Real Hapkido in Boston area

Discussion in 'Hapkido' started by Mendes0010, Aug 7, 2012.

  1. Mendes0010

    Mendes0010 New Member

    Does anyone know of a good Hapkido school in the Boston area? Im looking to start into it and Ive done some research that it's not to easy to find an authentic one. Also, if you know of sparring regulations in the school could you say so? Thanks.
  2. Thomas

    Thomas Combat Hapkido/Taekwondo

    What is there in the area?

    By the way, many Hapkido schools that will identify themselves as "authentic" probably won't do a lot of sparring. Make sure you ask about that specifically when you do your first few lessons (ask for some trial ones).
  3. erogers

    erogers New Member

    Just off a google search I found this place. I'm not familiar with the lineage beyond GM Kim, Myung Yong. He is the founder of my lineage, and I can tell you it's a legitimate Hapkido kwan.

    As far as sparring regs, there's no formalized competition so sparring for our kwan amounts to boxing, kickboxing, takedowns, ground defense. Not for sport.
  4. Herbo

    Herbo Valued Member

    If you're looking for hard sparring then from the videos alot of this schools training look to be wrist grabby stuff, so probably not what you're after.
  5. erogers

    erogers New Member

    Self defense techniques are taught from wrist grabs, clothing grabs, belt grabs, etc... Sparring is taught from a very modern kickboxing type of curriculum. Punch combos, with kicking, and takedowns. This is pretty consistent with most Hapkido schools in the US.
  6. Herbo

    Herbo Valued Member

    What level of contact and sparring gear is used? Also, do you have practitioners from other arts come in to test how your sparring works against people not of the same style?
  7. Mendes0010

    Mendes0010 New Member

    Theres a lot in the area from BJJ, Tang Soo Do, lots of taekwondo, Ninjitsu, jujitsu, Kenpo, Kung Fu, almost everything. Ive even found some schools that say Hapkido but Im not sure what their about. Some of the schools say Hapkido/Aikido and when I click on the description it only describes Aikido. To be honest Im not really sure what "real" Hapkido is. Ive only seen a few videos on youtube of tournaments and such and also researched into it a bit. I was hoping to be able to tell the difference.
  8. Mendes0010

    Mendes0010 New Member

    Yeah I saw that site also, but it says that they dont have an official dojang yet. Ones coming in 2013 as to what they said but theres not a lot of info on it. Also are there different types of Hapkido that involve sparring. I saw on youtube a video of Korean Hapkido where they did full contact sparring. I dont expect anyone in the US will try full contact, from what Ive heard they water it down for safety. But someone has to spar still at least. Then again Im not sure
  9. erogers

    erogers New Member

    Full contact with head gear, chest protector, instep pads, 16 oz gloves, cup, mouth piece. No, we don't bring in outside competition. Most schools aren't going to. We're not training to be Anderson Silva. Just sharpen our skills to aid in self defense. If anyone wanted more in depth stand up, you can always cross train.
  10. Thomas

    Thomas Combat Hapkido/Taekwondo

    Depends what you are looking for.
    If you want conditioning and contact sparring, check out the Taekwondo (stand up) or the BJJ (ground) in my opinion.

    My advice is to go and check out each school that looks appealing and stay with the one that best fits you.
    Long story short - the basic system of Hapkido comes from Aikijujitsu (same birth art as Aikido), so there are similarities. Once Hapkido began to develop in Korea, some of the main players added stuff to it (while other didn't), leading to quite a few varieties. As the art spread, it got modified and added to by lots of people. Nowadays, each Hapkido group shares similarities (in core operating system and techniques) but may be very different in their expression. As far as "lineage" goes, they should be able to trace it back to Choi Yong Sool Dojunim.

    As an art, I find it very valuable for self defense. In every version of Hapkido I've studied, there has been a lot of training in falling (breakfalls), striking/kicking, and situational self defense (responses to different types of attacks). The key elements I enjoy are the focus on level of force (options for everything from disengaging to death) and practicality. I find that 'generally', Hapkido students tend to be fairly well rounded in all aspects of self defense in a general way, although not as skilled as specialists (e.g. Hapkido ground survival/ground grappling is no where in the same league as BJJ, but there is a core of basics).

    Most of the schools I am familiar with tend to have less focus on sparring, ground grappling, and realistic weapons defense. Again, they may have the elements but I haven't seen much in a "deep" manner.

    It depends what you are looking for. I would ask for a few trial days to check it out and see if you like it.

    Check out this (older) article:
    as well as

    What are you looking for in a school
  11. Mendes0010

    Mendes0010 New Member

    Im mainly looking for a school that shows discipline and just teaches the style correctly. I want a school that is fun but at the same time knows what there doing, I probably will have to go into the school and question them for it but I'd like to know my stuff before I get the answers from them. The thing that bothered me was I wasnt sure if they were mixing Hapkido and Aikido at some schools and was unsure if that was common or not. I know there similar but at the bottom line they are two different styles. Basically I want a Hapkido school that 1. Teaches it correctly (which is why Im asking here. So that I'll know or see a difference), 2. I want to make sure like you said it's practical, and 3. Is fun but serious when needed.

