwondo. Your blocks, strikes, and kicks should be done in drills to be the most correct that you can make them. Speed and power development as well as precision always need development.

Now that you’re paying closer attention the your techniques, the challenge is to not change them when you transfer basic movements to patterns. If a stance is done a specific way during drills, then it should look the same in your patterns. Your movements should look just like drills just in a mixed up order.

The applications of the techniques should be visible during your patterns. These applications have only minor variations (usually targeting) and are still performed the same across many patterns. Combinations work because the techniques fit together well enough to be successfully used. Those that didn’t work were discarded.

Your techniques have been developed and now it’s time for the next portion of your training. My students have heard me repeat the saying that a handful of my teachers all used. They’re told “Physical techniques are only 10% of an art.” This means that there is the other 90% of the art that has way much more for you to learn.

The benefits of self control, self discipline, and focus are all within the martial arts BUT they’re not in obvious lessons. Just because you came to class doesn’t mean that you learned them. Self control comes from working through the frustrations of learning new techniques or patterns. Self discipline comes from returning to class and working on the material. Focus comes from following directions and developing awareness. All of these, then, help to develop an indomitable spirit.

Once the recognition of how these traits develop, then they can be applied to other topics/subjects to become successful in all of the adventures you undertake…even when they aren’t things you’re interested in.

Hero Round Table (October 23 & 24, 2017)

WHAT IS THE HERO ROUND TABLE?

Often called the TED Talks of heroism, the Hero Round Table teaches people how to be more than a bystander. From our humble beginnings in Michigan to our global series on three continents and counting, we’ve already seen attendees go on to do amazing things.

Most importantly, the Hero Round Table has created a worldwide community dedicated to practicing heroism. We have spurred academic research on what makes people do heroic things, and we help regular people act on what we’ve learned. (quoted from the Hero Round Table website)

I have a very distinct honor coming up in October. I get to be one of 21 presenters for the Hero Round Table in Michigan. I will be discussing how the martial arts helps create your Hero! These Heroes take on the daily challenge of life.

Feel free to contact me with any questions. You can use the contact form below. If you are interested in attending, please follow the link here – http://heroroundtable.com/michigan

Coincidence…No Such Thing

Over the past weeks, I’ve had several conversations about vacations and how they fit (or don’t) into your job. These have all come about by another’s initiation, not myself, asking if there was such a thing as a job that you didn’t need to take a vacation from or wanting reassurance that if you love your job, you’ll never work again.

I’ve found it odd that these five or so conversations happened in different cities and settings over the three weeks. I could see it happening as a regular topic in one location and setting but over a large part of Minnesota, not so much.

Today, a discussion about Taekwondo training lead to some similar thoughts. How do things get accomplished? Through effort. If the effort is toward something that you aren’t interested in, then it can become work. That’s unfortunate but, getting the work done will still make the accomplishment. So, toward this end, you aren’t “working” if you are enjoying the effort in achieving something.

Since things don’t “just” happen, there’s no such thing as coincidence. (Gibbs’ Rule #39) The efforts made to accomplish a thing (career, goal, dream) is the whole reason that you completed it. If you ask most popular music artists, you’ll hear several of them agree that they were an over-night success ten years in the making.

Many of these efforts include finding teachers and mentors that have appropriate knowledge and experience. It also includes peers are traveling a similar path. This is because it is part of your Hero Journey.

Now, I’m not saying everything will be happy and easy! I’ve been around martial arts for a long time and, every so often,, I need to not go to class. I guess this means that your attitude will most often affect whether you have to work or not. Attitude most greatly affects how you choose to put effort into an activity. Again, there is no coincidence. Only choices and effort.

2017-2018 Beginning Taekwondo Classes (SLP Community Education)

The Pine Tree Taekwondo program will be available for anyone grade 3 and older starting September 18th! There are two sections for this class. 

Monday & Wednesday 7:00pm

Tuesday & Thursday 6:00pm

These classes are offered in coordination with the school calendar. If there isn’t school that day, this class won’t meet. Please note that there are many “no class” days posted but it is inaccurate. The dates will be updated.

To see the class description and register, please follow this link – https://springlakepark.ce.eleyo.com/course/153/school-year-2017-2018/beginning-taekwondo-with-white-tiger-martial-arts-gr-3-12

2017-2018 Advanced Taekwondo Classes (SLP Community Education)

The Pine Tree Taekwondo program will be available for anyone grade 3 and older starting September 18th! Previous martial arts experience is required for joining this class. Please contact the instructor with questions. There are two sections for this class. 

Monday & Wednesday 7:30pm

Tuesday & Thursday 6:30pm

These classes are offered in coordination with the school calendar. If there isn’t school that day, this class won’t meet. Please note that there are many “no class” days posted but it is inaccurate. The dates will be updated.

To see the class description and register, please follow this link – https://springlakepark.ce.eleyo.com/course/153/school-year-2017-2018/advanced-taekwondo-with-white-tiger-martial-arts-gr-3-12

Goals

In reading Randy King‘s book, Selling Out To Your Level of Comfort, the section about setting goals started me thinking about many different things. One of these is how I look forward.

I say this because I have found that when I want to get something done, I jump into the deep end and try to figure it out. This started with stuff as simple as making a website. I knew nothing about html, css, or java. I found a program that I could understand and learned how to make it work. When I got stuck, I asked for help (thank you, Adam Tagarro). He’d send over script that would do what I want and tell me where to put it on the page. Then, I’d start playing with the script to see if I could make it do similar things for the website.

When I know that the end results will help me move toward what I want to achieve, then I’m willing to get things started…even if it gets assigned to someone else later. It isn’t about ego and resume. It is about achieving the goal. I will always work hard to get things done.

Which brings me back to the idea of setting goals. If you look in most self help/personal development books, you will find a section about setting goals as a way to become successful and take you into the future.

This is an important issue. It may not be that you NEED to list specific goals BUT you do need to have some idea of where you want to go! One specific goal with several levels/achievements along the way can work too. Does this sound a bit familiar? Several of you reading this have followed this each time you’ve done a rank promotion test. I know…well, have a good idea, of what I want to do but I don’t have a clear vision of how I’m going to get there. I can live with that.

I have many wonderful and capable students who will continue the journey, so what I’m really wondering about is how to get the ideas I have in my head moved forward enough for others to continue them. If you aren’t sure what ideas I have, you should ask me! You might be the key to make things move forward…or at least the next step!