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May 1, 2006

TSD Seminar

Now that I've returned from the dirty south and grad school is in recess until Summer session. I can actually start devoting more time to my training regiment.
I attended our World Moo Duk Kwan Tang Soo Do seminar held, late last month. As I described in a previous post, our federation president Grandmaster Jae Joon Kim(GMK), typically holds two per year. The seminar is normally held in conjuction with the dan or black belt exam. Essentially, the seminar is designed to ensure that all of the instructors and students are informed of any subtle changes to our hyungs (forms) or anything else that GMK would like understood. GMK, also brings his son, Master Nahm (pronounced 'nawm'), to help teach the students, as we normally have about 30-50 attendees. I'm always amazed at the intensity of Nam's forms. He does them quite well. For instance, the Nihanji forms (aka iron horse), require very firm and distinct stomps during each technique. These stomps are attacks on assailants, as your back is a against the wall and you are defending yourself against two imaginary assailants.

When I watch Nam, it is quite apparent that I need to do much work to get the proper intensity. Even the torso twists during the attacks are done with much force and intensity. It really is a pleasure to watch him execute these Nihanji forms. Take a look at an example of Nihanji ee-dan forms. The demonstration is performed Dennis McHenry.

I suppose the most interesting aspect of the recent seminar was that of an eight year old boy. He was one of four students who test for 1st Dan. The child had an unusual focus and concentration for a very young child. I have taught young children, and it is no easy task to say the least. If you can get them to stand still for about five minutes, you are doing something quite extroadinary. So naturally, I was very intrigued with this little boy. He had no problems understanding the commands issued in Korean. He executed 95% percent of the techniques to perfection. I'm sure his parents were quite pleased. Though statistics are probably against him, I do hope that he will continue to train through adulthood.. I usually am not a proponent of young children testing for black belts, but this kid appeared to be quite disciplined and very much aware of the responsibility. It truly is not child's play.

Posted by AG at May 1, 2006 11:39 PM