The Amelia Earhart of Taekwon-Do

Coming soon an interview and history of the ITFs first female senior black belt (4th Degree) and a trailblazer for all ITF women to follow!  A female pioneer in the martial arts and Taekwon-Do since 1963 over 54 years and still teaching and learning!

Doug Nowling, Director General
Nowling sahyun has been a long time student of the martial arts and a history major and has been published and continues to promote all martial arts via the Kido Kwan blogs.
Posted in General Martial Arts, Kido Kwan, Taekwon-Do (ChangHon) aka ITF | Leave a comment

Kukkiwon Dan Tests & Certification Courses in USA JUNE 8 – 11, 2017

Kukkiwon logo



March 15, 2017 
Dear Kukkiwon Taekwondo Family,
The next Kukkiwon certification courses in the U.S. is on
JUNE 8 – 11, 2017
University of Berkeley, CA
Poom/Dan Test ExaminerCertification Courses
(Regular Dan testing from 1st to 7th Dan)
Sunday, June 11, 2017  (2pm – 5pm)
Questions & to Register for Dan Test:
Information and 

Online Registration Link: 
Mail-in Registration: 
Registration Deadline: 
May 8, 2017
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Kukkiwon Masters Instructors & Test Examiner


Masters Instructors & Hanmadang Referee 

* * * * * * * * * * * *
Masters & Students Kukkiwon Dan Applications —
please contact Kukkiwon America:
Office: (847) 480-9224
Direct: (630) 390-9975
* * * * * * * * * * * *
Taekwondo Cultural Journey to Korea
World Hanmadang Tournament Trip to Korea

Doug Nowling, Director General
Nowling sahyun has been a long time student of the martial arts and a history major and has been published and continues to promote all martial arts via the Kido Kwan blogs.
Posted in Taekwon-Do (ChangHon) aka ITF | Leave a comment

Integrity: A Shield for Good Character

Tenets of Taekwon-Do in Hanja (Chinese) by Choi, Hong-hi

When Gen. Choi, Hong-hi listed the tenets of the ITF®, he put Courtesy as number one and placed Integrity next to it. Perseverance, Self Control and Indomitable Spirit follow, in that order. Courtesy is first because it, by it’s innate meaning, tempers the other tenets.

Author with Gen. Choi circa 1982

​Integrity follows Courtesy because living by the code of Integrity shields or protects character and uplifts Courtesy. Honesty in purpose, conduct, speaking, and motive produces a life of Integrity and good character; ie., an impeccable reputation. Sought daily, it is not easy and requires diligence until it becomes habitual. It is a good code to follow and pursue whether one is a Martial Artist or not.

​​Maintaining integrity is critical for ones reputation, their name, their business, their family’s future endeavors and their organizations favorable recognition and function. The practice of this high

Hangul (Korean) for "Pil Sung"

Hangul (Korean) for “Pil Sung”

ideal is paramount not only for growth of the Martial Arts but for the acknowledgement that they are a worthwhile pursuit. Integrity protects all of these.

​For an individuals’ or instructors’ character and or an organizations’ reputation to be wrongfully attacked or maligned is an attempt to harm or destroy their integrity and all that its’ value bestows.

​Unfortunately, it seems not all persons involved in the Martial Arts world, whether in depth or on the fringe, either understands these principles – rules of action – or cares to follow them. They consider the ‘grinding of their own axe’ more important than the bigger picture of honesty and accepting the reasons behind the turn of events in their personal spheres that prompted their malicious behavior or comments.

​If a person thinks they have a legitimate concern, it is important that they are absolutely accurate with the facts and have completely validated their sources’ information as impeccable before publishing reports or articles about an individual or organization. To take partial uncorroborated statements not fully investigated nor verified by additional sources (also shown to be true in every aspect) and putting them in the wind of cyber-space public world view is grievously unjust at the least and potentially destructive at worst.

Has such an occurrence happened in the Martial Arts world? Sadly, yes; and, all too often, done out of malice because of a bruised ego. Someone either didn’t get promoted to the rank they wanted or wasn’t admitted to an organization they desired to join. So the person “bad mouths” the organization or instructor rather than seeking to comply with the instructors’ or organizations’ requirements.

GM Hall with one of her senior black belts 2011​If a person believes they have a case of unfair or prejudicial treatment by an instructor or organization, there are ways to professionally and politely address the perceived offense. Publishing innuendos, unsubstantiated accusations and disparaging remarks about someone or their organization on the web, Facebook, Twitter, etc., are not the ways. To attempt a ‘pay back’ over a perceived wrong in such a manner is cowardly and childish. If anything, ‘for those in the know,’ such action tends to put a large dampener and doubt on the credibility of the published remarks and, to the astute observer, raises questions regarding the motive(s) for the malignment. Sometimes such statements do not even relate to or hint at the root cause or issue that generated the publication. The true context behind the reason is not mentioned because it would have no bearing on the accusation or would reveal the whole article as pointless but for it’s malicious intent.

​If an aggrieved individual has a valid case, they can address the issue in several respectable ways. One is by written communication (yes – snail mail) with the aggrieved party stating the facts of the situation or their request with copies of pertinent documents as proof. This “old fashioned” method maintains a comfortable privacy in which to negotiate the issue while allowing time for thoughtful consideration between replies. The internet is not necessarily that secure and somethings are better solved privately.

​Sometimes a phone call politely spoken, honestly seeking equitable results, resolves matters pleasantly with a good outcome in both party’s eyes. In both written attempts to clarify an issue and phone conversations, the persons involved must be complete honest without guile or pretense. At some point ‘truth will out,’ in any event.

​If neither written communication nor a telephone call resolves the problem, then a face to face visit may be the way, even if it means traveling long distances to make it happen. A meeting face to face explaining the grievance or inquiring about the reason for an occurrence or action, decision or requirement of an instructor or organization is honorable. It is instructive and has the potential for an equitable solution, providing both parties are forthright and desire truth. There might be a reasonable explanation for why something happened or didn’t happen.

