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April 11 – Wichita, KS – Supreme Master Kim Bok-Man of Roseland has been recognized as a Winner in the 4th Annual Beverly Hills International Book Awards

Taekwon-Do: Origins of the Art: Bok Man Kim’s Historic Photospective (1955-2015), Supreme Master Kim’s fourth book, reflects upon the history of Taekwon-Do through Grandmaster Kim’s personal photo collection spanning nearly 60 years, especially the art’s earliest and most pivotal events. Supreme Master Kim, one of the most influential and important pioneers of military Taekwon-Do, began his martial arts training in 1941 when he was 7 years old. By 1950, he had joined the Korean Army and in early 1955 was transferred to General Choi Hong Hi’s division before the new Korean art was named. He was a member of the first Taekwon-Do demonstration team to perform outside of Korea in Taiwan and Vietnam in 1959, and helped Gen. Choi develop 15 of the Ch’ang Hon tuls and provided input on as many as four more. Master Kim also helped Gen. Choi develop the techniques and write the first English textbook, Gen. Choi’sTaekwon-Do: The Art of Self-Defence, published in 1965. Master Kim was a founding member of the International Taekwon-Do Federation (ITF) in March 1966, and every country where he demonstrated and set up Taekwon-Do organizations became founding nations. Master Kim lead the historic first ITF International Demonstration Team in 1967. In 1978, he sponsored the 3rd Asian Taekwon-Do Championships in Hong Kong at the request of Un Yong Kim and the World Taekwondo Federation (WTF). Ten years later, Taekwondo would become a demonstration sport in the 1988 Olympics in Seoul, South Korea. For more than 60 years, Supreme Master Kim Bok-Man has been practicing, developing, teaching and promoting Taekwon-Do.

Master Kim teaches at Complete Martial Arts in Roseland, New Jersey.

“Winning a Beverly Hills International Book Award came as a big surprise,” said Supreme Master Kim Bok-Man. “Master Swope did a very good job editing my book. He had many good ideas to make the book better. My history has never been told so completely or in such a novel way before,” he added.

Taekwon-Do: Origins of the Art was edited by Master Mike Swope. Master Swope met Supreme Master Kim in 2013 when he hosted Supreme Master Kim’s seminar in Rose Hill, Kansas.

CCAPTION: Supreme Master Kim Bok-Man awards Master Mike Swope with a World Chun Kuhn Do Federation 7th Dan Black Belt in Derby, Kansas, U.S.A., November 9, 2013.

CCAPTION: Supreme Master Kim Bok-Man awards Master Mike Swope with a World Chun Kuhn Do Federation 7th Dan Black Belt in Derby, Kansas, U.S.A., November 9, 2013.

Supreme Master Kim is the author of three other books about the martial arts: Practical Taekwon-Do (1979), Chun Kuhn Do: The Complete Wellness Art (Vol 1), and Taekwondo: Defense Against Weapons (2012).

Master Swope began editing and designing the book in late 2014, and in 2015 formed Moosul Publishing, LLC to publish it. Master Swope recognized that creating his own company was the most efficient and timely way to publish Master Kim’s book, who turned 81 this past December. This also allowed Master Kim more control over all aspects of the book. Moosul means “martial art” in Korean, to honor the birthplace of both Taekwondo and Master Kim.

At Supreme Master Kim’s request, Master Swope also wrote the book’s introduction.

“Words cannot describe the experience of working with Supreme Master Kim. To have been trusted to help him with his latest book is the highest honor I could ever imagine,” said Master Mike Swope. “But to have our work selected as a Winner in the Beverly Hills International Book Awards, as Moosul Publishing’s first book, leaves me speechless and deeply humbled. The recognition is truly Master Kim’s, for without him there would be no book. Taekwondo likewise would not be what it is today without Supreme Master Kim’s contributions.”

“The Beverly Hills International Book Awards are structured so that only one book per category may be designated as a Winner,” said Ellen Reid, President & CEO. “As a Winner in the Sports category, Taekwon-Do: Origins of the Art: Bok Man Kim’s Historic Photospective (1955-2015) embodies the excellence that this award was created to celebrate.”

Taekwon-Do: Origins of the Art: Bok Man Kim’s Historic Photospective (1955-2015) was previously recognized as a Finalist in the 2015 USA Best Book Awards. Taekwondo: Defense Against Weapons was a Finalist in the 2012 USA Best Book Awards.

The Beverly Hills International Book Awards, open to all English language books in print, are judged by experts from all aspects of the book industry, including publishers, writers, editors, book cover designers and professional copywriters. Winning books demonstrate excellence in a wide scope of criteria which contribute to an outstanding overall presentation.

