Tang Soo Do...just some questions.

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Thread: Tang Soo Do...just some questions.

  1. #1
    Member Array newhunter1's Avatar
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    Tang Soo Do...just some questions.

    Hey everyone...I am considering getting back into the martial arts...specifically Tang Soo Do. Simply because this Dojang is basically one of two in my town. The instructor is a 6th degree black belt in the art...and the other one is a Tae Kwon Do, judo, jujitsu, and about three other systems.

    The fees are 80.00 a month for 2 classes per week...8 per month.

    My background: 42 years old...4 years Marine Corps, 6 1/2 Kansas Army National Guard

    8 years training in the martial arts
    Black belt in Tae Kwon Do
    3rd degree Brown in Judo (Judo is my passion)and Hapkido

    Now...I have been out of training now for 6 years and want to get back into it, but my former instructor moved 60 miles away and the other Tae Kwon Do dojang has some pretty arrogant people there as instructors. I truly cannot stand an arrogant instructor...in fact one of their senior judo instructors would berate his white belts...he didn't like it when I he got thrown by someone wearing a white belt. (out of respect for a new school I'll wear a white belt and this instructor thought I was a white belt....he got a bit of humble pie.)

    I've researched the origins of Tang Soo Do as well as some of their kicks and to be honest I see a very similar style with the Tae Kwon Do.

    What I really am looking for is more weapons training with things like canes, sticks etc...(tang soo do seems to have this) as well as getting back into exercise.

    I've spoken with the instructor and has just opened this school...he only has 2-3 students in class. I will check his class out on Tuesday and if I like what I see then I will ask to take one of his classes. I'll offer 10.00 for an hour (80.00 a month divided by 8 classes in a month) and if I like that class I'll make a commitment to him. I will however begin as a white belt (which I don't mind) as the instructor begins everyone as a white belt then adjusts their belts after the first test.) I don't/won't sign a contract.

    Those of you who are familiar with this style...what should I look for as far as warning signs of anything? Also, my past instructor trained us in combat style tae kwon do...not the competitive style. Our master was a former ROK Marine commander...so more military style.
    I do not love the bright sword for its sharpness,
    nor the arrow for its swiftness,
    nor the warrior for his glory.
    I love only that which they defend.

    -J.R.R. Tolkien

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    Distinguished Member Array Hoganbeg's Avatar
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    I know little of Tang Soo Do but I think nearly all arts can teach us something useful. I applaud your decision to keep training. As a black belt you should be at a point where you can evaluate the techniques being taught. It sounds as if you have a good grounding in flips,throws, & kicks. How is your knowledge of leverages, grab releases, pressure points, vital & non-vital targets and body mechanics? There is also a psychology of fighting. These are areas I consider important and make a good basis for evaluating any other art. What ever art you choose, if the training doesn't meet your needs, have a heart-to-heart talk with the instructor and don't be afraid to look elsewhere if you must. Bad training is almost worse than no training. My personal style is San Soo but I've heard very good things about the ROK training; grounded in reality and effective. Try to continue with a combat-oriented art if one is offered in your area. Most arts do not teach firearm related skills such as retention and disarms (not to mention actually shooting). Krav Maga is one of the few that does. It seems to be very effective and well balanced in terms of weapons vs empty hands. The Filipino arts are also reality based and integrate weapon training with empty hand from the very beginning. As I'm sure you know, the principles and body mechanics remain pretty much the same whether with weapons or empty handed. What changes is distance and force. Anyway, good luck and remember what Bruce Lee said; keep what works for you and discard the rest.
    Be Strong!

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    VIP Member Array glockman10mm's Avatar
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    I believe Chuck Norris chose Tang Soo DO. My chosen style was Chinese Street fighting, ala , Traditional Kenpo. I always liked watching and sparring with Korean styles. They have beautiful high kicks, but I never sparred with one of any degree that did not telegraph the kick.
    Ignorance is a long way from stupid, but left unchecked, can get there real fast.

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    Quote Originally Posted by newhunter1 View Post
    I truly cannot stand an arrogant instructor...in fact one of their senior judo instructors would berate his white belts...he didn't like it when I he got thrown by someone wearing a white belt. (out of respect for a new school I'll wear a white belt and this instructor thought I was a white belt....he got a bit of humble pie.)


    Quote Originally Posted by newhunter1 View Post
    What I really am looking for is more weapons training with things like canes, sticks etc...(tang soo do seems to have this) as well as getting back into exercise.

