HSTS ALL DAY SELF-DEFENCE TRAINING
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Described as a little of an oxymoron as the whole of Tae-Kwon-Do in itself is indeed self-defence, the combination of fundamental movements, patterns, conditioning, sparring are all designed to lead to the ability to defend oneself, however there is another element within Tae Kwon-Do that refers to Self Defence Techniques directly (Hosin Sool).

 

For the purposes of the seminar Self Defence within Taekwon-Do came under the heading Release from a Grab, the ways in which to do this were then sub-headed Releasing Moves, Breaking Moves and Direct Attacks.

 

Although it is always best that the vigilant Taekwon-Do practitioner never finds themselves in such as position as to be grabbed or attacked whilst in a compromised position such as lying on the ground, it is vital that techniques are known and practiced to deal with such situations should they ever arise.  One of the main requirements to be able to defend oneself in these situations is self-belief, sometimes called self-confidence, confidence in your own abilities and knowledge, not to dismiss the humble nature of a true Taekwon-Do practitioner, but to realise that the years of training will work should the need for them ever arise, provided of course that you train properly.

 

To start this process of overcoming our own in-built humility we were encouraged to perform patterns, as always with imaginary opponents, only this time to try and monitor the effectiveness of the moves we perform would they work? - it was important at this stage that we felt within ourselves that yes they would.

 

To emphasise this further, kick shields were deployed and partnered pad work commenced, however rather than holding the pads in the usual way to diffuse some of the power being delivered before reaching the targets, the pads were placed directly against the parts of the body being attacked, in this way the pad holder could get a much more precise indication as to whether the techniques being delivered would be effective or not, it was apparent from the reactions of those participating that the techniques were truly effective, this came as pleasant surprise and confirmation to all those attending.

 

Partner work then continued through brief exposures to three step, two step and one step sparing in order to maximise partner coordination before building finally towards

Model sparing where partnered pairs were encouraged to develop their own fight scenarios in front of the training class, these were great fun to develop and perform and many incorporated some of the techniques learned earlier in the day, they also taught valuable lessons in timing, angle and distance of attack and defence.

 

Mr Horan VI, then took the seminar through many Self Defence scenarios utilising a mixture of releases, breaks and direct attacks, even some pressure points were tapped into, literally! Standing scenarios then moved on to kneeling, sitting on chairs opposite or next to an attacker such as on a train or bus and defence from the floor (lying down) as if you had fallen and were being attacked from above, some of which simulations were extremely realistic and thought provoking.

 

Later, Take Downs were introduced after some break-fall practice and numerous defences against bar brawl type attacks were considered, this then lead nicely onto Counter Take Downs whereby the person being taken down utilised the momentum against his attacker, taking him down into a roll instead, again all very effective and inspiring.

 

Taekwon-Do is a martial art without weapons, save those you are born with and develop through your training, however it is vital that defence against attackers with Weapons, such as a Knife or a Stick (referred to as a Bow in the encyclopaedia) be practiced, especially with todays youth culture promoting the carrying of such devices.  In Taekwon-Do we are encouraged to defend against the attacking tool being used, to disarm if possible but never once disarmed to take or touch the weapon used against us and certainly never to then use it back against the attacker.  We covered keeping distance against a knife attack, extending our blocking techniques to allow for the additional attacking length and to close distance against certain knife attacks or a stick, stopping it before it gains full momentum, or intercepting the weapon once the momentum has passed.  In the free play time before the seminar came to its close, it could be seen that weapon attacks should always be taken very seriously indeed and avoided at all costs, but that when unavoidable if practiced properly, Taekwon-Do gives you all the skills and techniques necessary to defend yourself against them.

 

If you were one of the unfortunate students who missed this inspirational seminar, I urge you to book earlier the next time the opportunity arises.

 

Yours in Taekwon-Do

Written by: Andrew Botwright IV - 7th February 2012

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