Hae Sul in Sunny Fife, Scotland
Reports by Master John Kirkwood & Sabumnim David Graham
On October 19th 2014, GTF Scotland were delighted to host a duet of seminars with Mr Stuart Anslow 5th Degree. Mr Anslow is well known in Taekwon-Do circles and has produced several “essential reading material” books on the art. These seminars focussed on the excellent Hae Sul series of books. The seminar welcomed people of all grades (from yellow belt to Master ranks), demonstrating Mr Anslow's ability to pass his knowledge and experience to anyone. Though hosted by GTF Scotland, the spirit of 1 Taekwon-Do was very much the essence of the seminars, with students from ITF, AIMAA and ITS (Fife TKD Group) joining the GTF students and learning side by side with them.
Starting with Chon-Ji we worked through a series of applications based on individual and groups of techniques right throughout the patterns. Opening up new avenues, expressing new ideas and showing that the Chang Hong Patterns are not simply a dance display for competitions. It demonstrated the devastating and deadly ability locked within the techniques we practice every day, but more importantly made these relevant to the issues faced our streets.
“... Got so much from the seminar and looking at the patterns in a totally different way now...” - Samantha Stokes 1st Degree
There was no reliance on the encyclopedia and its version of the technical applications, nor were there any dogmatic views on why things were performed in certain ways. Far from being told “what to think”, we were simply being taught “to think”. An open minded approach to a never ending subject left everyone with a real sense that what they were doing could be an effective tool in defending themselves.
“I have been to hundreds of seminars, with some of the greatest exponents of Taekwon-Do (Gen Choi, GM Park Jung Tae, GM He Il Cho, GM Rhee Ki Ha etc) and can honestly say this was one of my favourite seminars to date. The brutal simplicity contained in the techniques was exposed as we went through them and you began to get a true sense of the power TKD contained. It really opened up a whole new understanding of what the patterns can be used for. So many people I have trained under (I have also been guilty of this myself) are so concerned with uniformity, distances and angles et al that the devastating beauty of the art has been somewhat forgotten. Well not anymore. This coupled with the Hae Sul series of books has shown me that there are no limits as to the destructive and defensive capabilities of the art. Would recommend anyone with any kind of inclination toward the self defence aspect of the art to get in touch with Mr Anslow, read the books and do the seminar” - Stephen Gell 6th Degree
Beyond the subject matter of the seminar however, the greatest legacy was the diversity of the ranks and federations present, showing all too clearly that we do not need 1 federation to have 1 Taekwon-Do. Everyone form all clubs, areas and federations were there for the soul purpose of bettering their understanding of their art. From the non sine wave to the ITF sine wave and all versions between, were able to put differences aside, apply their techniques and leave the politics to those that think they care.
“A great day had by all... Thanks to Mr Anslow for the very informative seminar and to GTF Scotland for hosting it” - Master Kirkwood (AIMAA)
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I had the privilege of attending a fantastic seminar organised by GTF Scotland, and conducted by Mr Stuart Anslow 5th Degree on Sunday 19th of October. The seminar was conducted over a full day and I was fortunate to attend the afternoon session with Mr Anslow along with my instructor Master John Kirkwood.
As a 3rd Degree black belt at AIMAA Scotland Tae Kwon Do I was very impressed with Mr Anslows in depth knowledge on how to utilise the traditional moves within our TKD patterns, and incorporate these into practical and effective self-defence combinations.
Mr Anslow explained each application of the techniques in detail, which encouraged everyone at the seminar to think about self-defence in a different way.
As the seminar progressed we moved on to further our knowledge in both knife and handgun self-defence. This was a great experience as it’s undervalued in most Dojangs and not regularly practiced, so it was great to get Mr Anslows experience and expertise on this subject.
The day was a fun experience between different associations all with a common goal of learning from each other, and the advancement of their knowledge in order to pass this onto others.
This was a fantastic day with great martial artists, and I would recommend anyone to attend one of Mr Anslows seminars.
- Mr David Graham