Wednesday, September 16, 2009


There are any number of books (including mine and Grandmaster Chun's) and DVDs concerning taekwondo on the market today. Some of these have obvious, educational merit. However, since taekwondo is primarily physical in nature, how valuable are these editorial and visual contributions to your practice as opposed to training first hand with your master?


  1. When I am learning a new Poomse, I do find it helpful to refer to some of the video's available on Youtube as a way of reminding me of basic sequencing, but NOTHING, can replace the personal instruction of a Taekwondo Master. And we at Chosun are fortunate,(blessed?) to have Master Cook as our instructor, to teach us not only the fundementals of each form when we begin, but also the deeper meaning and nuance in each element of a forum. We are made aware of how to direct the force of Ki energy in our movements, adding power and focus to each element of Taekwondo. For this, you need to be there!
    Books, videos, magazines and such are helpful to reinforce what we learn in class, but without the first hand training I think it would be unfocused motion without ki.

    Nancy Garrett

  2. I agree with Nancy. Books and videos can be good reinforcements but no substitutes for "hands on training" from a good instructor.

  3. I agree as well, good comment, Nancy.


  4. You cannot become proficient in the martial arts through books, dvd's etc, but when you combine this with the hands on training of being at the dojang and training with your master, you can definitely benefit from it. Grandmaster Chuns and Master Cooks books are awesome for reference pertaining to the philosophies of the art as well as certain techniques to a point.. I myself use youtube mainly for poomsae reference only.. I find it helps me immensely to refresh my memory while I'm away from the dojang when my master is not available for me but with this said, nothing beats training at the dojang with your master.
    P.S. I agree with Nancy 150% about being fortunate and blessed to have Master Cook as our fearless leader.. I'm extremely grateful that I'm able to train at Chosun.

  5. When first learning a new poomsae I find books and a few DVD or internet sites quite valuable in introducing the sequence of moves. I feel more comfortable reviewing Kwanjanim's books prior to recieving the initial instruction in the dojang. Otherwise I feel a bit overwhelmed trying to remember each move/sequence.The training aids whether from books or DVDs provide visulization in the early stages and allow me to concentrate on the instruction and details I recieve in the dojang. As I progress with the personal instruction the training aids are used less and more on the occassions that I require a reminder. The details,hard and soft elements, um and yang and philosophy can only be recieved in the dojang. One more thought... references such as the Kukkiwon textbook also provide detailed photos, korean instruction and often brief descriptions of the attack move that the poomsae is defending against, which are great fun to reivew. That being said; it is without doubt training in the dojang as often as one can is where the learning and discipline takes place, and where the reward is felt first hand with your fellow students. Respectively Jake