​The result from any of these methods of communication may or may not be the desired outcome of the aggrieved individual. Additional mature measures or meetings with a mediator may be needed. At some point, however, the aggrieved individual will have to accept the outcome, even if they don’t like it and move on in some other venue to accomplish their goal. At the end of the day, the process will have at least clarified the issue while precipitating an open dialog between the parties. It will have allowed the aggrieved individual to have shown themselves to be an honorable, reasonable adult rather than a rumor monger, childish whiner or malicious gossip.

​It takes resolve to be forthright in approaching or contacting someone to correct an issue. If that issue or situation is righteous, the courage will be there. All too often, however, the perceived problem lacks merit nor has any basis in fact; ergo, the malicious attack on cyber space making statements and innuendos not even related to the original issue and sometimes directed against the wrong party. The person or persons making the attacks takes the cowardly approach and tosses out malevolent accusations using the internet as their weapon. It’s a way of attempting to inflict damage from behind the scenes.

​For the wrongfully accused, the maligned instructor or ridiculed organization, not dignifying the attack with a response is sometimes the best recourse. It all depends on what was stated and whether it’s fall out is serious enough to merit legal action and all the involvement that such a response entails. Consulting an attorney or wise council will help to determine the prudent thing to do.

​The motive for a false and malicious attack is to raise doubts regarding an instructor’s expertise and reputation or an organization’s credibility in the minds of their respective students or members – the ultimate goal being to cause the students to quit and members to resign. The attacker wants a reaction. The more the thing is “talked about,” the more exposure of the false information and unsubstantiated statements; thus, the more potential damage to the victim before the truth is revealed. The “flap” in and of itself could cause some students or members to leave because the whole thing is viewed as instability and volatility: too much drama.

​So, depending on qualified advice, the less said the better. What goes around, comes around and the small minded, self-absorbed accuser eventually winds up “running their ship aground” to quote my Dad.

​In the meantime, for those under a malicious unfounded attack, Keep Shining: persist in what has made your respected, good reputation. Continue being and doing that which has caused others to seek out your knowledge and insight. The good you do and positive influence in the lives you and your organization touch will long outlast and surpass the uncorroborated, malicious attack. Nothing succeeds like success: nothing protects good character and reputation nor silences unfounded maliciousness so soundly as the unmitigated truth; ie., Integrity.

Pil Sung
Gwen F. Hall Sa Seong

Gwen F. Hall, 9th Dan (Grandmaster) Director Kido Kwan
Grandmaster Instructor at Hall Taekwondo-Do
Grandmaster Hall is a long time student of the martial arts having starred in Okininawain Karate in 1962 and becoming a lifelong student, instructor of Taekwon-Do since 1968 and attaining 9th Degree Black Belt in 2016. Grandmaster Hall is one of a select few females to ever attain to such high level and been consistently learning and teaching! She is available for consultations and seminars/testings in the greater Texas USA region.
Posted in General Martial Arts, Kido Kwan, Taekwon-Do (ChangHon) aka ITF, Taekwondo (Kukkiwon) | Leave a comment

Happy New Year, 신년인사

January 1st 2017

Letter No: 11

태권도를 사랑하는 모든분과 송무관 가족께 드립니다.

2017 정유년 새해를맞아 복 많이 받으시고 여러분의 가정에

건강과 행운이 가득하시기를 기원합니다.

지난한해 태권도의 전통무도와 가치향상을 하는데 열심히 뛰었습니다.

늘 성원과 격려를 보내주신 모든분들께 감사드립니다.

오는 한해에도 여러분과 더 큰 자긍심을 가질수있도록 더욱 열심히 하겠습니다.

노 희상

Dear Song Moo Kwan family members worldwide,

The advent of a new year is always a hopeful anticipation of new beginnings.

For us it is the continuation of hard work to build on the success of 2016.The year seemed to have gone quickly with all the activities: Conferences and Seminars and Black Belt promotions that occurred during the year. It is the effort of so many that you all need to be complimented for your dedication and hard work.

The New structure was officially launched last October was designed to honor the pioneers whose past and current presence inspires us all while keeping an eye on the future through the newly formed Executive Council.

In anticipation to the work that lies ahead I am asking you to consolidate and to work closer together as members of one family do while our office looks at the development of our Kwan.

Let’s hope that the New Year bring us more together and shall look forward to hearing news of your activities and successes.

I wish you all a Happy New Year 2017.

Yours in Song Moo Kwan

Ro, Hee Sang

World President of Song Moo Kwan Association

Doug Nowling, Director General
Nowling sahyun has been a long time student of the martial arts and a history major and has been published and continues to promote all martial arts via the Kido Kwan blogs.
Posted in Taekwon-Do (ChangHon) aka ITF | Leave a comment

Sometimes it is hard!

The learning process, regardless of the subject matter, has the same potential to find sticking points. Whether it is intellectual problem solving or physical development plateaus. These have only one way to finally develop further – the acceptance of being stuck. Getting stuck should be viewed as a chance to develop your problem solving skills further and refocus your commitment to your goals & keep going.

Since I have the fortune of having many very smart students and peers in my circle, I get to find compatible material that illustrates the learning process that martial artists go through. For that matter, everyone goes through in every topic and subject they ever find interesting.

Thank you, Master Susan Shirk, for finding this article and sharing it. The quoted portion below may sound familiar to my students.

Andrew Wiles: what does it feel like to do maths?
“Now what you have to handle when you start doing mathematics as an older child or as an adult is accepting this state of being stuck. People don’t get used to that. Some people find this very stressful. Even people who are very good at mathematics sometimes find this hard to get used to and they feel that’s where they’re failing. But it isn’t: it’s part of the process and you have to accept [and] learn to enjoy that process. Yes, you don’t understand [something at the moment] but you have faith that over time you will understand — you have to go through this.”

One of my favorite TED Talks can open the thought process for using these failings and subsequent stress to your advantage. I’ve posted it before but here’s the link again – How to make stress your friend | Kelly McGonigal

The next time that you get stuck on something, don’t let it be the end. Use it as a time to study further, talk to others working on the same material or take a breath and relax. The key point to all success is to keep learning/training. At every new step, it will be like starting over and the material will be more difficult. This is why the rank of 1st Dan black Belt is called Chodan (Korean)/Shodan (Japanese), which means “First Step”. It is the beginning, not the end, and you’ve practiced it for years with each colored belt rank you’ve earned.

