233398 Bullies, 3877 online  
  • Register
Our Sponsors:

Results 1 to 10 of 36
Page 1 of 4 1 234 LastLast
  1. --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!

    Why TKD Takes So Much Bashing

    OK, I was doing an unrelated google search and found out that someone posted this "article" of mine somewhere around 2004.

    I don't know where it went but it seems to have dropped off.

    I originally wrote and posted it on the usenet forum rec.martial-arts (RMA).

    I don't know who originally posed it here to bullshido, but I'm OK with it. Heck, maybe I posted it myself and just don't remember it.

    Being 7 years old now, it may be a bit dated, however there were some references to it in some of the archived threads.

    Anyway, here's the original "article."

    Taekwondo: Why TKD Takes So Much Bashing


    Why do so many people bash Tae Kwon Do?
    When attempting to compare one art with others in any meaningful way, I find it best to work along the lines of Philosophy, Strategy, and Techniques.

    As far as TKD goes, we'll try to work first with the general PERCEPTIONS among other martial artists.

    Let's start with the easiest first: Techniques.

    Loosely speaking, Techniques are the conglomeration of punches, kicks, grapples, joint-locks, Weapons subsets, nerve strikes, blocking, slipping, redirecting, etc. that comprise an art. Basically, the actual nuts and bolts of an attack or a defense (both "hard" and "soft" see RMA FAQ). As a general rule, most arts are drawn from the same pool of techniques but typically include the most basic set of techniques from most or all of these "areas." That being said, we can exit "general rules" and get into more specifics in which we can say that a particular art may include more sets or variations of one class of techniques than others and may exclude other sets or variations.

    Generally speaking, the perception among non-TKD practitioners is that TKD focuses far too much on kicks with very little emphasis on punching, particularly as influenced by Competition style TKD, seldom any joint-locks and almost never any grappling. This means that (according to perception), TKD is vastly myopic in its Technique selection. TKD *does* have a seeming endless variation of kicks but, selected instructors excepted, often little else.

    Next there is the aspect of Strategy:

    Perhaps the most difficult of the three to determine in specifics about any given art, Strategy describes the overall concept of how the set of techniques of an art are applied to combat or physical confrontations. Basically, the Strategy of an art prepares the practitioner to respond in certain ways with a given set of techniques to various attacks. It is concerned with elements of how Techniques are constructed or applied, particularly in reference to Linear versus Circular. One of the most famous and easily understood Martial Arts Strategies comes from Brazilian JuJitsu. Basically stated, BJJ's Strategy says: "All, or most, fights are comprised of only two combatants, and end up with both combatants 'wresting' on the ground rather than standing, thus, to be most effective, the greatest emphasis in training should be on 'groundwork'." Other arts have Strategies that are based on or include "angles of attack", etc. Some arts have the simplest of all Strategies, which is 'the best defense is a good offense', or stated another way, 'do as much damage as possible and keep doing damage until the opponent is no longer a threat'.

    The general perception of TKD is that, it again focuses to exclusion upon kicking skills. The old saying goes, "If all you have is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail." Most TKD detractors believe that TKD's Strategy is fixated on a false assumption that TKD's range of kicks will be sufficient for most self defense or combat situations at the expense of other, perhaps more viable solutions that are completely left out of the TKD Techniques.Further, it is the perception that TKD focuses on *high* kicks nearly to the exclusion of low kicks. That is, TKD teaches a strategy that launches kicks at the opponent *above* the level of the waist. The feeling of many is that this leaves the TKD exponent in a position of weak balance that can easily be taken advantage of by even unskilled opponents.

    As a subset of Strategy, let's briefly examine Training. This describes the methods and exercises used in learning and practicing the art in question. Training can differ radically from one instructor to the next within a single Martial Art, to say nothing of from one Martial Art to another. Thus, it is not really possible to classify training for a specific art in anything other than broad generalization. Training can, and frequently does, include exercises where a given Technique is broken down into small, easily digested, bits which, once understood are then moved into one, flowing movement, The Technique. In the Martial Arts world, there are currently two hotly debated Training tools, Sparing and Forms.

    Sparing, sometimes called Randori (and its close relative, Competition, or Kumite) is where the Martial Artist faces one or more training partners where each engage in varying degrees of free form attacks and defenses. It is widely held that, in order to learn to use Techniques and Strategy "on the fly" or under stress, one must put them to the test in the most realistic practice engagements possible. Since it is undesirable to seriously injure your Sparring partner (who would you have to spar with if you put all your training partners in the hospital?), there is nearly always some level of holding back and/or protective equipment worn during Sparring.

