The Development of Technique and Movement

The purpose of Choong Sil Kwan Taekwondo is to develop an individual’s mental and physical well- being through a highly stylized and deliberate method of rigorous martial arts training. The result of this training is an empowering sense of self-worth, and the ability to control one’s physical state and personal destiny.

            The “Four Concepts” of Choong Sil Taekwondo affect the development of each movement.  How can a philosophy be responsible for good technique?  At first, it does not seem plausible that any logic or philosophical approach could affect movements within the framework of the Taekwondo patterns.  From a logical perspective, every philosophy must affect our actions, or the philosophy should be evaluated and changed.   Over the past several years, I have seen the positive effect of the Choong Sil philosophy, and found the results to be both rewarding and stimulating, not only for me personally, but also for the students.  In this section of the thesis, I want to examine each of the four concepts of the Choong Sil Taekwondo Philosophy, see how they relate to movements within the pattern system, producing both grace and power.

IMAGINATION

In the initial stage of philosophical development, students must use their imagination to set goals beyond their current limitations and, from this, visualize their achievements in advance.  This, in turn, strengthens their belief system to the point that specific goals are possible and obtainable.

 Every student, new or advanced, has a concept (idea or picture) of how each movement should appear prior to their executing that movement.  They

watch the instructor carefully, listen to his/her description of the movement, and then perform that movement based upon their imagination and 

concept of that particular movement.   Essentially, every movement is affected by an individual’s mental view, or imagination, prior to its execution.  

Viewing each movement of the pattern individually and seeing them beautifully laced together with the preceding and following movements,

enhances our overall perception of that pattern.    Each movement then becomes an individualized and creative interpretation of how my imagination

“sees” it being performed.  While practicing each movement in this manner, I am able to evaluate each movement, and make changes, as my

 perception or imagination is redefined.  I must use my imagination to set goals for each movement, beyond my current limitations (mental or

physical), and attempt to visualize the finished product, not only in my mind, but also in actuality.    During this process, I am also led to the point of

believing that the technique is attainable and even somewhat perfectible.   Although complete perfection is not totally attainable, there is a continuing

sense of being involved in the process of change, moving toward perfecting movement through the use of my imagination and conception of each

movement.  

            I realize that understanding the “Imagination” philosophy helps the student realize greater attainment in their life than just the application of movement.  However, within the structure of the pattern system, exemplifying life, we find that each movement is a small but important part of the overall development of the individual.   We define our lives by setting goals and realizing achievement.  The patterns and applications of movements in turn reflect our personality and view of life in general.  Imagination is the initial stage of development, not only in the mental process of the student, but also for redefining their life goals and ethics.   This would be true for the development of movements and the patterns. 

            Our philosophy of life subjects us to applications in every area of living: ethics, morality, relationships, recognizing the structure of authority, and innumerable other concepts and ideas.  Without a good use of imagination, we would bounce around without purpose or resolve.   Once we view life properly, using our imagination, we are better able to conceive right attitudes and speech, which reflect our perception of life.  This concept of imagination rightly reflects the individual’s understanding of right and wrong, and also, their understanding of movement.  

INSPIRATION

With goals firmly in mind, the students must learn to inspire themselves into action as they develop a sense of self-worth.  Without this, one may never strive for success as they may feel that they do not deserve the rewards that accompany achievement.

             Being inspired into action is an important part of continuing progress.   It is acutely obvious that  for our technique to be powerful and sound,

we must have a goal fixed in our mind, one that we “see” as an end result.   Students observe other black belts, some more powerful than

themselves, and are inspired to achieve, setting higher goals.   As I watch my instructor, I am awed by the power he generates.  He is approximately

the same size, yet possesses a power of technique that is amazing.  I hope to achieve that level of power in my training.  To accomplish this daunting

task, I must have success in the development of technique.   Achieving a certain sense of success in our movements, and sensing power develop,

we are inspired to continue the process of learning.   It is also apparent,  that in the process of being inspired, our imagination continues to challenge

us.   Both imagination and inspiration work together, compelling us to work harder, and allowing us to devote ourselves to the task at hand. 

With a continuing success, there is a sense of purpose, hope, reward and value.  Hence, our evaluation of purpose and worth is increased.  As we increase in this important area, our technique is empowered as a result of our constant efforts to achieve.  We are honored to have achieved a certain sense of success, and we may be surprised and yet pleased with the advancement of our movements.  With this sense of achievement, we develop a deeper sense of personal value and worth.   Each personal achievement in movement challenges us to strive for further success.  Each area of success develops a deeper necessity to perform and receive the reward that accompanies hard work.   The combination of imagination and the personal development of self-worth functions as a catalyst, stimulating harder work and a greater desire for achievement.   This is absolutely essential to progress in the art of Taekwondo, or in any other endeavor of life.

            Every movement is inspired as a result of achievement, which is a direct result of the initial use of our imagination.  To facilitate power, there must be an impetus to growth.  

To grow as a person, or in the art, we must have a sense of success, providing more incentive to excel.    Our personal reward is best described as reaching our goals and desiring more, as we set new goals.

Actualization

Actualization is taking the first step and entering into the process of the work and reward system.  The development of a strong work ethic is the most important element in this philosophy.  Even the most average of people can achieve excellence with a positive work ethic.

             Imagination leads to inspiration and we begin to see the evidence of personal success and achievement.  Each step forward is a step in the

process of successful increments in life.  Each successful step leads to another area of success, and, because of this advancement, the rewards are

significant.   Receiving rewards (rank, etc.), we experience the profound implications of the work and reward system.   The more our technique

improves, and the higher rank we achieve, the more we are challenged to develop a greater work ethic.  This work ethic is a stimulus to personal

growth, not only in power and strength, but also in movement.   The development of a strong work ethic affects areas of life and strengthens our

desire to achieve and work through areas of life, which would normally hold us back.  Our instructor observes our progress and announces our next

test date, and we are stimulated to further advancement.  It is the resulting improvement in our technique, which allows us to arrive at the

next step in the progress of development.  

Realization

“Realization refers to the attainment of one’s goals.”  This statement provokes thought, and stimulates thinking.  It is the cornerstone for the rest of the proposed philosophical statement.  First, we must make the assumption that a person has actually attained their goal or goals, and that they have attained these goals over time.  They have worked hard and put in tedious hours and labor to attain a certain position or rank, which establishes self-respect in their own eyes.   They have achieved, and then recognized that achievement, providing for themselves a sense of satisfaction and hope of future growth and achievement.  This simply defines the essence of self-worth.    The word “attainment” promotes the concept that the student had achieved an integral part in his/her advancement, and, therefore, is likely to advance further.  This truth naturally directs the student.  It would seem that the most natural resulting event in the student’s life would be to strive for further achievement.  To further achieve, the student must set new goals, take on great responsibilities, and see himself as continuing through levels of success in the future, realizing that growth is a constant and never ending endeavor.

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