Taekwon-Do: Origins of the Art is available in trade paperback and hardback from most booksellers. A premium limited edition signed by Supreme Master Kim is available from the Moosul Publishing at, as well as the World Chun Kuhn Taekwondo Federation at Visitors to these sites receive 20% off the retail price through the end of 2015 to celebrate the book’s Finalist award.

If you’d like more information about this topic, or to schedule an interview with Master Mike Swope, please call 316-214-8695 or

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The True forms of Song Moo Kwan Taekwondo, volume 2

Volume Two of the Chung Bong hyungs is available now through CreateSpace (linked below) and will be available through Amazon and on Kindle by the end of the week. Thank you, Tanya Bartelt for the photography work and putting up with the project.

You can pick up your paperback copy here – – and your Kindle copy here –

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Research of Martial Arts: A Book Review

I’m a sucker for martial arts books. My shelves are full of guidelines for systems I will never have the chance to study, by masters past and present whom I will never have the chance, or sometimes the desire, to meet. There’s even a book about using taiji to run better.

Martial arts books fall into a few categories. The ones most people look for are the ones I think of as “How To Wave Your Hands Around” books. They describe the motions of forms and styles, often finishing up with short bios of famous teachers and cryptic translations of old sayings. The more interesting ones go into the mechanics: “How to Wave Your Hands Around With Intention.” It is endlessly fascinating to see how two movements can mean and do such different things with different intentions behind them. Is it a strike or a throw? However, lists of this kind of jing and that kind of jing are not always interesting reading since you really need an in-person teacher to show you how to unlock meaning and hidden moves within a form. The third category is philosophy, which is the difference between martial arts and fighting. You probably have these books on your shelves, too. Each of them has its place. I’ve quoted from one or another of them extensively in my writings, since each can be the source of great inspiration.

I’ve recently had the pleasure of reading a book that reaches multiple categories and beyond, Researches of Martial Arts by Jonathan Bluestein. Mr. Bluestein is an exponent of two traditional Chinese martial arts, Xing Yi (internal) and Piguachang (mostly external) and uses his understanding of them to launch into an expansive, thoughtful exploration of the “why” behind traditional East Asian martial arts. Waving hands? A little, although it is not the main focus. Intention? Yes. Internal and external power? Yes, although he thoughtfully disagrees with the traditional classifications. Open hand forms and weapons? Yes. History and philosophy and interviews with masters? Yes. More than that, he touches on what most martial artists are secretly looking for: the keys to unlock hidden aspects within our systems through deep and authentic practice. That kind of serious practice can be reflected in our lives off the mat, too. Mr. Bluestein understands that martial arts are not only about fighting.

For those who are looking for more than the “how to” of martial arts or negotiating strategy, Researches of Martial Arts is worth the read.

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Ronda Rousey My Fight Your Fight – Book Review

Whether you love her or hate her there is no denying that MMA fighter Ronda Rousey is one of if not the best fighter in not only woman’s MMA but in history. She has already taken the MMA world by storm and has begun taking Hollywood as well with her appearances in Expendables 3, Fast and Furious 7 and the Entourage movie. Now she has brought her incredible story together in book form with My Fight Your Fight.

The book follows not only Rousey’s rise through the ranks of JUDO and MMA to become the most dominate fighter in the world, but takes a peek inside her personal life as well. She has stripped away everything to allow the reader to take the journey with her to see the trials and tribulations she endured in both her personal life and her fight career. It’s one thing to be a fan of a fighter like Rousey, but when you get to see what she went through to get there it not only gives you a better understanding of her drive, but doubles as a motivational piece whether it was intended to be or not. As reading through this book you can see why and how she has become such a force to be reckoned with. Rousey has had so many personal struggles to deal with much like most people, but she chose to not sit down and give up like most and instead use it to drive her even further. Here story is classic Hollywood in design, but is all the real deal. She is not a factory produced average fighter, she is so much more. Her drive to be the best in and out of the ring with anything she does shows why she continues to dominate it all. She sees the weakness she has and feeds off of them to make herself better and instead of working around them eliminates them all together. This book is perfectly written and after the first few pages you will find yourself immersed in her life and will not be able to put it down. Her descriptions of training and fighting alone will make you feel like you are right there on the mat training with her. While most will be love hearing the more in depth story of her fight career, it is her personal life that is by far the most interesting. There are so many things that she goes through on a personal level that you would never expect from someone so dominate in the cage. It’s these parts of the book that humanize her, but not in a weak way but in a way that you can relate and are reminded that despite her being able and willing to destroy any person dumb enough to step into the octagon, she is still a person just like you and me.

