F o r m s

Poomsae, or forms, are sets of ordered techniques designed to strengthen the students' grasp of application and movement of basic techniques learned in class. Each time a student performs any poomsae, he or she must keep in mind that the form is an exercise in combat, in which he or she is fighting against one or more invisible opponents. Constant and thoughtful practice of forms yields improvements in focus, strength, stamina, balance, and discipline.

This is the thing to remember when training forms for tournament, or training forms in general. You should practice each time as if the situation were real, and when you arrive at tournament, all you have to do is do the same you have done in the dojang in practice. Below is a quick list of things to focus on in forms, but always remember that these are just a guideline, and feel free to ask an instructor for further assistance whenever necessary.

  • FocusYou are fighting. It should seem so to you, and then it will be to your audience. Turn your head before turning the rest of your body. Always keep your eyes focused forward on the imaginary opponent. Be aware of each technique and both arms and both legs.
  • TechniqueMake sure every technique is executed to demonstrate your understanding of its application and execution. Snap them. Chamber your other hand. Recoil your kicks.
  • StancesA stance is very important. It is the foundation of your power and balance, without which you are helpless. Your stances should be strong and balanced, as should your steps.
  • Ki HapIn the past, ki haps were a weapon. The fighter had to yell so hard that the energy of his yell would stun the opponent, allowing an opening for attack. Ki haps are also meant to release internal energy into a technique, for focus and further effectiveness. Bring it from your diaphrapm and belly.
  • RespectRespect yourself and the judges. If you have ability, they will see it and reward you accordningly. A swagger is not only demeaning to you as a martial artist, but it will probably also lose you points!
  • PerseveranceYou may not always win, but you will always learn. Go home, train again, and return. In the past, it was not uncommon for a martial artist to do a form 1000 times, literally, in order to qualify for a promotion.

See the Poomsae page for forms appropriate for each belt rank. These guidelines are also followed in competition.

C o p y r i g h t

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