Hyungs

INTERPRETATION OF PATTERNS (HYUNGS)

The name of the pattern, the number of movements, and the diagrammatic symbol of each pattern symbolizes either heroic figures in Korean history or instances relating to historical events.

CHON-JI: means literally “The Heaven the Earth”. It is, in the Orient, interpreted as the creation of the world or the beginning of human history, therefore, it is the initial pattern played by the beginner. This pattern consists of two similar parts; one to represent the Heaven and the other the Earth.

DAN-GUN: is named after the holy Dan-Gun, the legendary founder of Korea in the year of 2333 B.C.

DO-SAN: is the pseudonym of the patriot Ahn Chang-Ho (1876-1938). The 24 movements represent his entire life which hedevoted to furthering the education of Korea and its independence movement.

WON- HYO: was the noted monk who introduced Buddhism to the Silla Dynasty in the year of 686 A.D.

YUL-GOK: is the pseudonym of a great philosopher and scholar Yi I (1536-1584) nicknamed the “Confucius of Korea”. The 38 movements of this pattern refer to his birthplace on 38¹ latitude and the diagram (~) represents “scholar”.

JOONG-GUN: is named after the patriot Ahn Joong-Gun who assassinated Hiro- Bumi Ito, the first Japanese governor-general of Korea, known as the man who played the leading part in the Korea- Japan merger. There are 32 movements in this pattern to represent Mr. Ahn’s age when he was executed at Lui-Shung prison (1910).

TOI -GYE: is the pen name of the noted scholar Yi Hwang (16th century), an authority on neo- Confucianism. The 37 movements of the pattern refer to his birthplace on 37 latitude, the diagram (~) represents “scholar”.

HWA-RANG: is named after the Hwang youth group which originated in the Silla Dynasty in the early 7th century. The 29 movements refer to the 29th Infantry Division, where Taekwon-Do developed into maturity.

CHOONG-MOO: was the name given to the great Admiral Yi Soon-Sin of theLee Dynasty.He was reputed to have invented the first armoured battleship (Kobukson) in 1592, which is said to be the precursor of the present day submarine. The reason why this pattern ends with a left hand attack is to symbolize his regrettable death, having no chance to show his unrestrained potentiality checked by the forced reservation of his loyalty to the king.


THE SIGNIFICANCE OF PATTERNS (HYUNGS)

The ancient law in the Orient was similar to the law of Hamurabi, “an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth,” and was rigorously enforced. That is, if a person hurt another-even accidentally-there was equal punishment for the act.

Due to these ancient laws, and since the present system of free sparring had not yet been developed, it was impossible for a student of the martial arts to practice or test his individual skill of attack and defense against actual moving opponents.

Individual advancement was certainly hindered until an imaginative practitioner created the first patterns. Patterns, or hyung, are various fundamental movements, most of which represent either attack or defense techniques, set to a fixed or logical sequence. The student systematically deals with several imaginary opponents under various assumptions, using every available attacking and blocking tool from different directions. Thus pattern practice enables the student to go through many fundamental movements in series, to develop sparring techniques, improve flexibility of movements, master body shifting, build muscles and breath control, develop fluid and smooth motions, and gain rhythmical movements. It also enables a student to acquire certain special techniques which cannot be obtained from either fundamental exercises or sparring. In short, a pattern can be compared with a sentence or paragraph, if fundamental movement is an individual student’s training or alphabet. Accordingly, pattern, the ledger of every movement, is a series of sparring, power, feats and characteristic beauty. Though sparring may merely indicate that an opponent is more or less advanced, patterns are a more critical barometer in evaluating an individual’s technique.

The following points should be considered while performing patterns:

1. Pattern should begin and end at exactly the same spot. This will indicate the performer’s accuracy.

2. Correct posture and facing must be maintained at all times.

3. Muscles of the body should be either tensed or relaxed at the proper critical moments in the exercise.

4. The exercise should be performed in a rhythmic movement with an absence of stiffness.

5. Each pattern should be perfected before moving to the next.

6. Students should know the purpose of each movement. If not, they should seek out the answer.

7. Students should perform each movement with realism.

8. Attack and defense techniques should be equally distributed among right and left hands and feet.

Practice patterns with the utmost seriousness. While some of the classical moves may seem impractical for self defense purposes, there is an underlying benefit of performing patterns. You learn to execute combinations with accuracy, speed, and power, as well as balance essential to defending yourself. Proper training of patterns will condition your body, and physical fitness is an essential element of Taekwon-Do. Execute each technique as if your life depends on it. Walking thru your pattern without applying power, focus and the necessary attention to detail will not enhance your ability to effectively defend yourself should the need ever arise.