    I've spoken with the instructor and has just opened this school...he only has 2-3 students in class. I will check his class out on Tuesday and if I like what I see then I will ask to take one of his classes. I'll offer 10.00 for an hour (80.00 a month divided by 8 classes in a month) and if I like that class I'll make a commitment to him. I will however begin as a white belt (which I don't mind) as the instructor begins everyone as a white belt then adjusts their belts after the first test.) I don't/won't sign a contract.

    Those of you who are familiar with this style...what should I look for as far as warning signs of anything? Also, my past instructor trained us in combat style tae kwon do...not the competitive style. Our master was a former ROK Marine commander...so more military style.
    I'm not familiar with the style, but, in general, and for the benefit of the forum, don't forget to evaluate the teacher by his product = his students.
    Americans understood the right of self-preservation as permitting a citizen to repel force by force
    when the intervention of society... may be too late to prevent an injury.
    -Blackstone’s Commentaries 145–146, n. 42 (1803) in District of Columbia v. Heller, 554 U.S. 570 (2008)

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    Member Array newhunter1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pistology View Post




    I'm not familiar with the style, but, in general, and for the benefit of the forum, don't forget to evaluate the teacher by his product = his students.
    He has not been open very long and has about 3-5 students.
    I do not love the bright sword for its sharpness,
    nor the arrow for its swiftness,
    nor the warrior for his glory.
    I love only that which they defend.

    -J.R.R. Tolkien

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    Senior Member Array MotorCityGun's Avatar
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    Be careful of schools or instructors who require you to sign any type of contract to join their school/class. If it is only a month by month ($80) commitment, and you don't like what you're doing or what/how they're instructing, you're out only 80 bucks. Always keep in mind that you are the customer of martial art instruction/services.

    I've found that the really good instructors are the ones who are not rigidly stuck in their particular "style" of martial art. Yes, there should be a base or foundation to their style for consistency sake, however, s/he should be willing to evolve based upon new knowledge or techniques. There are instructors who I know who are still doing the same (old) thing that was done 25 yrs ago.

    Lastly, beware of instructors who want to get to know or get involved with their students on a personal level.

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    VIP Member Array NY27's Avatar
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    Finding a good martial arts school is difficult. I have been practicing Kenpo since 87. I got my belt in 93. A few years ago, when I moved, I tried to find a school in my area. There was a Tang Soo Do school that looked like it may fit. I took a free lesson. But they were, as you say, geared towards competition instead of combat. I need someplace where I can really spar. Not play tag.

    Give them a try, see how you like it.
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    At your age and with your considerable background, you should be able to quickly evaluate things.
    I agree with the "don't sign a contract" advice. Go week to week, lesson to lesson, or maybe month to month.

    You specifically mentioned you wanted more weapons training with things like canes, sticks etc.. That is quite different from kick boxing and judo/jujitso. I think the suggestion about Philippine arts might make some sense as would some bo-staff training. Have you actually asked the instructor what he teaches; not style, but if weapons training is a heavy part of the program?
    If the Union is once severed, the line of separation will grow wider and wider, and the controversies which are now debated and settled in the halls of legislation will then be tried in fields of battle and determined by the sword.
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    Member Array newhunter1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hopyard View Post
    At your age and with your considerable background, you should be able to quickly evaluate things.
    I agree with the "don't sign a contract" advice. Go week to week, lesson to lesson, or maybe month to month.

    You specifically mentioned you wanted more weapons training with things like canes, sticks etc.. That is quite different from kick boxing and judo/jujitso. I think the suggestion about Philippine arts might make some sense as would some bo-staff training. Have you actually asked the instructor what he teaches; not style, but if weapons training is a heavy part of the program?
    Actually I haven't. I will go tomorrow and observe him in his teaching environment as well as ask some questions.
    I do not love the bright sword for its sharpness,
    nor the arrow for its swiftness,
    nor the warrior for his glory.
    I love only that which they defend.

    -J.R.R. Tolkien

  11. #10
    Distinguished Member Array Jason Storm's Avatar
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    As long as a traditional or sport martial art has some combat applications and self-defense training on their syllabus, it's okay. Just make sure to figure out what techniques work for you and discard the rest. Also once you feel that you want to move to another style or use another supplementary style that is more geared for the street (ex.=adrenaline stress training/Krav Maga/CFA/etc.)

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