One of the things people like to say about Rousey is that she is too cocky and there are aspects of this book that could easily make most still think that way. Those that have stepped in the ring, trained in martial arts or are just successful in general will understand her attitude and how that is a major reason for her success. Unlike most books like this that sugar coats the story or just tries to point out only the high points in their careers, Rousey has laid all the dirt on the line and once again shows why she is the champion both in and out of the ring.

Step into the ring with Rowdy Ronda Rousey and grab My Fight/Your Fight available now.

For more on Rousey head over to and

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New Taekwondo Book available – The True Form of Song Moo Kwan TaeKwonDo

I have been training within the Song Moo Kwan lineage of Taekwondo for the past 33 years. I’ve had the fortune of working with many quality teachers and part of the curriculum that was created by Grandmaster Hyon, Jun Sun. Part of this curriculum has been the Chung Bong hyungs.

Grandmaster Hyon retired from teaching before I got the chance to learn from him but I’ve hoped to make sure that a part of his legacy to the development of Song Moo Kwan and Taekwondo to be lost. Toward this end, I have spent several years trying to understand the hyungs that he created.

I have now published the first of a three-volume set that describes the Chung Bong hyungs as I’ve come to understand them. Volume one includes a basic introduction, information about the techniques and the first 3 hyungs in a step-by-step format. It has been published through CreateSpace and is available through this link. You can also get a Kindle version here.

The second volume will be published soon featuring the second 3 hyungs and the techniques that go with them. The third volume will include the last hyung and some of the bunhae from the hyungs. I hope that these will benefit others training in Taekwondo.

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Book Review: Asian Martial Arts

Review of Asian Martial Arts; Edited by Michael A. DeMarco

A Sad Farewell

It is with a sad and heavy heart that I review Asian Martial Arts: Constructive Thoughts & Practical Applications; Edited by Michael A. DeMarco.

I say sad, because this book marks the end of the Journal of Asian Martial Arts. A noble and herculean endeavor first started by Mr. DeMarco in 1991. His goal, and I believed he achieved it during the time the journal was being published, was to provide a congregated platform for serious, academic study of martial arts. It was a place for serious scholars, who didn’t get much attention in their own fields, for writing martial arts articles. There was also a place for in depth, reviews of martial arts themed books and movies. Instead of coming from a film or book critique point of view, these reviews came from a educated martial artist point of view. Unfortunately the Journal ceased physical publication in 2012. Though it is still available, and possibly ongoing, in electronic format (and you can buy individual articles). This book is a sort of farewell to the journal.

I say guilty, because I let me attention of the Journal lapse. I would get the journal from the giant bookstores, but more often then not I would flip through it in the store to determine if I should get it. As it turns out, in this book, Dave Lowry give the Japanese term for doing that (tachi-yomi). So at least, I know I’m not alone. I actually learned of this book through an interview with Mr. DeMarco from the Hiyaa Martial Arts Podcast.

Physical Appearance

The book itself is around 6.5×9 (inches for any international readers whose country is smart enough to use the metric system). I normally don’t really talk about the cover of the book, but this book is beautiful. The cover is gorgeous. When I opened the package from Amazon, I was taken with the cover of the book. It doesn’t show on the picture, but the red lettering of the title is a embossed red foil of some sort. The brush art of the warrior conveys the motion of the sword swing better than most art I’ve seen. It does a great job of showing the martial spirit of the man.


The content is broken into two parts. The first is different martial arts scholars and authors sort of giving their take on what the Journal was, and saying their goodbyes. The second is an interesting collection where Mr. DeMarco had asked martial artist from various schools, styles, and backgrounds, to demonstrate, and document one of their favorite techniques. As I love looking at different martial theories and tactics, I loved this section of the book. There was a great variety, and they all held value. It was a nice little glimpse into the minds of great martial artists.

This book is bittersweet in that I loved the book, but felt that it signified an end of an academic center of martial arts, for martial artists. The cover alone should grant it a couple of stars, but the book itself is great, even if it does signify an end. That’s why I give it a full 5 Ninja Stars out of 5.Overall

P.S. If you are interested in getting this book, please go through the Martial Thoughts Amazon Store. It gives us a small bit, for getting more books to review, and you doesn’t cost you anything extra.

