Thread: Korean Punching Technique
11-28-2008, 14:17 #1
Korean Punching Technique
Does anyone else notice a marked difference between the Korean punching technique and the Japanese/ Okinawan punching technique?
Korean martial arts are well known for their awesome kicking techniques, but after hearing so many Japanese/Okinawan practitioners comment about the weak Korean punching method, I decided to investigate for myself.
I visited an Okinawan MA school and a Shotokan school and I have been online and on youtube, and in the bookstores for the past 3 weeks doing nothing but researching the Jap/Okinawan methods of lunge and reverse punching.......
I have found that ( in general) they are correct!
I have seen KMA stylist ( of which I am as well) punch with little hip motion, just arm punch, not use the driving back leg to get the ground reaction force, not contract the ( gastrocnemius, soleus, gracilis, glute max, lat dorsi, serratus anterior, anterior deltoid, triceps, pronator teres, etc) when punching. I have seen KMA stylist "wing" ( not keep elbow at the side during the delivery) their punches, lead their punch with the elbow, and several other small but important things to make their punching weaker.
When visually inspecting the punching techniques of say...a Shotokan stylist you can see and hear the difference in the power level and snap and precision of the technique.
I wanted to get some feedback from my fellow KMA stylists on their observations and opinions of the Korean punching method.
Thanks for all input and comments!Michael Teachey
11-28-2008, 15:07 #2
I find this unusual for you as your a tang soo do practitioner. Your roots are in Chinese, Okinawan, and Shotokan Karate. It seems something went awry by the time it got to you. Your forms are also Japanese/Okinawan. Perhaps you should talk to your instructor about this.Robby Hedrick
11-28-2008, 15:36 #3
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11-28-2008, 16:43 #4
Not sure why you think this is unusual? Sure TSD roots are in the Arts mentioned but TKD roots are also in Japanese MA and they certainly don't look like Japanese/Okinawan practitioners.
I noticed (in my observations) across MANY videos of KMA practitioners on youtube + 15 years of 1st hand experience ( I have also studied Kuk Sool Won and trained with TKD and Hapkido people as well) that KMA 'ist have different mechanical techniques in their punching form.
Is that NOT your experience as well? What style do you practice? If it is a Korean style, do you punch as a Shotokan or Goju-Ryu stylist does?
Your point IS my point.
Since TSD has roots in Japanese and Okinawan systems, why then is the punching mechanics NOT the same? The problem isn't with me or the way that I was trained. It has been the case with all KMA'ist that I have met.
I'm not saying that their punches won't work, I've seen TONS of breaks with punches, just that the the mechanics are less than optimal.
Perhaps I should post video examples for reference?
Thnks and keep the comments coming. I hope to get to the bottom of this sooner or later!Michael Teachey
11-28-2008, 17:47 #5
This should help since your in America. Read this page and I think you will be able to infer why you punch in a more "korean" style as opposed to Japanes.
11-28-2008, 19:39 #6
Yes, I know all about WTSDA. Joined in '90.
Please help me out and tell why YOU think the Korean method is different?
Indulge me sir as I am a bit slow.
11-28-2008, 20:26 #7
I also want to add.
I would also like to say that I IN NO WAY mean to disrespect or discredit Korean MAs in any way. I am just doing an HONEST comparison of mechanical differences between punching techniques found in various styles from other cultures.
If Korean punching techniques are considered by many to be "weaker" than Japanese/Okinawan Arts, then I want to know why and how to change some things that I do, just to give myself more options.
I hope that my words are not taken offensively or out of context. I just want an intelligent discussion on the matter for those interested!
11-29-2008, 07:18 #8
I really don't think that minute details in individual techniques are easily classified based on country, as it's more related to the nature of the martial art. Such as hard-vs-soft, long/mid range-vs-CQC, weapon-vs-empty hand. Just my opinion. I really don't think cultural connotations have a huge impact of things such as hip rotation, fist being lateral/vertical or weight dropping when throwing a cross.
Saying that a student of Korean martial arts doesn't rotate his hips as much is something I'd like to contend, by the fact I'm in Korea and my hips seem to never be rotated far enough in punching OR kicking and my instructors remind me, quite often
Last edited by AllanJGAnderson; 11-29-2008 at 07:22.Respectfully,
Allan J.G. Anderson
"War is hell"
-William T. Sherman
11-29-2008, 12:00 #9
I also don't share your opinion.
But I can see that in some Korean schools the would emphasize kicking so much (WTF taekwondo??) that there is little time left to teach a decent punch. Just as maybe in certain Japanese arts they don't kick that much and thus have less stronger kicks than certain Korean styles.
I think that in the end all arts teach you to hit/kick/move/etc. etc from your danjeon.
