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The Secret of Korean Poomsae

To be honest it gets hard to keep my weeklies interesting if nothing shocking happens within the week. I mean, who’s waiting for just another story about how I cannot walk the stairs because my muscles don’t want to anymore? I’ve written enough superficial stuff to demonstrate how hard training is at Namchang Dojang, time to give you a more in depth piece of news.

What is, in fact, the secret of my Korean heroes? Apart from their indispensable flexibility, there must be something that makes their Poomsae so much better than many European practitioners’. Most of the times my seniors say the biggest difference between Western Poomsae athletes and them is the way we build up power. I use my shoulders, which makes my techniques look messy, they use their core, which makes it look balanced and solid. I tighten my muscles all the way through, like an immobile stone, they fixate at the very end of their techniques and relax in between, like a flowing river. Call it the ‘power distribution problem’. Very hard (for my body) to understand. Until one of my seniors succeeded to express it in a very visual way, this morning.

Do you know those arcade dance machines, called Dance Dance Revolution? Well, the senior told me that, at the moment, I barely hit half of de arrows if you compare this machine to a Poomsae. I have to fixate my power at exactly the right time, in the rythm of the Poomsae. Too early, red cross. Too late, red cross. I’m not trying to compare Poomsae to a dance routine, there’s way more to it, but when it comes to the ‘power distribution problem’, this image was a major eye-opener. Thank you master Kang Hyung Jun.

Stretching pays off...

Stretching pays off…

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