International Technical Seminar - Holland
Senior Master Hwang Ho Yong 8th degree
Master Robert Howard and Mr Conor Dunne (Athlone) attended an ITF technical seminar in Holland last weekend (13-15th May). The seminar was conducted by the ITF’s technical director Senior Master Hwang Ho Yong(8th Degree) and hosted by Taekwon-Do International Nederland.
The main theme of the three day seminar was on the composition of Taekwon-Do; fundamental movements, dallyon (conditioning, power breaking), patterns, sparring, self-defence, and how all five components feedinto each other. If you neglect any of the components then your
self-defence, which is the ultimate (physical) goal of Taekwon-Do won’t work.
With that message in mind SM Hwang started the seminar with instruction on fundamental movements. This included blocks, hand attacks and kicks. His kicking technique and leg strength put many of the attendeesto shame.
In the patterns he gave correction on Chon Ji to Choi-Yong (3rd degree), but unfortunately didn’t get a chance to do the higher degree patterns.
In the sparring the emphasised the importance of following the order of 3-step, 2-step, semi-free sparring, free-sparring, 1 –step. He said that if you learn and teach sparring in this order that you and your students will then be fully prepared for the final component (self-defence). He said that sparring is not the pinnacle of Taekwon-Do, self-defence is the goal.
He then brought the class through self-defence (release from grabs etc), defence against a knife (similar toone step), and knife sparring. It was clear for the logical progress from 3-step to 1 step that all the concepts (strong blocks, inside blocks versus outside blocks, logical counter-attacks, etc) for real self-defence are present. Unfortunately most students don’t see this and view these as just something which they must do to pass their grading. He said that it is important that instructor teach this very well sothat the students are really prepared for self-defence.
SM Hwang had a very relaxed and pleasant way about him and all the attendees were relaxed and found it very easy to learn and ask questions. The funniest moment was when he got the class to sing to encourage them use a group rhythm when doing a pattern in class as opposed to 70 individual rhythms.
He presented an ITF distinguished service medal posthumously to Senior Master Bart Stokhoff who sadly died last year. SM Stokhoff was the chief instructor to Holland and the medal was collected by his daughter.
The whole weekend was a great success. Aside from the fantastic Taekwo-Do training and instruction; the accommodation, food and organisation by the Dutch federation was excellent.