Robert Frankovich on EmailRobert Frankovich on FacebookRobert Frankovich on GoogleRobert Frankovich on Linkedin
Robert Frankovich
Martial Arts Master Instructor at White Tiger Martial Arts
Frankovich sabum is a 6th Degree black who has published many articles and is strongly involved in promoting the Song Moo Kwan Taekwondo and Haidong Gumdo.
Posted in General Martial Arts | Leave a comment

Becoming Courageous & Strong Younglings (And Adults)

What seems like a lifetime ago now, my Aikido teacher in Duluth, MN challenged me to read Joseph Campbell’s Hero With A Thousand Faces. Sensei Brad Bergeron had the right idea. I have never read well and the book is a textbook, not a novel, so it took a while to get through it. The material within the book opened my thoughts to seeing more of how the world is connected. From the stories that we tell, to the way we interact with each other. We are all the Hero within our our story!

Recently I’ve found The Hero Round Table and the work they’re doing. The following is a talk from their Michigan event. It ties in the Joseph Campbell “Hero’s Journey” material.
Matthew Winkler: Mentoring Teenage Heroes

This is the full movie that Matthew Winkler showed a clip of during his talk. Note: the full movie is 90 minutes – The Timeless Tale of the Hero’s Journey: Full Film!

hero_pathSo, now that we’ve talked about becoming heroes and the steps that happen within the adventure, let’s look at our own life! You are the hero of your story. Everything is pretty “normal” in your world as you don’t know anything different (Status Quo). When you look back, how many things can you find that you thought everyone had or did until you met people from outside of your family? Is it “Duck, Duck, Grey Duck” or “Duck, Duck, Goose”? Soda or Pop?

These help to make your LIFE your call to adventure. Entering school begins your Hero’s Journey (Departure). Academics are often trials for many. The whole idea of cramming the knowledge into your brain for later use is a major challenge. Add into this personal struggles with dyslexia and others to have the first trials. This still hasn’t brought in the social aspects of putting so many heroes (younglings) in one place! Without getting into a whole tirade about bullying, the trials of youth are quite varied and dangerous.

This doesn’t really change once you’re past the completion of your education and have moved into the adult world. The same struggles repeat and repeat. It is truly the perspective of each hero to know where on the chart they are at any given time. Some meet trials and feel that they are actually the crisis. Sometimes the repetition is actually the completion of a cycle and coming back out of the status quo. Changing jobs can be a call to adventure as easily as a trial.

Your family (blood and other) plus your education start your assistance. This is where our martial arts school comes in. Too many schools have fallen into the commercialization and promote chasing the black belt prize. The goal has shifted away from creating heroes! One point that keeps getting repeated during training sessions with the U.S.A. Haidong Gumdo Association Senior Chief Master Marshall Parnell is that training should help us learn to become courageous. Developing courage is a key factor in permitting the student to take the steps outside of their comfort zone to learn more, develop further, and become more successful.

An extension of the assistance is the companion/comrade. The person(s) traveling with you during this adventure. They help fight the trials, help solve the crisis, and celebrate your success as if it was theirs. This person isn’t a sidekick. They are heroes themselves who are willing to be support because their ego doesn’t demand the spotlight. This is where you develop your “other” family. The ones who will grab a bag and head out with you immediately just because you’re going on an adventure.

This is what our school has to go beyond just earning a black belt. There is courage to test ourselves. The lessons learned through these tests are taken into every part of the student’s life. Relationships, careers and further personal development benefit from the support. I kinda picture our school as the way Batman prepared himself. He learned from many teachers. This made a very deep connection to them and made him part of their family.

Robert Frankovich on EmailRobert Frankovich on FacebookRobert Frankovich on GoogleRobert Frankovich on Linkedin
Robert Frankovich
Martial Arts Master Instructor at White Tiger Martial Arts
Frankovich sabum is a 6th Degree black who has published many articles and is strongly involved in promoting the Song Moo Kwan Taekwondo and Haidong Gumdo.
Posted in General Martial Arts | Leave a comment

The Unification Cases of Germany and Korea: A Dangerous Comparison (Part 1 of 2)


Germany’s unification in 1990 has remained a popular model for future Korean twokoreas_istock_25898184_xlarge-990x991unification, with its precedents on issues like the transfer of legal systems and technical standards, requirements for infrastructure investment, unification costs and social aspects.

A closer look, however, reveals that the differences between Germany and Korea far outweigh any similarities. This issue is not just an academic question; wrong assumptions can lead to wrong conclusions and to wrong policies. In the best case, such missteps would only waste money. In the worst case, however, they could lead to mismanagement of the unification process, with potentially disastrous consequences in the social, economic and security spheres.

In 1995, I wrote an article questioning the comparability of Germany’s reunification and the hypothetical case of Korea, and I find my arguments still to be valid.[1] The numerous differences between the cases form six clusters, which I will present in two parts for the sake of readability.

In the first part, I cover two large clusters of differences: 1) the influence of external forces on unification; and 2) domestic attitudes towards unification in both Koreas.

In the second part (coming soon), I discuss whether the German model is relevant for estimating the costs of Korean unification; how one side will likely be dominant over the other and how that will affect the general process of political, economic and social integration. Last but not least, I examine the differences between the German and Korean cases that now exist but are about to disappear.

Differences that Will Impact the Influence of External Forces on Unification

Legal status: German unification was a multilateral issue, whereas Korean unification would be a bilateral matter. By 1990, Germany was legally required to get permission from the four World War II allied powers to reunify. Not all of the allies were enthusiastic, considering the role a strong Germany had played in Europe in the 20th century. This problem was only overcome with massive support from then-US president George H.W. Bush and through major concessions to France and the UK with regard to the emerging European Union, which, appears to have been a mechanism to tame the German giant. The Soviet Union was offered substantial economic support to gain approval. The result was the so-called Two-Plus-Four Treaty.[2]

In the Korean case, an important international legal problem to overcome in the context of unification is the conclusion of a peace treaty to end the Korean War. Since the country was divided in 1948, prior to the start of the Korean War, a unification treaty does not necessarily have to address the end of the war, although it seems reasonable to expect the resolution of the peace treaty issue first. This is one reason why North Korea keeps bringing up this point in talks with the United States.

