Tactical Hapkido?

Discussion in 'Hapkido' started by folks, Nov 23, 2007.

  1. iron_ox

    iron_ox Jungki Kwan Midwest

    Hello Jon,

    New direction that Combat Hapkido is taught or Orthodox Hapkido?
  2. Thomas

    Thomas Combat Hapkido/Taekwondo

    We fall into different camps here - personally I think the additions and modifications that GM Ji Han-jae and GM Kim Moo-hong made is what turned Choi Dojunim's Yawara/DRAJJ/whatever into what is currently seen as Hapkido.

    So what makes Choi Dojunim's art "Hapkido" and not DRAJJ? What you study under GM Lim Hyun-soo - is it "Hapkido" or is it "DRAJJ"?

    I still stand by the notion that "Hapkido" covers a wide variety of iterations of the art - everything from what Choi Yong-sool Dojunim and GM Suh Beok-sup were doing to what GM Ji Han Jae and GM Kim Moo-hong were doing to the offshoots like Kuk Sool, Hwarang-do, and Teuk Gong Moo Sool. Each comes directly from the teachings of Choi Yong-sool Dojunim and has the same basic operating system and yet contains a whole different outlook (especially to the extreme of the fancy kicks and acrobatic breakfalls)

    No need for digs here.

    We've discussed it before. The naming has caused quite a bit of problem, mainly because he wanted to acknowledge Hapkido as the base operating system of the art (which it is) and to differentiate it from other 'traditional' groups by adding the term 'Combat'.

    As far as GM P's background - it's a pretty good one. On paper, he holds rank from GM Mike Wollmershauser (whom you know and who trained directly under Choi Yong-sool Dojunim), GM Myung Kwang-shik (trained directly under GM Ji Han-jae and Choi Yong-sool Dojunim) and GM Seo In-sun (ranked in Hapkido by Choi Yong-sool Dojunim). On the mat, from my experience, he's very good and an excellent instructor as well. He has great organizational and promotional skills. I've had a lot of great martial artists to compare him to and he measures up pretty well, in my opinion.

    OK... I don't mind dropping this line of discussion. It's just that sometimes your zeal towards bashing "unorthodox" styles and your blunt expression of personal opinion can agitate. Now and again, I do feel compelled to debate a statement here or there. :cool:
  3. Instructor_Jon

    Instructor_Jon Effectiveness First

    At the end of the day I see Kevin's fixation with orthodoxy as really being moot. People belong to various organizations and choose to train with various teachers for their own reasons.

    The focus of Tactical Hapkido is not GM Rodemaker. It's Hapkido and God. I have great admiration for the man and I appreciate what he has done for me, but he wouldn't want me focused on something that isn't important.

    Regarding the individual movements they are in my humble opinion very much the same as Combat Hapkido. I sometimes practice with friends from that org and we find we are essentially doing the same things.

    To show an analog I would say that Tactical Hapkido and Combat Hapkido are more similer to each other than say ITF TKD and WTF TKD. In other words, our lego's fit together.

    MY OPINION, take it or leave it, is that GM Rodemaker split from ICHF and started his own thing because he wanted to utilize Hapkido as part of a Christian outreach. He wanted to use it to strengthen Christians and to attract people to church.

    I suspect that really wasn't what GM Pelligrini had in mind. So they decided to part ways.

    In regards to rank.. In my humble opinion anybody who has trained in an art for over a decade is fit teach and lead regardless of the color belt you tie around his waist. Most of us have two decades under our belt and many of us have three. We all agree that GM Rodemaker is the head of THA.

    If other people in other organizations don't like it...we don't really care.
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2013
  4. iron_ox

    iron_ox Jungki Kwan Midwest

    Again, other than adding kicks that do not add to the combat effectiveness of the art, you fail to mention one thing that either of these men added to make the art different.

    And the "whatever" was so unique in Korea, and elsewhere that over 100 variants of the art exist today - it is you that does not want to see that you cannot add to something when you don't know it.