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5 Books Every Martial Artist should have

5 Books every martial artist should have (own, not just read)

I love reading about martial arts. Martial arts, martial artist, martial philosophy; doesn’t matter. I I have a modest, but extensive library, and I’m expanding it as much as my shrinking budget allows. I have to admit, I have a bias towards Japanese martial arts, so that is going to be where my emphasis lies. In our dojo, I often have people asking about what books to read, or which ones are worth it, or cover a particular martial art and so on. I’ve given enough advice to enough people, so I decided to share some with you. What follows is a list, and explanation, of 5 book, which should be on the shelf of everyone who considers themselves a martial artist. It is by no means exclusive, nor is it intended to be. In fact, I had a hard time just picking 5. If you have others to fill in, please add them in the comments. And make sure you tell us why your book should be included on the list.
devour the subject.

5. Tao of Jeet Kun Do by Bruce Lee

Tao of Jeet Kun Do

Tao of Jeet Kun Do

The first MMA? This is the story of Bruce’s martial studies. He doesn’t claim them as his own, only his own collection. If you look closely you can see the genius of Bruce Lee. He took information from everywhere, and incorporated them into his martial arts. He watched boxing, fencing, and other martial arts. He blended throws with strikes into a comprehensive martial art. Besides that, there is a nice blend of technique and philosophy. My favorite part is from the forward. Bruce Lee says read this book, and then throw it away. Meaning, don’t dwell on this. It is my journey/journal. Take what you can from it, and be done with it.

4. Comprehensive Asian Fighting Arts by Donn F. Draeger & Robert W. Smith

Asian Fighting Arts

Asian Fighting Arts

This is the first book in English where someone took the study of the history martial arts seriously. If you have an interest in the history of any of the Asian martial arts, start here.

This book is also credited with bringing many of the more obscure Asian arts to the attention of the West.

3. Living the Martial Way by Forrest E. Morgan

Living the Martial Way

Living the Martial Way

This was actually one of the first martial arts books I’ve read. I did so because it came recommended by a friend and Sensei. Mr. Morgan breaks down the ideals of warriorship and how to apply it to today’s life.

If you want to make martial arts your life, and not just something you do on Tuesdays evenings, this book is for you. I still go back and read it when I want inspiration.

2. The Art of War – Sun Tzu

The Art of War-Sun Tzu

The Art of War-Sun Tzu

There are many, many translations of this one, and they are all slightly translated differently. Any way you read it, this is the classic that is still looked at today. It breaks down conflict to its most basic elements.

Everyone involved in warfare and combat has studied this, so should you. There are innumerable bits of wisdom and strategy to be gained from this one.

1. The Book of Five Rings by Miyamoto Musashi

The Book of Five Rings

The Book of Five Rings

Again, lots of translations, each one translates it a little different. The intent is always the same, but the nuances are what separate the translations. I’m personally fond of the William Scott Wilson’s translation.

The only reason Go Rin No Sho (Book of Five Rings) was raised above The Art of War was due to the fact that Musashi was more of what we envision a martial artist to be; a lone warrior. Sun Tzu was more of a military strategist.

This book is so influential, that business executives are now requiring their strategists to read it. They view the negotiation table as a battlefield. The strategy should be the same.

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Book Review: Stuart Anslow's From Creation to Unification

From Creation to Unification: The Complete Histories Behind Ch’ang Hon (ITF) Patterns

The Historical Depth of General Choi’s Korean Kata

Stuart Anslow, as many already know, is the editor and publisher of Totally Tae Kwon Do magazine, a high-quality monthly publication which is informative, easy to read, unpretentious, interesting… the way the Taekwondo press used to be decades ago. In the United States anyway. He is a well-respected instructor at Rayner’s Lane Taekwon-do Academy in Middlesex, London, and a well-respected author as well. Stuart’s earlier books are: 1) The Encyclopedia of Taekwon-do Patterns (three volumes), which discuss and illustrate the Ch’ang Hon patterns developed by General Choi and soldiers of the ROK Army; and 2) Ch’ang Hon Taekwon-do Hae Sul – Real Applications to the ITF Patterns (two volumes), which explore realistic applications embedded within the tuls. These five books have been well-received and remain in high demand; used copies are nearly as expensive as new.

 Stuart Anslow’s From Creation to Unification: The Complete Histories Behind the Ch’ang Hon (ITF) Patterns, published in August 2013, offers 28 chapters and two appendices, covering every Ch’ang Hon pattern, including Ko-Dang, which General Choi replaced with Juche in the late 1980s, and the six Global Taekwon-do Federation (GTF) patterns created by Grandmaster Jung Tae Park.