If the two Koreas decide to negotiate reunification, no external powers need to be consulted. Interference by neighbors is nevertheless to be expected, but their legal means of doing so will be limited. Therefore, from the perspective of international law, unification of the two Koreas will likely be easier and in any case very different compared to Germany.

Foreign troops: Prior to Germany’s unification, hundreds of thousands of heavily armed foreign troops were stationed on both sides. In Korea, fewer than 30,000 foreign troops are present in the South and none are in the North. Foreign troop withdrawal from North Korea will not be an issue after unification. The actual circumstances of unification, however, might tempt the US to maintain its presence on the peninsula in a bid to repeat what NATO’s Eastern expansion did in Europe—leave no vacuum and block the potential advance of a strategic adversary.

Geopolitical environment: The two Germanys were part of opposing sides during the Cold War. Their border ran through Europe’s densely populated and highly developed central region. Any invasion route either towards the West or the East would have crossed Germany. The Korean peninsula, by contrast, is on the periphery of the continent and only shares a border with the Northeastern provinces of China and a 17-kilometer division from a sparsely populated area of Russia’s Far East. North Korea is not part of any military block. The Cold War is long over, though a “Cold War 2.0” is developing, this time with the United States and China being the major strategic competitors. The impact of this situation is complex, and it will certainly differ from the German case.

Differences that Will Impact Domestic Attitudes towards Unification

Origin of division: Both countries were divided as a consequence of World War II. But while Germany’s division was by many seen as a form of punishment for one of the war’s aggressors, the Koreans were among the victims of Japanese aggression and thus regard their division as a great injustice. This history impacts the acceptance of division in both Koreas and adds a nationalist undertone to the unification debate.

West Berlin: This factor is among the most underappreciated. Complicated legal status notwithstanding (West Berlin was technically not a part of West Germany),[3] the divided capital city gave millions of (East) Germans a direct and daily encounter with the absurdity of division. They had ample opportunity to bump into the Berlin Wall, where they could hear life and see buildings, streets and neon signs on the other side. The West cleverly exploited this division, holding rock concerts[4] right at the Wall, for example. Korea has nothing even remotely comparable; the reactivated propaganda loudspeakers at the DMZ penetrate only a small distance into a sparsely populated area. Because Koreans have no everyday tangible experience of division, the resulting pain and frustration are smaller.

Naming: East and West Germany both called their country “Deutschland”[5] and their nationality “Deutsch.” In Korea, the North uses “Chosŏn” and the South uses “Han’guk.” Unless a compromise such as “Koryŏ” can be found, the dominance of one side will express itself in the very naming of the unified country. This may intensify feelings of colonization and fuel social conflict after unification. The same danger lingers in the choice of a unified Korea’s capital. The Germans made the Solomonic decision to choose Berlin, which was half West and half East. But how will Koreans in the North feel being governed from Seoul?

Ideological barriers: By the time of unification, aside from relatively soft propaganda wars, East and West Germans had no major axes to grind against each other. They had not fought a civil war nor tried to assassinate each other’s politicians. Koreans, however, tortured and killed each other during the Korean War and continued to do so thereafter.[6] This is a heavy legacy that must be overcome to make unification work. Dealing with the past will be a much bigger challenge for Korea. The still lingering problem of South Korea’s society to come to terms with the colonial past and the legacy of the military dictatorships under Park Chung-Hee and Chun Doo-Hwan provides no reason for optimism in this regard.

Ideological similarities: Due to the German invasion of European countries during World War II, West Germany only reluctantly allowed nationalism to grow while East Germany vigorously suppressed expressions of nationalistic sentiment.[7] During unification, Germany’s European neighbors watched closely to determine whether it would become a threat again. German nationalism was therefore completely banned from official discourse, preventing its use as a much-needed unification ideology. Germans from the East and the West still, after more than a quarter of a century, have different identities. In Korea, nationalism grew especially strong in resistance against Japanese attempts at assimilation during the occupational period and is still widely accepted today in both parts of the peninsula. It can serve as a joint ideological foundation for a unified Korea. Using nationalism to “grow together,” to paraphrase former German Chancellor Willi Brandt, thus will be much easier than it was in the German case. On the other hand, a unified Korea will have to manage the resulting concerns of neighboring countries.

Contacts: Decades before unification, East Germans could visit their relatives in West Germany on special occasions, such as around birthdays. East Germans of pension age could travel to West Germany regularly and move there freely. From 1980 to 1988, the number of recorded visits by East Germans to West Germany and West Berlin rose from 1.6 million to 7.8 million.[8] West Germans could travel to East Germany at any time, although registration was required and their movement was restricted. They could also use East German highways to drive through the country. There were daily phone calls and exchanges of letters. In the case of Korea, no people-to-people contacts exist except a few infrequent organized reunions of senior citizens.

Knowledge about the other side: Thanks to regular people-to-people exchanges and the legal availability of TV and radio programs on both sides, Germans had a fairly good understanding of each other. After unification, however, even this rather solid knowledge turned out to be often insufficient. The disastrous state of the East Germany economy, for instance, only became obvious to West German politicians after unification, and East Germans only knew what unemployment actually meant when they were personally affected. People in the two Koreas know much less about each other; North Koreans know almost nothing about reality in the South, except for the idealized images conveyed through smuggled soap operas. The South Koreans are equally banned from North Korean media[9] and direct contact, so perceptions of the North are shaped by propaganda and stereotypes. The post-unification reality shock therefore will be much bigger for the Koreans than it was for the Germans.

Number of defectors: In the 28 years between the construction of the Wall in 1961 and the peaceful revolution in 1989, a total of 3.5 million East Germans (on average 0.8 percent of the population per year) resettled in West Germany. In stark contrast, during the 63 years between the end of the Korean War in 1953 and 2015, only about 29,000 North Koreans (on average 0.002 percent of the population per year, or 400 times less in relative terms) resettled in South Korea. This is a complex topic, as the low number of North Korean defectors is itself a reflection of prevailing attitudes and structures. South Korea still does not encourage defection as much as West Germany did, even though recent statements by President Park seem to indicate a change in that policy.