    Thanks for the replies, by the way and those videos they really clear a few things up Im actually considering Taekwondo as another option. Ive done Tang Soo Do but never finished and I know where some schools for that are but I want to have options.
  12. Thomas

    Thomas Combat Hapkido/Taekwondo

    Good luck.

    Keep in mind that there are quite a few different styles of Hapkido out there, some good, some bad, and both types are sometimes slagged by members of other groups. There are a lot of different organizations that claim to be the "real" thing.

    In essence Hapkido is an art modified from Aikijujitsu (a Japanese art from which Aikido also comes from). The person who brought to Korea and is looked upon as the "founder" is Choi Yong Sool. Later, it picked up some influences from Yudo (Judo) and then later from various kicking traditions. Some of the innovations/modifcations came at various times so you have senior "Hapkido" masters who founded their own styles but they come about during various stages of Hapkido development. This is why you see so many different Hapkido groups out there (as well as Hapkido influenced arts like Hwarangdo and Kuk Sool).

    What you probably should ask are the following:
    1. How long have you been studying Hapkido and who is your instructor? You may wish to ask how their lineage goes back to Choi Yong Sool Dojunim.
    2. What kwan is this and/or what federation/association do you belong to? Some of the bigger ones include Jung Ki Kwan, Jin Jung Kwan, Sin Moo, and Jae Nam Moo Sool (International Hapkido Federation - although this one has done quite a bit of sharing with Aikido).
    3. Ask the instructor how classes are run and what the priorities are. Some schools do lots of flashy kicks and acrobatic breakfalls, some don't. Some focus on realistic self defense, some not so much.
    4. Can I do some trial classes first? All the best names and lineage in the world doesn't mean anything if the classes don't fit you.

    Do you have any links to the ones in your area?
  13. Mendes0010

    Mendes0010 New Member

    Thank you so much for this information. It really has cleared up a lot. What I did was look for dojangs on dojo finder.


    - Theres one called the Center for Asian Martial Arts. I emailed them since they have no website but they havent shot me one back. Im just gonna have to call them

    - - This one I think has no dojang up yet but they will sometime in 2013 as they've said.

    These are all Ive found so far in the area
  14. erogers

    erogers New Member

    That's really interesting considering the size of a city like Boston, but Hapkido can be notoriously hard to find.
  15. Mendes0010

    Mendes0010 New Member

    Yeah thats what I was saying to myself. They have a very vast selection of martial arts but the only one I cant seem to find a good amount in Boston is Hapkido. I was thinking it was scarce just from that issue.
  16. Thomas

    Thomas Combat Hapkido/Taekwondo

    From the website, I'd be a bit leary. There doesn't seem to be a real mention of who GM "Iron"Kim learned Hapkido from. He seems to have learned various Chinese systems in Korea and is teaching them here under an umbrella of "Oomyungdo". It might be very good, but I would want to know much more specificially about his Hapkido background and whether they teach Aikido and Hapkido as the same thing (they aren't).

    The other warning signs I see (keep in mind that all of these may be the website creator's misunderstandings or simply designed to attract people) are things like Master Kim practicing in the solitude of the "mountains and ocean areas of Asia", his seemingly strict control over trademarks, title of "Champion of All Asia", and his choice of whether to be the next Bruce Lee (movies) or teaching. His bio doesn't give a lot of dates of training or instructors for the various arts. It notes that he came to the US to teach Kong Soo (Do)... which is the Korean term for Japanese Karate.

    In all fairness, it might be a great school. There are a lot of arts offered, including Hapkido as well as the very, very rare Ship Pal Gi. It would be worth checking out, but I would watch carefully and ask some questions on lineage if that is important to you.

    The Wiki article that comes up lists some disturbing things ( granted, it is a Wikipedia article and thus cannot be trusted 100%.
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2012
  17. iron_ox

    iron_ox Jungki Kwan Midwest

    I believe this is the name man (Iron Kim) that was run out of Illinois for everything from tax evasion to charges of running a cult. Avoid this place.
  18. Mendes0010

    Mendes0010 New Member

    Yeah when I visited the site it kind of gave me some red flags that some things didnt sound right for one. I just wasnt sure on it, but like you said, it never hurts to check it out. Might be interesting. Though the wiki may be true. Im not sure but I'll look into it to see what the bottom line is on this school.
  19. Mendes0010

    Mendes0010 New Member

    When did this all happen and is it the same instructor? Thanks for the reply.
  20. embra

    embra Valued Member

    Just looking at the wikipedia reference, it seems that Korean MA is just as much of a splodgey mess as CMA.

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