Always the Basics!

While not truly a revelation last night, but its fun when the words come around to help explain things better. This one involves connecting the basics to your poomsae/gumbub (forms). During a class being covered by a Black belt (because I was in South Korea), the extra comments made during a drill were something like […]

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Something about loss…

In a conversation yesterday, someone brought up that it was the one year anniversary of a break-up and got teary during it. We chatted a bit more and I realized that my point of view may be a bit…different. I have had my share of loss. My father passed in 1983 and my mother in […]

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How many teachers do you have?

From a basic point of view for a martial artist, you should have ONE…but… Yes, you should be going to class to be taught by your teacher (school master?). You are paying them to instill their knowledge and wisdom in you, so you should be in their class. Now here’s where the line blur though, […]

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How do you tell who a good student is?

Do you judge by their rank? Are you sure that you know the “order” of their school’s ranks? Do you judge by the look of their uniform? Is it fancy? Is it clean…even pressed? Personally, I look at how they train. Things like completing the assignment, then continuing to work on the material until further […]

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Do you know what you don’t know?

Looking at some of the websites for martial arts schools, I came across a commonly used marketing comment…”We individualize the training to meet your needs and goals.” This made me begin to wonder if I needed to be able to “defeat any man in 10 seconds” or “destroy any opponent” as part of my self […]

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Why do you train (part 2)

Now that you’ve looked at the question again, where are you in your training? The changes in the curriculum that I’ve had make it “significantly different” to achieve goals. I used that phrase intentionally. I can’t say that the changes have made it harder or easier to achieve ranks. Those just coming into the system […]

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Why do you train?

Recently changes have occurred in a curriculum that I teach. Now these changes were not something I initiated but they’ve got students agitated. It has made me think about why people train. Personally, my training started because I saw the old Kung Fu TV show. After seeing the portrayal of discipline and control…along with cool […]

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Martial arts…today?

Help wanted — Martial Arts Instructor – Tae Kwon Do-EDE01156 Description: Our team of Martial Arts Instructors works to provide entertaining and educational athletic programs for our members. Utilize your excellent customer service skills and passion for martial arts in this exciting position! As a Marital Arts Instructor, you will teach new skills to members […]

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How great are my students?

The caption in the left corner reads… Individual medals won… 5 Gold 9 Silver 8 Bronze (but there are still 6 medals unverified and not included on the list) Best Dojang Award for best team performance 2 Mudo Spirit Awards (the swords) of demonstrating the spirit of Haidong Gumdo. These are not typically awarded.

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Competition

So, why do you “compete”? Regardless of the activity that you prefer, why do you “compete”? It struck me recently that, even though they acknowledge the amount of effort, commitment and training that goes into competing, people really associate success with the trophy won. Now, professional athletes compete…because they’re PAID. If they weren’t, they would […]

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Have you learned anything?

So, you’ve been training in a martial art for a while now. You can perform poomse/kata. You have practiced one-step sparring. You have worked on self defense combinations. You have sparred with most of your fellow students (and hopefully some of the black belts). Now, what have you learned? Would you be able to line […]

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Winning & trophies

During the last Afterschool Taekwondo class I did a technique based relay. The group was eleven 6-8 year olds. It became a great teaching point…after the fact. The first students in each team did pretty well but it didn’t take long for the desire to “win” to show up. By the end, only about 15% […]

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Time Marches On

It has been quite a while since I’ve written anything. This is mostly from running out of time. The days seem to keep getting shorter and they pass by quickly. Hard to believe that its already March. The upside is that I have plenty going on to keep me out of trouble. The Spring Test […]

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Military Wannabe

Yeah, that’s me. I know you’re saying that pretty obvious but the story goes beyond the martial arts. So, back about 30 years and almost a high school graduate, I visited an Air Force recruiter with the intent of enlisting to become one of their law enforcement officers. Well, I was told that I couldn’t […]

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What are you doing right now?

The idea for this rambling came from seeing one of my college Taekwondo students wearing a pair of Sock Monkey slippers… in Minnesota… in December. When he saw me notice them, all he said…with a grin… was that the chicks love them. My comment was that wearing them is great…even in the Winter…as long as he’s […]

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Beginner’s Mind

Aikido has the concept of “Beginner’s Mind”. Basically, it is the idea that everytime you go to train you do so with a completely open mind. This is meant to help the student “see” repeated material as if for the first time in order to learn something new (or additional) from it. A couple weeks […]

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There is no secret ingredient…just train

I got the chance to watch Kung Fu Panda, again, and The Sorcerer’s Apprentice last night. Its a nice little piece of brain candy to relax and just enjoy. However, it did get me thinking. (Kung Fu Panda) At the end, it was discovered that the secret Dragon scroll had no writing and there was no […]

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Service attitude

So, yesterday when I had a new officer start her first day of work, she asked me who she would notify if she had an emergency. Now, my first thought went to the procedure listed in our post orders. I didn’t think that was what she was asking though. She expanded upon her question with “you know…if […]

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What does it take?

This past Spring, I was trying to organize locations and events at which Haidong Gumdo – Minnesota could do demonstrations. I didn’t find any new events but was able to get return engagements at previous events. Now, I’ll agree that this isn’t very noteworthy but something I was told by a Parks & Recreation Director […]

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