[Tweet “This book provides ITF and GTF instructors and students with extensive historical information about General Choi’s 25 patterns”]

Clearly, the Ch’ang Hon tuls are Stuart’s specialty. From Creation to Unification: The Complete Histories Behind the Ch’ang Hon (ITF) Patterns, like his previous books, enriches students’ and instructors’ understanding and knowledge of the Ch’ang Hon series. Understandably, this book does not discuss the actual patterns or their techniques (these discussions are published in Stuart’s three-volume Encyclopedia of Taekwon-do Patterns). This book, instead, provides ITF and GTF instructors and students with extensive historical information about General Choi’s 25 patterns, including Ko-Dang which was replaced by Juche in the late 1980s, and the six patterns taught by the GTF (Global Taekwon-do Federation). This is the first time such material has been researched and presented in a single all-inclusive volume. From Creation to Unification: The Complete Histories Behind the Ch’ang Hon (ITF) Patterns, however, is not written exclusively for the ITF or GTF. As we shall see, students and instructors from all Taekwondo styles benefit from reading the book as well.

From Creation to Unification

From Creation to Unification

CAPTION: Mr. Anslow has become well-respected for his teaching and writing by not only the International Taekwon-do Federation (ITF) but also the World Taekwondo Federation (WTF) in Seoul, South Korea, which presented him with a Citation of Recognition in 2010. The Citation was signed by Dr. Choue, President of the WTF. The Citation reads: “In recognition of your dedicated service and outstanding contribution to the development of Taekwondo.”

For non-Koreans, however, the description of Kwang-Gae doesn’t reveal much at all.

As Stuart notes, General Choi’s descriptions for these patterns are superficial. General Choi dryly states the name of the tul, who or what it was named for, and what it symbolizes. Perhaps General Choi’s descriptions are enough for Koreans, familiar with their country’s history, to comprehend the link(s) between the patterns and their historical namesakes. For non-Koreans, however, the description of Kwang-Gae doesn’t reveal much at all. It doesn’t explain the why: why General Choi developed a pattern to symbolize and reflect the life of Kwang-Gae-Toh-Wang, for example. Stuart’s exhaustive research expands on General Choi’s descriptions significantly. Although General Choi’s description of Kwang-Gae is three sentences, Stuart’s self-described complete history is 8 pages, a result of thorough research of Kwang-Gae-Toh-Wang. Now, possibly for the first time, non-Korean students and instructors alike may fully understand why General Choi forever immortalized historical figures of Korean history in the Ch’ang Hon patterns.

In addition to the historical biographies of the Korean namesakes, Stuart also provides information about the birth of each Ch’ang Hon pattern, such as who helped create each of the tuls, and when and where each pattern was created. Stuart also notes alternative symbolism for the number of movements in each pattern if any exist. Finally, Stuart describes how each namesake has been further honored, whether by historical monuments, currency, films, television series or other medium. Interested readers may further investigate the dramatizations in the films and television series Stuart has identified in his research.

Take, for example, Kwang-Gae. General Choi writes of Kwang-Gae:

“Kwang-Gae is named after the famous Kwang-Gae-Toh-Wang, the 19th king of the Koguryo Dynasty, who regained all the lost territories, including the greater part of Manchuria. The diagram represents the expansion and recovery of lost territory. The 39 movements refer to the first two digits of 391 A.D., the year he came to the throne.”

Stuart, on the other hand, reveals so much more. In his research, Stuart learned that Kwang-Gae was created by Master Bok Man Kim and Master Jae Lim Woo between 1962 and 1964 in Malaysia. The title Kwang-Gae-Toh-Wang, Stuart tells us, translates to “Very Greatest King, Broad Expander of Territory.”

Although General Choi states that Kwang-Gae’s 39 movements refer to the year Kwang-Gae-Toh-Wang ascended the throne (391 A.D.), Stuart notes that the number of movements may also refer to Kwang-Gae-Toh-Wang’s age when he died: 39. A monument, discovered in 1875, was erected in Manchuria in 414 AD by King Jangsu, Kwang-Gae-Toh-Wang’s son and successor to the throne. Stuart describes a monument whose information has been unfortunately altered, likely by the Japanese during the Japanese occupation from 1910-1945, a common practice when Japan invaded and occupied another country. Stuart also describes an historical drama based on Kwang-Gae’s life which aired in 2011 but was subsequently banned by China because the dramatization conflicts with China’s official history of the period.

