How important are patterns to you?

Discussion in 'Taekwondo Patterns' started by Finlay, Sep 11, 2015.

  1. Finlay

    Finlay Active Member

    Not all arts have forms, and not all arts that have forms do anything with them other than practice them.


    How important are your patterns in your practice,

    Are they a good work out?
    Are they a set of out dated techniques that we keep for tradition?
    Are they pointless but something that has to be done to make the art seem fuller?

    Or any other ideas
  2. akisbat

    akisbat Member

    I believe the forms are very important for the practitioner. They help us learn how to use our mind in order to fully control our body , to concentrate on a specific task and be patient.
    At least for me , the forms also help me to relax and forget about everything else , something like doing meditation.

    As a workout , I would say it is pretty tough if someone do them properly and pays attention to even the smaller details.

    Forms are a part of the art that can never be cut out and must not be overlooked.
    Gnarlie likes this.
  3. Gnarlie

    Gnarlie Well-Known Member

    "From the technical viewpoint, the poomsae itself is Taekwondo, and the basic movements are no more than the preliminary actions to reach the poomsae. The Kyorugi is a practical application of the poomsae and the Taekwondo spirit is manifested not in an abstract mental philosophy expressed in the documents but in the actions of the poomsae. Then, what is the Taekwondo poomsae? The poomsae is the style of conduct which expresses directly or indirectly mental and physical refinements as well as the principles of offense and defense resulting from cultivation of Taekwondo spirit and techniques." - Kukkiwon Taekwondo Textbook, 2006 ed.

    That about says it. Poomsae is Taekwondo, and everything else we practice is either a basic technique to reach the poomsae, or is an application of principles and techniques learned through poomsae.

    Incidentally, when I say poomsae, I primarily mean the black belt poomsae. The Taegeuk forms are sets of basic techniques didactically designed to progressively teach movements leading up to the black belt poomsae. Although the Taegeuk series are sets of movements designed to communicate specific important principles and philosophy, the essence of our art lies in the blackbelt poomsae.
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2015
  4. Finlay

    Finlay Active Member

    Very good answer

    As an ITF practitioner, I never knew that about the kukkiwon poomse. Thank you
  5. Matt

    Matt Member

    Patterns to me are what Taekwondo is.... Over time sparring has changed and evolved so much, it doesn't even remotely reflect the type of sparring they did 20 years ago. But the patterns have not changed. Patterns are yes tradition, but also mach combat. They are a way to visualize yourself in a self defense situation which is why they combine blocks and punches in various directions. To answer your questions, patterns are a great work out. My school often times does marathon patterns where you go from one pattern right into the next with no rest or even returning to jum-bi. This is quite a work out for stamina if like me you have 20 plus patterns.
    Anthony Hayward likes this.
  6. We teach patterns this way: poomse is a pattern of self defense against multiple, imaginary opponents. A student must perform their pattern a thousand times before they are able to grasp the essence of it's meaning.

    To me, patterns are essential to Taekwondo. There is so much knowledge and history behind each individual pattern. Keon, Tae, Ri, Jinn, Seon, Gam, Gan, Gon. Even for a student to understand the meaning of the Palgwe and Taeguek enriches their learning experience and fuels their passion for the art. I've recently become obsessed with learning ITF and MDK/TSD poomses. Our school only performs Taeguek and Kukkiwon. I've charged myself with the task of learning each of the alternative styles; and of course, I started with Moon Moo, and will be working my way down. (I already performed it at competition against Pyongwon, no brainer right?)

    Perfecting each technique, individually, is not enough.

    My favorite part about poomse is when the end meets the beginning. The smallest details, such as pivoting on the ball of the foot or the heel can drastically change the outcome. Through this level of attention to detail, the student becomes more in tune with their body through the focus of the mind.
  7. Finlay

    Finlay Active Member

    So as an add on....

    How many patterns do you need? In ITF there are 24 patterns. In other systems there are maybe more or less. I think the most I have heard about is 64 and of course some have none.

    Is it easy to fall into the trap of just learning forms and thinking it makes you a better martial artist? Or do you feel incomplete if you don't have a large array of forms that you can demos rate?
  8. Matt

    Matt Member

    I don't believe knowing a large amount of patterns makes you better per say. I personally know a lot. I know the ITF color belt patterns and black belt patterns up through currently Yoo Sin. I also know the WTF black belt patterns up through Pyong Wan. On the side I have taught myself some of the Taegeuk patterns along with various weapons patterns. Those ranging from traditional karate patterns my master learned as a kid, or patterns my master created in his younger days.
  9. Pleonasm

    Pleonasm Active Member

    The patterns have changed. Kukkikwon originally had the Palgwae forms and nowdays have the Taegeuk forms. Some schools do both most dropped the Palgwae.

    As for the thread topic: I'd say alot of the pattern techniques are applicable but outdated. You can use them and they will work, but it's going to hurt you more than other forms of street defence. The hard blocks are not very good in full contact, as people transitioning into Kickboxing sparring have complained about. They just don't work in that arena which is why you never see it.

    But on the street against a nobody, pattern blocks are good enough.
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2016
  10. Matt

    Matt Member

    Yes okay, you're correct by stating patterns have changed. But, they have not changed as much as sport Taekwondo has. Patterns are still the root of Taekwondo especially the Chang Han forms, which are the original 24 patterns created by General Choi.
  11. Pleonasm

    Pleonasm Active Member

    Well, Choi Hong Hi did not complete the patterns until 1963. They used Shotokan patterns mixed with Chang Hon colour and black belt patterns before 1963. Choi Hong Hi took great pride by announcing in 1963 that all traces of Karate was "eliminated". I actually think that the training differs more than the actual techniques. Not that the techniques are the same, but a lasting impression of an old school TKD training over Karate, is that TKD is much more militaristic in nature, with different emphasis. So even if the techniques were the same, the training is different enough to motivate one art over the other (depending on ones preference).
  12. Evildwarf

    Evildwarf Member

    Form practice is so important! Through the execution of forms I learn so may essential skills.....balance, power, control, breathing, concentration....the execution of a technique and setting the body correctly for the next technique fosters an awaerness of how all techniques are related and none can be done correctly in isolation.
    My forms can be a comfortable warm up before a workout session or a great workout all by themselves or form practice can be a soothing cool down after a hard workout session.
    an emphasis on form execution forces a student to examine and experience each little nuance of a technique, is my hand positioned just right, how is this particular stance and how do I transition into the next stance...
    I enjoy forms and always watch the senior students as they execute their forms knowing that I'll get there someday with work and perseverance.

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