Legitimacy of government: In East Germany, the government had long before unification lost the support of most of its people. Jokes about leading figures were popular and made rather openly. In North Korea, the leaders are highly revered and open criticism is very rare. Mass demonstrations leading to a change of system and government are not to be expected at the moment, although the outer appearance of strong internal coherence can be misleading. A growing number of recent informal visitor reports of openly expressed criticism indicate that the situation might indeed be changing, but such a process takes time to severely weaken government legitimacy.


After looking at only two out of six clusters of arguments, we already see that a closer look at Germany and Korea reveals a large number of differences. Some of them are seemingly minor, such as the naming problem, while others are potentially more weighty, like geopolitical positions and international legal considerations. We see that the image of two very different cases emerges, making a simple comparison highly questionable. This impression is further strengthened in the second part of this discussion, where we look at important areas such as unification costs and the relative power of both sides.



[1] A small selection: Rudiger Frank, “German Unification: Of Relevance for Korea?,” Korea-Forum 1-2 (1995): 9-11;  “독일 통일은 한국에 대한 모범인가?,” in독일 통일은 한국에 대한 모델인가? ed. Zanghyon Bak (Seoul: Munwŏn, 1999); Rudiger Frank, “The Political Economy of Unification: North Korea and Implications of the German Experience,” in Troubled Transition. North Korea’s Politics, Economy, and External Relations, ed. Choe Sang-Hun, Gi-Wook Shin and David Straub (Stanford: Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center), 229-254.; Rudiger Frank, “Unification and Capacity Building: The German Experience and its Declining Relevance for Korea,” in Crisis of Peace and New Leadership in Korea, ed. Chung-in Moon and John Swenson-Wright (Seoul: Yonsei University Press), 129-161.; Rudiger Frank, “The Costs of Korean Unification: Realistic Lessons from the German Case,” Korea’s Economy 30 (2016): 93-100,

[2] For the full text in German, see: “Vertrag über die abschließende Regelung in Bezug auf Deutschland,” Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung,1990,,0,0,Vertrag_%C3%83%C6%92%C3%82%C2%BCber_die_abschlie%C3%83%C6%92%C3%82%C5%B8ende_Regelung_in_Bezug_auf_Deutschland.html.

[3] This made the city a popular place for young West German men who wanted to avoid being conscripted into military service and therefore moved to West Berlin.

[4] For example, Barclay James Harvest appeared in 1980, David Bowie, Genesis and the Eurhythmics in 1987, and Pink Floyd in June 1988.

[5] East Germany was quite reluctant to use this term and tried to circumvent it, because “Deutschland” was associated with imperial ambitions and the Nazi period. It did not, however, come up with an alternative term.

[6] A small selection: the assassination attempt against Park Chung-hee in 1968 that killed the mother of the current South Korean president, the bombing of Korean Air flight 858 in 1987, the sinking of the ship Cheonan in 2010. We know little about South Korean terrorism against North Korea, but the example of Unit 684 (as made popular through the movie “Silmido”) provides a glimpse. See Norimitsu Onishi, “South Korean Movie Unlocks Door on a Once-Secret Past,” New York Times, February 15, 2004,

[7] This is not to say that such attempts were successful. Besides, especially during the 1980s when Soviet interference got weaker, the GDR experienced a careful neo-nationalist revival driven from the top. The rediscovery of the Prussian heritage in Berlin or the Saxonian heritage in Dresden is just one example.

[8] Clemens Vollnhals ,  Jahre des Umbruchs. Friedliche Revolution in der DDR und Transition in Ostmitteleuropa (Goettingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht), 109.

[9] Websites such as those of the Party newspaper Rodong Sinmun or the news agency KCNA are blocked on South Korea’s internet.

Doug Nowling, Director General
Nowling sahyun has been a long time student of the martial arts and a history major and has been published and continues to promote all martial arts via the Kido Kwan blogs.
Posted in Kido Kwan, Korean Studies & History | Leave a comment

Do they know your name?

One of the strangest parts of being in my martial arts school is that the less I talk to you, the better that you’re doing. This doesn’t mean that you receive less instruction for your curriculum. What it means is that you are figuring out what I want and developing how you do it best.

This idea comes up as one of the younglings is finishing an associate’s degree as part of the PSEO program and graduating from high school. The Dean of Students doesn’t know her name, which I think is a good thing. Since he deals with student disciplinary issues, I don’t want him to know her name. Yes, I do recognize that he may know her due to the work she’s doing and the impressive success that she’s creating. It tends to be the quiet ones that get more done.

The other day I was asked how I might deal with a disruptive student. A student who “doesn’t like to follow the rules” doesn’t have ADHD or ADD. They probably have not been given enforced boundaries, or not have been told “no” often enough, or are thinking that any attention is better than none. I do my best, after chatting with parents, to determine which on it is. The responses they get from me are according to what is determined.

discipline-is-just-choosing-between-what-you-want-now-and-what-you-want-most-discipline-quote-for-sharing-on-hi5This is where artificially created discipline comes into play. They are given the requirements for how to behave and may be given push-ups or such for not following those requirements. I have at times made the whole class do push-ups due to the action of one student. If the student is interested in class and cares about the group, the behavior usually changes quicker knowing that it involves others. Sometimes, peer pressure can be a good thing. How would you feel knowing the class is unhappy because of your actions?

When the issue is wanting attention, then I usually try ignoring them. The lesson is given and the work assigned with very little or no other interaction allowed. Checking on their progress during class is limited to questions about the material. The goal is to direct them toward recognizing that material development and questions concerning the improvement of the material will get them more notice. Once there, then they usually have figured out what they should really be working on and I talk to them less (again). The trick is to figure out who really wants to develop further and spend enough time with them while keeping the others in their “follower” mode until things click and they start looking deeper.

training_mind_to_thinkNow, these strategies have been successful but it may take a long time to create repetitive behavior. If the work is not re-enforced at home, the two hours per week of developing proper behavior and work is lost.