From Creation to Unification

From Creation to Unification

CAPTION: Stuart begins each chapter about the patterns with General Choi’s description, then indicates where each pattern fits into the ITF belt system, and finally describes when, where and with whom each pattern as developed. For example, Kwang-Gae was developed by Master Bok Man Kim and Master Jae Lim Woo in Malaysia between 1962 and 1964. Stuart also notes that the patterns were not developed in order by gup or dan rank. Although Chon-Ji is the first pattern, taught at 10th gup, Hwa-Rang was the first pattern to be created for General Choi. In General Choi’s grand design for the Ch’ang Hon patterns, the first pattern in the series, Chon-Ji, represents the creation of the earth, and the last pattern, Tong Il, represents the unification of North and South Korea. The remaining 22 patterns are named after important figures in Korean history.

In some cases Stuart notes where General Choi, despite his Herculean efforts to develop and promote Taekwon-do, made errors. General Choi made one such error in Do-San’s birth date in the “standard” definition of the Do-San pattern. General Choi lists Do-San’s birth date as 1876, but Stuart’s research indicates that his birth date is actually 1878. The error still appears in the 2006 edition of General Choi’s Encyclopedia of Taekwon-Do! Since General Choi selected Do-San to be honored and remembered for his significant contributions to Korean history, Stuart believes that General Choi would have wanted the error to be corrected to authentically honor the achievements and memory of Do-San and accurately represent the history of Korea. Perhaps future editions of General Choi’s Encyclopedia will be corrected.

Although the historical perspectives and backgrounds are the heart of From Creation to Unification: The Complete Histories Behind the Ch’ang Hon (ITF) Patterns, Stuart opens the book by describing and defining Korean history so that readers need not be Korean scholars. Stuart first defines kings, kingdoms, emperors and dynasties, terms which may confuse unfamiliar readers. Next, Stuart paints a general overview of Korean history which specifically includes the namesakes of the patterns, firmly placing them in historical context in a manner that, when re-read, contributes to the reader’s understanding and enrichment. Stuart has also sprinkled callouts among the pages of the brief history of Korea which associate the history of Korea with historical events more familiar to Westerners, such as the First Crusade, the birth of Genghis Kahn, Marco Polo’s first visit to China, Christopher Columbus’ discovery of America, the Industrial Revolution, the sinking of the Titanic, World War I and World War II.

From Creation to Unification

From Creation to Unification

CAPTION: Each chapter about the Ch’ang Hon patterns, in addition to a through biography about each pattern’s namesake, describes how each influential figure of Korean history has been further immortalized in other mediums such as monuments, film, television series and Korean currency. This additional information makes it possible for readers to search out the movies and television series, for example, which dramatize the relevant periods and characters of Korean history.

Throughout the book, Stuart also places footnotes which provide further related material and information that are likely to be of interest to readers, providing a fuller experience for them. For example, Stuart tells readers about a Scotsman, without whom Japan may never have invaded and occupied Korea. Who was this man? A man whose country was thousands of miles from Korea? And how did he influence the invasion of Korea – you will find out in this book. Hundreds of such footnotes appear in the pages of From Creation to Unification: The Complete Histories Behind the Ch’ang Hon (ITF) Patterns.

naturally benefits ITF and GTF students and instructors, the book likewise benefits all Taekwondo students and instructors, regardless of affiliation.

Although Stuart’s From Creation to Unification: The Complete Histories Behind the Ch’ang Hon (ITF) Patterns naturally benefits ITF and GTF students and instructors, the book likewise benefits all Taekwondo students and instructors, regardless of affiliation. I am a student and instructor of Kukki Taekwondo, which practices the Taegeuk and Yudanja patterns, and interested in the history of the art in general. Stuart’s latest book helps me better appreciate General Choi’s patriotism, vision, foresight and contributions to Taekwon-do. Stuart notes in the introduction that a primary driving force behind the Ch’ang Hon patterns was General Choi’s desire to embed Korean history within them and spread them around the world. Stuart quotes General Choi from an interview in 1999: “A part of Korea, therefore, now exists across the whole world and Korea’s nationality and history can never be removed by oppressors again.”

Although the study of any history seems to bore most people, me included, Stuart’s book is anything but boring. I have read this book late into the night, telling myself, “Just one more chapter…Just one more chapter…Just one more chapter….” Stuart’s writing is clean, clear, well-paced, and organized. I believe most readers will read and re-read the book, especially if they teach and practice the Ch’ang Hon patterns. Instructors may also find it useful to recommend the book to their students as they start their journey.

I believe General Choi would be pleased with Stuart Anslow’s efforts with From Creation to Unification: The Complete Histories Behind the Ch’ang Hon (ITF) Patterns to help students of ITF and GTF Taekwon-do, indeed all students of Taekwondo, better understand and more fully appreciate the Ch’ang Hon patterns, as well as Korean history.