I always tell my students 'you hit/kick with your body, not with your arm/leg'
11-29-2008, 18:31 #10
I think Klaas and Allan nailed it. It's a matter of priorities within the art. I wouldn't recommend a judo or BJJ class to anyone who wants to perfect their punching. I wouldn't recommend a TKD class for that either. In fact, in many cases I would not recommend a karate class - I would recommend western boxing and/or wing chun. For kicking, TSD, TKD, muay thai, savate would be on my list of recommendations.
Jeff Cook"Beware of entrance to a quarrel but being in, bear't that the opposed may beware of thee." - Polonius
De inimico non loquaris sed cogites.
Do not wish ill for your enemy....plan it.
11-30-2008, 05:25 #11
Here's a Korean Stylist (Tang Soo Do), whose punching techniques are, IMO, as good as they get - anywhere (and I have seen hundreds over the years).
Jeff Cook does have a good point, though. Want to learn good punching techniques quickly? Take a Western Boxing course at a good gym.
11-30-2008, 14:45 #12
I hope this thread continues to grow, as this is fascinating!
You guys are making some EXCELLENT points!
Does that mean however that whatever Art you study, you will always have weakness in your form that are inherent from the Art in which you study?
So really the only way to become "well rounded" is to study multiple styles?
Does that mean that someone who has studied ONE ART their whole life is really just a specialist in whatever aspect ( punching, kicking, throwing) their Art emphasises?
And if that is true then how does one choose an Art? Just on what aspect one likes?
11-30-2008, 21:06 #13
Allan J.G. Anderson
"War is hell"
-William T. Sherman
12-17-2008, 09:36 #14
I can see everyone's point, but I think it is pretty generalized to say Korean Arts. I think each art has it's good and bad points. I have to look back in history and watch the old masters to evaluate the stlye. Instructors have a major influence on what the perception of a proper technique should be. I see differences within the same styles in the same organization, based on the instructor. So minor modifications or misunderstandings by instructors through the years have changed many things. The student should be taught visualization of the execution and carrying it through to the physical execution.
I have been taught in TSD a lot of hip action to create power in all my techniques. But I had an old Korean Master who started his training in TSD in 1945. He did it the old way.
My studies with TSD required a real effort to realize it is a decision. You need to decide at the time of use what is the best execution. Not to just throw it out there, but think, adjust and execute. I have been taught for years to practice many ways (and not only the punches): I was taught to slow, fast, keep shoulder square for control, or driving with the leg to force the hips forward to push the power through the body body while rotating the shoulders forward to drive through the target with exaggerated extension, or maybe we would punch in a static position or moving or leaning forward with the punch...etc. It came down to a decision, but if one is not trained to decide, but to copy and not understand ...then you only know one way. The way you practiced it, with those limitations.
But the way I see it..it's the way an instructor was taught, understand the style and the way they currently teach, not necessarily the style or origin of the style. "just saying"
12-17-2008, 15:58 #15
Allan J.G. Anderson
"War is hell"
-William T. Sherman
12-26-2008, 15:40 #16
This is an excellent question and many outstanding responses.
As an Old American TKD MDK – KMA – I would have to state that the hips of KMA vs. J/OKMA should be no different. To execute an effective punch, knowing the dynamic of the human body, full hip utilization is required. This is regardless of style.
We also need to note that there is a style/expression difference in KMA.
The Olympic TKD movement has produced a sport expression of our art.
In this sport tkd, punching effectiveness is downplayed for kicking superior kicking ability. This is Olympic/sport TKD. It is how the game is played.
This is no different than when you look at the striking targets for our Jap/OKMA who focus on sport karate. It does not matter if you practice NASKA or traditional AAU sport karate. The argument can be made that the karate punch motion is excellent –but- not as effective because of inferior target selection.
I remember one of my instructors who stated; “Styles do not dictate the effectiveness of the student– it is the will and ability of the student that will always dictated the outcome of any event.”
Thank you for your question – it is good to be back to this forum.
An Old American TKD MDK
08-01-2009, 12:41 #17
I do love my Tang Soo Do, but I Have to say that I like the boxing punches much batter than any other punching techniques out there. I believe there much more effective and work well in combination with elbow strikes.
08-01-2009, 12:48 #18
I do love my Tang Soo Do, but I have to say that I like the boxing punches much batter than any other punching techniques out there. I believe there much more effective and work well in combination with elbow strikes. The boxing punches are what I teach my students along with other Tang Soo Do requirements.
08-13-2009, 09:44 #19
Jason C. Diederich
09-27-2009, 10:20 #20
This thread reminds me of two quotes:
Jack of all trades, Master of none.