    Choi Dojunim's art was complete as he taught it and of course what I train in with Grandmaster Lim is Hapkido. It is clearly different from DRAJJ, in both intent and structure.

    No they do not operate the same. In many cases not even close. The fanciful creation of the Suh/Seo brothers has very little in connection with Hapkido, for example, except that the techniques "look" similar...and in many cases, while you might say they come directly from the teachings of Choi Dojunim, none of the men you listed were around him long enough to learn the complete syllabus by any means.

    There is NO DIG here, you brought up the naming thing, I am agreeing with you, again, more like a distraction to keep the main topic at bay I feel.

    If that was his goal, so be it, but its kinda like saying "blue" blue to me...

    Thomas, I do respect you for what you do, but this information needs to be put into some real perspective please.
    A first degree black belt, and honorary second dan from GM Mike Wollershauser.
    A fifth degree black belt from GM Myung Kwang-Sik; who had NO rank from Choi Dojunim - and who was ranked by Ji, someone who had a third degree black belt from Choi Dojunim.
    And finally GM Seo In-Sun (Kuk Sool GM) - who has a 1st degree black belt from Choi Dojunim, and a third degree black belt in Hapkido issued somewhere - hardly even a master of the art.
    You tend to be so through in your examination of material until you say things like the above.

    I have no frame of reference except what others that have trained with him have told me, so my personal bias is irrelevant here.

    WHAT? Until a few years ago, the lies from some junior ranked students of Choi Dojunim had everyone believing a guy with a gold belt invented the art...and tell me how anything I say is "personal opinion"?? YOU say that Hapkido is some concoction from a bunch of men with low rank that created the art, I say, prove the supposition - but no one ever can, so it is your "opinion" vs. training, rank and fact.
    And how is it being blunt to ask the rank and training of someone that is claiming to teach an art I have been involved with for more than 30 years? But more than that to have made up their own version and say they made the original better - when all the information indicates they never learned the original in the first place.
    Your statement here is designed to be inflammatory; where is what I said personal opinion, when you start most of the paragraphs of this post with statements like "I stand on the notion"?
    I don't like the "notion" of people learning bad technique from unqualified instructors - so if that equals "zeal" - guilty as charged! But, before you try to label me as someone just out to bash - read what I have written and find an answer to the questions that I pose - but as always, I do enjoy the debate, thanks!
  5. iron_ox

    iron_ox Jungki Kwan Midwest

    Fixation? No, I use a standard set out from the man that created the art, and use the rank and training experience of those who claim rank to measure what is being "sold" - the Founder of Tactical Hapkido claims "rank" - that is a measure by which we should all be able to use...and I am not asking for a relation to orthodoxy, just information regarding rank and training of someone claiming to have invented something.

    Also, you mention not 4 posts ago that there is an effort in Tactical Hapkido to move toward orthodoxy - really? And you would say that after 34 years training in an art that you want to move closer to I am fixated? Wow.

    Agreed. So why can we not get some transparency as to the background of the founder? Typically, this type of secrecy - JON, YOU don't even know the background fully, is more akin to cults than solid martial arts.

    Of course it is! Otherwise he would train with a recognized group, get more rank, and he could still lead as he saw fit.

    Again, this is about a tangible thing, rank and training, not anyone's personality. Not important? I sure would want to know the background of someone that is teaching me martial arts! That is important.


    To each his own. A long as people are aware of this, seems fair.

    Again, this thread was to examine the rank and training of someone that claims they founded a new style of Hapkido. So, you feel after ten years or so that is enough? I don't care about the belt color, it is the training and rank that are the thing we can use as a benchmark here, but Jon you are even unaware of this from someone you are defending...I find that odd.

    How about some transparency for NEW people? Don't they have a right to know about the training and ranking of a man that claims he is a "grandmaster"? Just curious - thank you in advance...
  6. Instructor_Jon

    Instructor_Jon Effectiveness First

    I frankly dislike terms like Grandmaster this and Master that... We are all just teachers and students, all of us. Some of us have administrative functions and are responsible for more than one school. Some of us have political functions and are responsible for an entire organization.