You can purchase this via this website today:

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Book Review: Ch'ang Hon Taekwon-do Hae Sul

Real Applications To the ITF Patterns – Vol. 1

As a serious collector of TKD books, training manuals etc I rate this book as the most important book on the Chang Hon style of Taekwon-Do released since the 15 volume encyclopaedia was published. I have a large collection of TKD books but they are all pretty much the same, clones of Gen Chois books. They all follow the same format that the original book on Taekwon-Do (published 1965) started, in that the applications listed are all the same. The format being a block is a block and a strike is a strike. Have you ever wondered why the application shown for 9th kup technique such as low section outer forearm block is the same application shown for a first degree technique such as 9 shape block? Why are there so many tools that all perform the same function according to the existing manuals? If you have a spanner that fits a nut perfectly and it works well why would you want another hundred spanners that do the same job?

See Also: The Encyclopedia of Taekwon-Do Patterns
Stuart Anslow

Stuart Anslow

Stuart’s book is completely different and packed with interesting, informative, useful, inspirational and perhaps controversial information. The first few chapters provide the background to the approach taken in the book, the Korean roots of Taekwon-Do and the link from Shotokan Karate, and from then on it’s down to the pattern applications themselves. Each fundamental exercise and pattern from Sajo Makgi to Toi Gye is treated to a comprehensive chapter which provides detailed explanations of possible alternative self defence applications for each individual move and step. There is a wealth of photographs to accompany each technique which make the applications very easy to follow.

The great thing is the applications suggested actually fit the patterns as they are normally performed, as Stuart says the piece must fit the jigsaw as intended you should not have to alter the jigsaw so the piece fits (a rough paraphrase!).

At the start of each chapter there is also a wealth of information on the Korean Characters and mythology that relate to the pattern meanings. Three pages on the meaning of Dan Gun alone!

Stuart’s book is completely different and packed with interesting, informative, useful, inspirational and perhaps controversial information.

If you have ever been dissatisfied with the stock answers to why we perform various pattern movements, or if you want to find out how to get the best from your reaction hand (have you ever even thought about it before?) then you need this book. This book is the missing link between pattern practise and workable self defence. You may not agree with everything in the book but it will certainly make you think and question which can only be a good thing.

If I was forced to get rid of my collection and allowed to keep two reference manuals, I would keep the 15 volumes and Stuarts.

If you are serious about ITF Chang Hon TKD then this will be money well spent.

Book Blurb

This groundbreaking first book studies the history and development of the Ch’ang Hon (ITF) Taekwon-do patterns as devised, taught and developed by the founder of Taekwon-do; General Choi, Hong Hi. Ch’ang Hon Taekwon-do Hae Sul is an in-depth study of the Ch’ang Hon Taekwon-do patterns; their history and their roots; Taekwon-do’s evolution; its genetic make-up; its differences with other martial arts; and the techniques and movements that define the system. For the first time since its inception, this book details realistic interpretations for the ITF patterns including Chon-Ji, Dan-Gun, Do-San, Won-Hyo, Yul-Gok, Joong-Gun, Toi-Gye, as well as Saju Jirugi and Sagu Makgi. Over 17 chapters covering 360+ pages, with over 1,600 detailed photographs, the patterns are examined, dissected and rebuilt to help both students and instructors understand the applications that are really contained within the Ch’ang Hon patterns – many of which were previously unknown and undocumented. In step-by-step photographic detail, learn what the techniques and combinations of the Ch’ang Hon patterns actually represent and how to turn your patterns into a realistic way of training actual self defence techniques that work, and turn them into something much more than they are practiced today. Along the way, the reader is treated to a fascinating insight into the history of the Ch’ang Hon patterns as well as Taekwon-do itself, with many of its previously unknown, undocumented or understudied principles revealed. Read what helped to shape the art which became so feared on the battlefield of Vietnam that enemy soldiers were told not to engage the Korean soldiers, whether armed or not, due to their knowledge of Taekwon-do. A historical study of Taekwon-do and its patterns – as well as a training manual and an encyclopaedia of realistic applications – make this book a must-read for all those that study and practice Taekwon-do. A milestone for the development of Taekwon-do.