This brings to mind dog training issues. People take their dogs to obedience classes in order to get the dog to behave. The successful ones are those where the human is trained to communicate better with the dog.

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Robert Frankovich
Martial Arts Master Instructor at White Tiger Martial Arts
Frankovich sabum is a 6th Degree black who has published many articles and is strongly involved in promoting the Song Moo Kwan Taekwondo and Haidong Gumdo.
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discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishment

nicole-dragonfest2015Discipline is one of the most difficult words that I know. No, it isn’t a spelling thing! The difficulty comes from all the aspects that it encompasses. All of the little things that are required to truly have discipline.

The importance of goals will not be included here beyond the point that you NEED goals for your life in order to accomplish anything. How big your goals are will dictate how much discipline you need to develop.

U.S. Navy Adm. William H. McCraven in his speech to the University of Texas 2014 graduating class listed 10 Life Lessons from Basic SEAL Training.

1. If you want to change the world, start off by making your bed.
“If you can’t do the little things right, you will never do the big things right.”

It is amazing how something so small and trivial can start you out the right way. It isn’t about being rewarded by your parents for doing your chores. It is about taking responsibility to get things done. As Aristotle said…aristotle-excellence-quote-1024x555-1024x555

There are dozens of everyday things that help develop discipline. These range from following a bedtime and a wake-up time to regular oil changes in your car. Discipline allows you to build on successful and failed activities. It helps in remembering the lessons from everything that you do.

we-must-all-suffer-one-of-two-things-the-pain-of-discipline-or-the-pain-of-regret-and-disappointment-1024x520A common example comes from learning any subject. Once you set a goal (earn the next martial arts rank), you must spend the time and effort to learn and perform properly. It is common that students “think” they know their material but fail horribly when tested on it. This is usually from the lack of applying discipline to their training. I use pretests to show students that they aren’t as ready as they think. Once they’ve completed the pretest., I ask them if it was their best performance. Usually, they admit not. My next question becomes “why wasn’t it?” It may take several ranks of repeating this cycle before it sinks in but most eventually recognize that it is discipline that keeps “good enough” from ruining “excellent.”

It is important to utilize discipline in everything you do daily. The benefits of a little discipline changes your whole day just because you know where your car keys are. People also greatly enjoy when you apply discipline to getting things done that you said you would. This is also part of your career. Not completing tasks can lead to unemployment. In your private life, it builds trust and shows respect.

How can you tell if your discipline is lacking? I’ve asked students (in front of their parents) the question “How many times should you be told to do something??” The answer from students is “Once!” How many times did you need to be told to get the last project/chore done?

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Robert Frankovich
Martial Arts Master Instructor at White Tiger Martial Arts
Frankovich sabum is a 6th Degree black who has published many articles and is strongly involved in promoting the Song Moo Kwan Taekwondo and Haidong Gumdo.
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The End

be_a_black_belt“Start with the End in mind.” is a very popular concept for how to build a business. It helps create guidelines for what needs to be accomplished in order to succeed and reach a final goal. That’s tough when there really is no end to achieve. The martial arts is a lifelong journey that doesn’t have an end, just a few stopping points. It would explain why there is such a large attrition rate at Chodan (1st Dan Black Belt). In too many instances, the training is “sold” to “achieve” a black belt. Now that the goal has been reached, on to the next activity. That hard ending point doesn’t provide opportunities for further growth and development.

This seems to be a common thought in our society. People spend time being active in attaining goals but not in growing as a person. Trendy and popular has replaced knowledge and education. There are more people who can claim being a black belt everyday. The martial arts industry has bought into the concept also.  If you attend tournaments, how many people do the same pattern? How many of them are from the same school? What’s worse is how many, let’s say weapons patterns, are the same and being done by people from 10 different schools?

life-most_difficul_testI point this out as an illustration that even the martial arts has become so goal oriented that they use material from other schools to achieve goals (win trophies). This is a problem as it doesn’t teach anything beyond movement. When the same work is being copied without education or knowledge behind it, that activity loses purpose. I’ve used John Wooden’s “Never mistake activity for achievement” quote before. If your activity is to mimic someone else, did you actually achieve anything? Maybe it is just me but I enjoy watching my students do things much better than I can. It is their development that keeps the art alive. Yes, it is also good to get to say “I trained them.”

It is also their training that will help them develop in all the areas of their lives. The time spent mimicking others doesn’t help you in the end. Students regularly do this. A common scene is when I ask a student if they know their next hyung (pattern). Many reply that they are but they are the ones who are peeking over their shoulder to follow their peers. I use the correlation that, just like cheating on an test in school, if they get it wrong, so will you. Wrong techniques are compounded.

Those who are successful in life are those who figure out how to work hard and how to learn. Education, training, application and teaching will take you much further than mimicking others.

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Robert Frankovich
Martial Arts Master Instructor at White Tiger Martial Arts
Frankovich sabum is a 6th Degree black who has published many articles and is strongly involved in promoting the Song Moo Kwan Taekwondo and Haidong Gumdo.
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Thinking of the Kukkiwon

Activity01By KIM, UN-YONG
September 4th is a historical day in which I had Taekwondo adopted as an official Olympic sport in 1994 during the IOC session in Paris, which commemorated the 10th anniversary of IOC.

It just so happens that Hong Seungchon has been appointed as the Chairman of the Board of Kukkiwon, while OH Hyun-deuk has been appointed as the President of Kukkiwon. The two of them have now embarked on a new journey, promising a new leap forward for Taekwondo. Since they have devoted their whole lives to Taekwondo, I strongly believe that they will devote themselves to the development of Taekwondo.

Kukkiwon is the World Taekwondo Headquarters, which is the root of the country that gave birth to Taekwondo. In order to fulfill the expectations of Taekwondo practitioners, I established Kukkiwon in 1 year in 1972.

Modern Taekwondo began in 1972 with the foundation of Kukkiwon. In the process of making it into a national martial art, many innovations, growths, and stabilizations were accomplished, such as the integration of 30 “Kwans”, unification of the Dan Promotion Test, implementation of instructor training courses, establishment of Dobok (uniform), development of Poomsae, establishment of competition regulations, development of electronic Hogu (protective gear), establishment of a Hanmadang to succeed martial arts spirit, and the opening of Taekwondo Memorial Hall .