    A man starts a business, it's his business, he is the top dog. It doesn't matter who he worked for before he started his business or if they had a difference of opinion.

    If I hire a man to hang gutters on my house I don't verify that he comes from an ancient line of gutter hangers that goes back to the beginning to the very person that invented gutters. Can he do a good job of hanging gutters and is his price reasonable, that's the main thing. If I have a gutter problem down the road, can I count on him to come back and make things right. If so then we are in business.

    In this world some people think the best dog's are purebred and some people think the average mutt is generally a pretty good dog and often has a lot fewer issues.

    If the moves look the same, it's likely they ARE the same. If it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck, chances are..it's a duck.

    I don't know if at this early date Chon Sul Kwan is a different style. To me it's Hapkido.

    I do see some innovations. While our moves are much like other Hapkido schools, the order in which we teach them make it a little bit easier to learn. There is a certain logic in the way one of our lessons builds into the next lesson that I find is very intuitive. I haven't seen that before. I grant you my experience with other kinds of Hapkido are limited.

    Grand Master Rodemaker has done his best to bring Hapkido to people. It's not a bad thing. He's a good teacher and his Hapkido rocks!
  7. Instructor_Jon

    Instructor_Jon Effectiveness First


    What if you happened to be a young student in Korea when Choi Yong Sul first arrived and started teaching. You ask him where he learned and who he learned from and he says I learned in Japan from a guy named Takeda.

    You call the DRAJJ school in Japan and ask about Choi's claim and somebody in the background yells, "that Korean guy...NEVER heard of him."

    His pedegree is uncertain, would you train with him?
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2013
  8. peterc8455

    peterc8455 Valued Member

    Transparency (and full disclosure) would be nice but if it hasn't come after more than 12 years it's probably unlikely.

    IME with people like this it would shatter the illusion they have created and many of these organizations do tend to be about the individual.

    Now I'm not saying he isn't a good person but IMO there are some ironies here with the organization and the religious focus.

    He states in an article "There are young adults who will never step into a church, but they will take free martial arts classes, A lot who take martial arts are seeking, and ... we can share the love of Jesus with them.".

    I just hope prospective students are told beforehand what they are going to be shared with. :p
  9. Instructor_Jon

    Instructor_Jon Effectiveness First

    Yes, this sums up what we are doing quite nicely, thank you.
  10. iron_ox

    iron_ox Jungki Kwan Midwest

    This is the same argument that all the variants make when their "claim" to Hapkido is questioned.

    Choi Dojunim was consistent and open about his back ground, and his material remained consistent through his lifetime, with a few changes to suit Korean sensibility.

    Would I train with him? Yes. Why? Because he stood on his word about his training and personal history.
  11. iron_ox

    iron_ox Jungki Kwan Midwest

    Frankly, it sounds somewhat like bait and switch...but again, as long as people know they are going to be indoctrinated with something unrelated to martial arts...that then falls to them to decide.
  12. Instructor_Jon

    Instructor_Jon Effectiveness First

    Whereas I would train with him because he is awesome.
  13. peterc8455

    peterc8455 Valued Member

    Fair enough but they might not all be seeking Jesus.

    The above makes it sound kind of like a "bait and switch".

    You offer them free martial arts classes but instead they get Jesus?
  14. peterc8455

    peterc8455 Valued Member

    I was thinking the same thing.
  15. Instructor_Jon

    Instructor_Jon Effectiveness First

    No....they get free martial arts and Jesus. :)
  16. Instructor_Jon

    Instructor_Jon Effectiveness First

    A surprising number of them keep coming back too. In spite of everything.
  17. Giovanni

    Giovanni Well-Known Member Supporter

    what does jesus have to do with martial arts?
  18. peterc8455

    peterc8455 Valued Member

    This is disingenuous on so many levels but I think you know that.
  19. Instructor_Jon

    Instructor_Jon Effectiveness First

    Nothing really.
  20. Instructor_Jon

    Instructor_Jon Effectiveness First

    I guess the idea is if you want to interest more people in church you have activities at church that are interesting to people.

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