Saturday, 17 October 2009

Teaching at Tang Soo Do

Tuesday night's Tang Soo Do was less sweaty and more cerebral. It's good to explore lesser taught aspects of the art and tonight meant much in-depth teaching of forms and one steps. I love to teach forms and their applications: it's somewhere you can find real depth in karate so needless to say I had a fun time and loved grilling students to make sure stances were in order. I enjoyed seeing a beginner react to my tuition and 'get it'. She was executing movements in the last phase of the step and from the elbow. A step through and punch should be one fluid movement starting from the front stance, flowing through with the step, arms engaging and body weight and momentum adding power to the torquing punch. Once I'd explained that this step and punch was one movement she stopped prodding the air and got it together! Fantastic. I hope she gets more from her forms now. Hyung is a connected and organic entity not really a series of movements. Describing it as a series of movements almost implies that the movements are disparate. It really shouldn't be considered as 35 moves nor should it be thought of as one 'process'. Usually forms can be conceptualised as 4 or 5 grand processes within one entity. (See also Rhythm in Hyungs)

On that note I am pleased to say that I learned a new form. Something I haven't done in years so it was a pleasant experience. It seems a completely different process from when I was a white belt. Back then I struggled with basic concepts such as low block or front stance or (as above) dealing with chunks of form rather than piecemeal. Now I know how to execute a low block so I don't need to expend energy on that but I do need to dig deeper into the application and rhythm (or punctuation) which is challenging but in a different way!

This is not the style of Rohai I learned but this is beautiful to see:

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