    It has been noted that in TKD, most sparring has a predilection (again) to high-kicks. This predilection towards high kicks becomes difficult and even dangerous to perform on some surfaces such as gravel or may be inappropriate for varying reasons, yet, because of his training, it is believed that the TKD practitioner would choose a high-kick by rote when a low kick would better suffice.

    Though few people doubt TKD's wide range of kicking Techniques have some applications, most observe that they aren't exactly BatMan's Utility Belt and aren't appropriate for every situation. Many believe TKD's kicking (as taught and practiced) isn't even appropriate for MOST situations.

    At this point, most TKD practitioners entering into debates with TKD detractors say something like, "Well, that's not the way we train at MY school!" or "We 'crosstrain' at my school!" (such as in Hapkido) Well, that may be true, however, the VAST majority of TKD schools and practitioners that most of us have come into contact with don't. Further, to pick nits, if TKD is so all inclusive, why would one *need* to cross train? Shouldn't all the nessasary components already be there?

    We will skip Philosophy since it is difficult to identify any particular philosophy associated specifically with TKD other then "Be a better person."

    Finally, outside of the discussion of Philosophy, Strategy, and Techniques, we should discuss the "McDojang" (McDojo) phenomenon within TKD.

    A McDojo/McDojang/McKwoon (whatever) is basically a school that will give out ranks simply to paying customers, no or little actual skill is required. it's purely and *solely* a money making venture. These schools are typically marked by certain characteristics. Among these are an extremely fast promotion rate to "Black Belt" often within two years (it should be noted that most other arts typically require 5-7 years to "Black Belt"), numerous (seemingly endless) Gup ranks (sub-black belt ranks - Kyu in Jap.) including variations within a rank (Its not uncommon to hear of "Second Grade 'Decided' Yellow Belt" in TKD and such like), lots of testing and associated / non-associated fees, long and expensive contracts (often "guaranteeing" Black Belt within a given period of time). In other words, it's basically a school scamming its students for money and making them believe it's teaching them how to effectively fight, yet, there is little legal recourse if this is true. There is no (nor should there be) government regulation or standards regarding teaching people how to "fight" yet it rankles many martial artists who feel that these unsuspecting students are being "taught" by a scam artist and really aren't learning anything even remotely effective (this launches into the age-old RMA debate on "what is effective").

    How does this apply to TKD? Well, perhaps it's just that TKD is more popular or there are more TKD schools on the average then any other style, but it seems that there is a HUGE number of TKD McDojangs turning out Black Belts who couldn't fight their way out of a wet paper bag and who are defeated by 13 year old girls (literally! as per a recent thread).

    So, put all this together and I'm sure you can see why TKD takes so much bashing.
    Peace favor your sword,
    Kirk

  2. deathblues is offline

    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    4

    Posted On:
    6/14/2011 1:13pm

    Bullshido Newbie
     

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    It's because of all those unqualified teachers who are in it for money. No martial art spirits. Curruption in WTF and bastardation of the techniques for "sports" also played a role there. I'm disgusted whenever TKD McDojang does demonstrations during city parades with some weird dances and dumbass board breaking.
  3. Donovan88 is offline

    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Central NY
    Posts
    3

    Posted On:
    12/29/2011 10:32am

    Bullshido Newbie
     Style: WTF Tae Kwon Do

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    It's just another art. I love the Olympic style and my position is if you don't want to do it, then don't, and if you don't want to watch it, then you don't have to. It is bigger than any of us and it doesn't need anyones approval. The same goes for wrestling, fencing, boxing, etc. I don't hear anyone saying boxing isn't a "complete" art. All you have to do is visit any dojang with national-level fighters and you will see the same commitment and off-the-charts skill that you see anywhere great athletes train. The "bashing" comes from people who aren't good at it and are jealous, so they pad their ego with "I could just tackle him at the knees; TKD guys are helpless once you get past their kicks", and that's not the point. The style doesn't make the person; the person is going to put his personal stamp on whatever style he does.
  4. It is Fake is offline
    It is Fake's Avatar

    Administrator

    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Posts
    34,104

    Posted On:
    12/29/2011 10:34am

    staff
     Style: xingyi

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    No, it is bigger than you. It takes "us" to make an art viable. Ask all of the arts, that have been los to antiquity, how much bigger they are than "us."