Furthermore, striving for globalization after achieving nationalization, Kukkiwon established the 1stWorld Taekwondo Championships and the World Taekwondo Federation in 1973, and joined GAISF, CISM, FISU, Asian Games, Pan Am Games, and the AfricanGames . In the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul, Taekwondo was chosen as a demonstration sport, and Kukkiwon was used as the official practice hall. Finally, in the IOC session in Paris in 1994, with a unanimous voting of 85 to 0, it was adopted as official Olympic sport, which occurred with Kukkiwon as the mother organization. Without this reformation and growth, the honor of Taekwondo being adopted as Olympic sport would not have been achieved even today.

In this process, by my own decision, I divided Taekwondo organization into 3 organizations, separating the roles for each organization. Kukkiwon was the root of Taekwondo, Korea Taekwondo Association was the center of the country that gave birth to Taekwondo, and World Taekwondo Federation was the mother organization of global distribution and international sports activities.

The mother organization for all of them was Kukkiwon. Thinking of Korea Taekwondo Association and World Taekwondo Federation without Kukkiwon or the background and support from Kukkiwon, I wonder if it would have been possible for them to become proud organizations looked up by the world, as they are now.

In this process, many world sports leaders came to Kukkiwon and learned about Taekwondo, which they were originally unfamiliar with. These leaders include the IOC President Antonio Samaranch, many IOC members, sports ministers from various countries, president of the International Taekwon-do Federation, president of Olympic Council of Asia(OCA), board of directors of International Military Sports Council(CISM) , presidents of National Olympic Committee(NOC) including USSR, East Germany and USA, and Muhammad Ali.

Taekwondo is an Olympic sport that developed while maintaining the spirit and tradition of martial arts spirit. I am very grateful that the government protects and supports it through domestic laws, and that corporations sponsor Taekwondo. However, those other than Taekwondo practitioners are just temporary custodians, and the owners of Taekwondo are Taekwondo practitioners.

The Chairman of the Board of Kukkiwon Hong Seungchon, who was elected this time, was originally a Taekwondo practitioner, and President OH Hyun-deuk is originally a Taekwondo practitioner as well as an administrator. They have newly launched with a new vision of Taekwondo. Since they are Taekwondo practitioners, I believe that they will devote themselves to develop towards the vision of Taekwondo.

Just as Kukkiwon, World Taekwondo Federation, and Korea Taekwondo Association formed a trinity and strove for the creation of Olympic history that surprised the world in the past, it is now time for every one of us to cooperate and put our forces together for the new leap forward for Taekwondo.
Un Yong Kim
Founder of Kukkiwon and World Taekwondo Federation
Former Vice President of the IOC

Doug Nowling, Director General
Nowling sahyun has been a long time student of the martial arts and a history major and has been published and continues to promote all martial arts via the Kido Kwan blogs.
Posted in General Martial Arts, Kido Kwan, Taekwondo (Kukkiwon) | Leave a comment

Discipline vs Self-Discipline

The martial arts are often thought of when parents want their children to learn discipline. This is a skewed view of what is actually taught. The martial arts teaches self discipline that the student uses to empower their life. It isn’t the same thing!

dsc_0010-300x232There are regular calls to martial arts schools, usually from mothers, asking if they will take a 4 year old, a 5 year old or a 6 year old because they have anger issues and need to develop discipline. These ages don’t learn “martial arts”. It is much more like organized play. They learn physical education concepts like balance, coordination and gross motor skills and they may resent being forced to go to class and treat it as a punishment preventing learning.

In addition to developing physically, they will start to develop self discipline. Because they choose to participate, these younglings will choose to stand still or do activities when asked. This is self discipline. They see the reward or outcome as something they desire. This desire allows them to focus and control what they are doing to create respectful and appropriate behavior. This happens for all students. Each one chooses to act according to how they are instructed and asked to attain goals that they view as worthwhile. Although most instructors can tell when it is “Fake Discipline” too!

What has been lost over time is the way in martial arts marketing is the inclusion of the word “self” when mentioning the benefits of training. The phrases used to describe the benefits of martial arts training had been self-discipline, self-control and self-esteem. All of these refer to something that you develop within yourself. This is done by focusing on the requirements and committing to the hard work needed to development them.


The twist here is that all of these come from an internal source Discipline taught at a military school uses externally enforced activity, where self discipline is developed internally. Once developed, the student can see better how their skills and knowledge can serve the family, community, nation. They’ve developed characteristics beyond those listed above, which now include respect, loyalty, dedication and hard work. Parents understand this concept because they’ve had to develop work habits and gain knowledge about working within a company and community. They forget that the role models used during their childhood was probably very different from the one’s around today.

The societal change to two income families hasn’t helped either. Having a parent home after school to teach younglings to “work with” them to accomplish chores and tasks created the discipline within the family. Growing up with respect and loyalty to their parents, grandparents and other relatives built the foundation that helped lead to their own self-respect and self-discipline. Much of this is lacking in homes today. Younglings are allowed to misbehave without correction from parents (for which ever reason) and often have using television and computers as a proxy to proper interaction. These are just a few thoughts behind why I typically take age 8 & up in Taekwondo and 12 & up in Haidong Gumdo. There are exceptions but mainly because a parent is also joining class. Also, if you ask any of my younglings, “Are there any kids in class?” They will answer you, “No, there are only students.” A question that I will ask often during class is “How many times should you be asked to do something?” They all, even the adults, know the answer is “Once.” The parents that are active with their child’s training hears this and knows what they should expect at home. The whole key to any of this, though, is that the youngling has to CHOOSE to work toward developing any of this knowledge and these skills. Discipline is not something that can be magically created within someone without their choosing to allow that growth.

“[…] It is through these habits that the young become old and kingly warriors.” ~ Instructions of Cormac

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Robert Frankovich
Martial Arts Master Instructor at White Tiger Martial Arts
Frankovich sabum is a 6th Degree black who has published many articles and is strongly involved in promoting the Song Moo Kwan Taekwondo and Haidong Gumdo.
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ETAT – Education, Training, Application, Teaching

DSC_0982The true method of personal development!