What other readers think about this book

“I received the book and I have read most of it…I’m impressed!!!!! the book is just amazing. Excellent book!!!!! it is difficult to describe how good this book is… it is just great!!!!!!” – Francisco S González, Mexico

“Loved it! Nice to read something ‘new’ on Taekwon-do. Well done. Now pick up the pen/ keyboard and get writing the next edition. Please!” – David Farrell-Shaw, V, ITF

“Content looks very good, so much more than just a book on pattern applications. The photography is detailed and very clear, I’m impressed with how easy to follow much of it is and that you’ve illustrated virtually everything. The layout also flows well, aiding clarity (I’ve done some layout work for printed publications myself and know how hard that can be).” – Paul Mitchell, II – Taekwon-do Instructor, (TAGB)

“I have recieved the book safe and sound. It is really great I have only got about 1/4 the way through but already has brilliant references, explainations and very interesting applications.” – Dave Horton, I – GTUK Assistant Instructor (ITF)

“I give the book a A! Layout is top notch. The content and areas covered is very through, I like that is covers traditional side from all angles and you cover some other non-traditional angles as well. You really took our style to the next level.” – Rob Benedetto, Dragon Star Martial Arts, USA

“I got the book yesterday and it is a VERY good book. I was amazed at how much I didn’t know about Taekwondo forms. I’m very glad and thankful you wrote this book.”
– Thomas Joo, USA

You can purchase this via this website today:

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Book Review: The Encyclopedia of Taekwon-Do Patterns

Not to be confused with the 15 volume Encycopedia Of Taekwon-Do by General Choi. This is the latest work from respected Taekwon-Do stylist Stuart Anslow.

Stuart’s previous work Chang Hon Hae Sul explored the hidden applications in the Chang Hon pattern set. With this latest publication spanning three volumes, Stuart has tackled the more conventional area of pattern movements and performance.

This set of books is not about application, its simply a step by step guide to learning and performing the relevant pattern applicable to all grades from 9th kup to 9th Degree. Every Chang Hon pattern is explored in some depth from Chon Ji to the final pattern required for Seventh Degree and above Tong IL. What is also unique from a Chang Hon stylists perspective is that Stuart has included both Ko Dang and Juche and is the only work that documents all 25 patterns created by General Choi and the pioneers of the ITF.


Stuart Anslow

Stuart Anslow

Stuarts work is unique in that not only does it include the 25 Chang Hon patterns but also provides step by step instruction in the six Jee-Goo Hyungs created exclusively for the GTF by Grandmaster Park Jung Tae and the Silla Knife pattern created by Grandmaster Kim Bok Man. These GTF hyungs have never been published in this format before and the Silla knife pattern was only available in Grandmaster Kim Bok Man’s book Practical Taekwon-Do. Whilst not directly relevant to Chang Hon stylists, these make a fascinating reference work for all serious students of Taekwon – Do, and I personally have enjoyed studying the hyungs created by GM Park which not surprisingly for anyone with any knowledge of GM Park contain some interesting kicking combinations which are not for the faint hearted or stiff legged!

Now some may say “but this has been done before! Why do we need another patterns book?” Yes its been done before but the only other reference book I own that gives this much material is the full 15 volumes written by General Choi himself, and unfortunately the 15 volumes are no longer widely available. The condensed version which is widely available does contain all patterns but only in text form which is much harder to follow or check if unsure of a move. The only other picture reference for the higher grade patterns that I am aware of is by the TAGB and doesn’t do a great job, merely showing the previous posture and the finished next move with very little detail or explanation. Stuart’s book is clearly illustrated with the starting posture and the finished next position but where it scores highly is that it also shows the intermediate position that the student travels through to arrive at the end position, this is invaluable to anyone who is serious about learning the forms properly and follows General Chois 15 volume format. Obviously the books cant replace a good instructor but can provide that link between dojang and home practise that other books of this kind fail to to do.

[pullquote]Ultimately this has obviously been a labour of love and that shines from the pages to the reader. Essential reference work for all serious students of Taekwon-Do regardless of rank or association.[/pullquote]

Interestingly Stuart has taken a very broad approach and these books are directed at all students irrespective of association or style. There are a number of fascinating articles on the small but subtle differences that have been created as TKD has evolved and taken different routes over the years, rather than dismissing them Stuart embraces them without prejudice and presents them for the reader in an interesting and insightful manner. There are other articles on the history of Chang Hon patterns development, Sinewave , Speeds in patterns for various movements and so much more including a very complete Full History of Taekwon Do that appears in Volume 1 of the 3! Essential reading for the Taekwon-Do historian.

Ultimately this has obviously been a labour of love and that shines from the pages to the reader. Essential reference work for all serious students of Taekwon-Do regardless of rank or association.

60 years in the making…

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.

The Encyclopedia of Taekwon-do Patterns, Vol. 3

Volume 3

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.

Utilizing over 5,800 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 organisations (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 organisation 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, Kwang-Gae.
  • 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

No matter which Taekwon-Do organisation 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.

The Only Pattern Books You’ll Ever Need!

If you are interested in this collection, it is available on Amazon
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