    The "jealous" excuse is old and tired.
  5. Vorpal is offline
    Vorpal's Avatar

    Senior Member

    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    A Hell of my own making
    Posts
    3,078

    Posted On:
    12/29/2011 10:46am

    Join us... or die
     Style: BJJ

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    In Korea I met TKD guys who could kick and puch hard, with speed and accuracy and who were very evasive and hard to hit. In the US TKD instructors found that people didn't like getting hit, would pay $$ for undeserved promotions and could be fooled into thinking they were Bruce Lee while doing light touch sparring. Those students now teach TKD. That's why it sucks.
  6. It is Fake is offline
    It is Fake's Avatar

    Administrator

    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Posts
    34,104

    Posted On:
    12/29/2011 11:02am

    staff
     Style: xingyi

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    I've sparred and met good TKDers. Large number were not American.
  7. Chili Pepper is online now
    Chili Pepper's Avatar

    Senior Member

    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    2,261

    Posted On:
    12/29/2011 1:56pm


     Style: Siling Labuyo Arnis

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by Donovan88 View Post
    The "bashing" comes from people who aren't good at it and are jealous, so they pad their ego with "I could just tackle him at the knees; TKD guys are helpless once you get past their kicks", and that's not the point.
    I could've figured out you were new here just by reading the above. Good job telling us all that you're butt-hurt. Not such a good job refuting any points listed by the OP.
  8. Permalost is offline
    Permalost's Avatar

    pro nonsense self defense

    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    San Diego
    Posts
    12,683

    Posted On:
    12/29/2011 3:03pm

    supporting member
     Style: FMA, dumbek, Indian clubs

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by deathblues View Post
    It's because of all those unqualified teachers who are in it for money.
    I'm pretty sure it's because of the reasons in the article.
  9. chemsoldier is offline

    Registered Member

    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Posts
    32

    Posted On:
    12/29/2011 4:05pm


     Style: Judo

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    It isnt just that it puts "emphasis" on high kicks. That makes it sound like the instructor harps on it to the students or that is just something pushed in the manual of TKD or something. Structure is extremely powerful and when the competition structure gives huge points for a kick to the head, half as many points for kicks and punches to the body and bupkiss for hand techniques to the head and kicks below the waste (I think those are banned actually). That is closer to "actively discourages" anything other than kicks above the waist.

    While that technically is "emphasis" to my mind that structural element goes way beyond the common usage of emphasis.

    In reference to foreign students of TKD, I took TKD for about 3 months way back when* and I recall sparring with most folks and their feet just making a bit of noise as it hit the chest protector, once in a while it pushed me back a bit if the angle was good. There was one female TKD practitioner though, she had done it for years and most recently had done two years of it in Korea while stationed there. Her kicks seemed to go right through the protector, they bloody hurt. So I would readily believe that outside the US schools may be more likely to turn out much tougher folks.

    *Mea Culpa- No I did not quit TKD because I thought it sucked. I stopped attending when I moved and prioritized other things in my life before martial arts. In retrospect, since I did no martial training afterwards till recently I wish I had stayed with it.
  10. Donovan88 is offline

    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Central NY
    Posts
    3

    Posted On:
    12/30/2011 10:06am

    Bullshido Newbie
     Style: WTF Tae Kwon Do

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    I know you mean well pepper, but I was referring to something mentioned in the post:
    "That is, TKD teaches a strategy that launches kicks at the opponent *above* the level of the waist. The feeling of many is that this leaves the TKD exponent in a position of weak balance that can easily be taken advantage of by even unskilled opponents." Again, that's not the point. That is the point of learning a style and becoming good at it, just to hone a skill for it's own sake.
    Maybe you should read the entire original post; it's rather interesting. As for your comment on my personal state; your imagination will never be a good substitute for the facts.
    It's not that TKD sucks; McDojos and unscrupulous money-grubbing instructors suck. There is nothing to bash when it comes to a school with a bunch of competitors who are focused on Nationals. So they can't wrestle and a boxer can't kick, BJJ doesn't do chun chain punches and a ninja could death-touch all of them, but it doesn't mean that they aren't skilled, focused, and training hard and let's not forget that if tkd has made it to the Olympics then it's not going anywhere and it will be here after we move on to something else. There are just a lot of instructors who want to make a living as the patriarch of their own school. The WTF TKD guys have realized that if they only cater to training competitors, the they won't be able to make any better a living than a guy who owns a boxing gym (unless they are in a big metropolitan area with wealthy parents) because the training will scare the $ away. So they water down the TKD, throw in extra belts with other forms, half a hapkido cirriculum (but no certification and a cirriculum not recognized outside that instructors fiefdom), and they find a way to be all things to all people. We all know that these people generally aren't interested in conditioning or hard effort, just a social club, and learn enough to get themselves hurt.
    I can't bash TKD, but I have to bash a school somewhere out there who was training al Queda; I saw it this morning on CNN. They showed a seized terrorist video of the guys in a training camp kicking paddles with WTF/Olympic techniques. That either means TKD sucks or it's the most awesome and deadly art in any cave anywhere.
Page 1 of 4 1 234 LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

Powered by vBulletin™© contact@vbulletin.com vBulletin Solutions, Inc. 2011 All rights reserved.