Encyclopedia of Taekwon-Do patterns By Stuart Anslow ~ A Book Review

Here is the introduction as inserted by amazon.com ( letters in bold are highlighted specifically for this blog )

The Encyclopedia Of Taekwon-Do Patterns is a unique series of books that feature the complete works of General Choi, Hong Hi; Creator of the Ch’ang Hon system of Taekwon-Do and founder of the International Taekwon-Do Federation; as well as the patterns further devised by some of his most talented and legendary pioneers; Grandmaster Park, Jung Tae and Grandmaster Kim, Bok Man.

This 3-volume set is the only series of books in the world to feature all of the 25 patterns created by General Choi and his Taekwon-Do pioneers (including both Juche and Ko-Dang), as well as all 3 Saju exercises, the 6 Global Taekwon-Do Federation patterns developed by Grandmaster Park, Jung Tae and the Silla Knife Pattern instituted by Grandmaster Kim, Bok Man.

Utilizing over 1,600 photographs the student is shown in precise detail, each and every pattern from beginning to end, including useful tips on their performance and things unique to particular organizations (such as Kihap points etc.).

Displayed in full step-by-step photographic detail, which displays not just the final move but the ‘in-between’ motions as well making each book ideal to learn or revise your patterns, no matter which organization you belong to.

Volume 1 takes the student of Taekwon-Do on his or her journey from 10th Kup White Belt through to 1st Degree Black Belt and also includes the first of the Black Belt patterns. No matter which Taekwon-Do organization you belong to, the Encyclopedia Of Taekwon-Do Patterns covers all you need to know to take you from White Belt to Taekwon-Do Master.

Volume 2 takes the student of Taekwon-Do from Po-Eun (1st Dan) to Yoo-Sin (3rd Dan) and includes both Ko-Dang and Juche as well as the Dan grade patterns required by the Global Taekwon-Do Federation (GTF).

Volume 3 takes the senior student of Taekwon-Do from Choi-Yong (3rd Dan) to Tong-Il (6th Dan) and includes both Pyong-Hwa and Sun-Duk (required by the GTF), as well as featuring the first weapon form of Taekwon-Do: The Silla Knife Pattern.  ~  amazon.com

Biography

Stuart Anslow received his black belt in the art of Taekwon-Do in 1994 and is a 4th degree, due to take his 5th degree this year (2010). He is Chief Instructor of the renowned Rayners Lane Taekwon-do Academy, which was established in 1999 and is based in Middlesex, UK.

During his martial arts career, Stuart has won many accolades in the sporting arena, including national and world titles. His Academy is one of the most successful in the country winning numerous gold medals at every martial arts championship his students enter, a testament to his abilities as an instructor.

In 2000, Stuart won a gold and silver medal at Grandmaster Hee Il Cho’s 1st AIMAA Open World Championships in Dublin, Ireland and in 2004 he returned with 14 of his students to the 2nd AIMAA Open World Championships where they brought home 26 medals between them, 7 of them becoming World Champions in their own right. ~ Amazon.com

Summary & Critique:

The author, Mr. Stuart Anslow has recognized the differences in approach by the respective TKD Federations on the execution of  techniques, such as aligning the forefist with the shoulder rather than with the centre of the body, the movements and the chambering position when executing blocking techniques, different explanation of sine wave, pattern speed etc. All this different approaches are illustrated in the book.

For the more technically focused and competent TKD exponents who have an eagle eye on the finer details of execution of the various techniques, the illustrations and the photos shown do indicate some flaws and inaccuracies need to be further explained.

On the whole, this 3 volumes are informative and serve as good reference materials for the TKD enthusiasts, though the philosophical and  spiritual aspects could be further emphasized.

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