Over Labor Day weekend, I got to spend time with Supreme Grand Master Joon Pyo Choi at the grave side memorial that he hosted for the founder of Song Moo Kwan, Supreme Grand Master Byung Jick Ro, who had passed a year earlier. It fulfilled SGM Ro’s wishes that people didn’t travel and unnecessarily burden themselves in attempting to attend the funeral, yet provided the chance to honor him…especially by SGM Choi, who was his student of over 50 years.

During the presentations, SGM Choi commented about a concept that he believes was inspired through training with SGM Ro. This concept is ETAT – Education, Training, Application and Teaching. it is the way to create more personal development and growth.

SGM Choi stated that the way children learn today doesn’t help them grow as humans. They are educated but not trained. Add that any training they do get is not from where they are educated. The application of this knowledge is rarely shown and teaching is looked down upon as a lesser skill set.

All of this made a great deal of sense. I started thinking about his concept further and look forward to more discussions with him about it. There is much talk today about how poor the education system is. The new teaching methods (i.e. Common Core) become controversial. **Now, this isn’t a post about the politics of the education system, so please leave that out of comments.** This is about people being educated in a different manner than what had been done previously…or so they think. The majority of people that I’ve talked to about being educated in a certain manner have stated that they’ve regularly used some other method in order to get the “application” to work. They ended up “training” themselves to support the “education” being given. This seems to be a very big thing in mathematics. I know I don’t math well and have a couple tricks I use regularly.

The main concern today seems that the drive is to educate everyone the same way. Maybe education should provide methods to reach proper application and allow each person to train themselves in the techniques/skills that work best. Once this is allowed, the practice of those skills (training) will lead to better application. When people find success within their work, they’ll strive for that success in other areas.climb_tree

As they gain success, they will be willing to teach others how they do things. This will be an enormous change in learning. When someone doesn’t feel lesser about their “different” method of understanding, self esteem and confidence grows. All of this leads to healthier, happier people.

Those martial artists following the posts here will see that they’ve been working ETAT for a long time. They get educated on techniques. They train those techniques to become excellent. They develop the application of the techniques. They teach the techniques to those who start class after them.

One of the complaints throughout the martial arts has been people can “do” technique but they don’t know “what” the technique does. Practicing patterns is a prime example. Why is that technique done at that time in the pattern? How does the technique work beyond the pattern? If you can’t answer these questions, then you are stuck in the educate-train portion of your learning. Don’t stay there!

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Robert Frankovich
Martial Arts Master Instructor at White Tiger Martial Arts
Frankovich sabum is a 6th Degree black who has published many articles and is strongly involved in promoting the Song Moo Kwan Taekwondo and Haidong Gumdo.
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The Value of Training

Belts1-300x224How much time and effort are you willing to put into your martial arts (or any other activity for that matter)? Are you willing to travel? Are you willing to pay the fees?

If you answered “Yes” to those questions, you have probably traveled (or will travel) more than 50k miles and have (or will have) paid $25k to get the training that you want. Please note that I said TRAINING, not rank. Rank means nothing without having gained knowledge and experience beyond just doing what you’re told in order to perform a test.

Now, I do understand finances come into play with this BUT that shouldn’t be an automatic response when you hear that an event is upcoming. If money is a great concern, then you probably shouldn’t be training. I mean, if money is that tight, use it for higher priorities! Now that you’ve done the “Well, that’s not the point” response, you can admit that you may have the money but there are other conflicts or priorities.

Yes, everyone has to figure out their schedules in order to fit travel to seminars and events, which is where the next statement usually comes… “I don’t have the time off”. You may not, that’s fair, but, like the money reason, how often is it a knee-jerk response?

Both of these statements illustrate your thoughts regarding the value of your training. It is very difficult to explain “why” many of us will spend the money, use the vacation time (or lose the money because of missing a shift) and travel all over to train. A large part of it comes down to… “How much respect do you have for yourself?” If you have a serious interest in a topic/subject/activity, why not spend the time training?

Thinking about it, training may correlate to getting a dog. Think it’s a strange analogy? How about this, if you get the dog, you promise to feed it, walk it, train it, make sure it behaves. The whole while the dog is becoming family. When you’ve done all that work and spent the money on food and veterinarian bills, you recognize what joy and love has been in your world and how much it hurts when the dog passes. Is your training that valuable to you or did you stop feeding and walking the dog?

RDF-July2012-300x200My story is the only one I can use here but I know several others who have similar histories (but since I don’t have their details, I won’t add them here). Probably the saddest part of my martial arts career is that my parents never saw any of my tests or tournament action.

TAEKWONDO (36 years)
As a color belt in Taekwondo, our tests were regularly done as bigger groups. The closest test location, that happened one time only, had been a 20 minute drive but most were two hours. The black belt testings were typically two hours away and held the night before tournaments. This was back when tournaments were still on Saturdays. This meant traveling Friday, hotel Friday night, tournament Saturday & travel home Saturday evening. Now, the travel has resumed as I have been trying to learn from SGM Joon Pyo Choi in Ohio. These trips are a 12 hour drive, which I’m too old to want to do in one shot anymore, so it ends up as having a hotel for 4 nights as I attend his quarterly camps.

The training and testing was done locally. The color belt ranks were done by the instructor and the black belt ranks done by the system founder during his annual weekend training visit. Since the culture was vastly different from my 10 years Taekwondo experience, the opportunities to train with incredible instructors from within the system arose. This led to several road trips to St. Louis, MO and Battle Creek, MI plus a couple summer camps in California.

These road trips usually consisted of leaving at 6:00am Friday to drive 12 hours and get there in time to change and be on the mat at 7:00pm. The Saturday training was all day. Sunday would have training from 9:00am to Noon. We’d be back on the road by 1:00pm for the 12 hour drive home and, after a short sleep, be at work Monday morning at 8:00am. Since I’ve done contract security for a long time, in addition to teaching, these weekends meant that I’d lose 8 hours of pay in addition to the expenses of the trip. The only difference between these and the summer camps was flying instead of driving.

The first 5 years of my training had no additional opportunities. Once I started working with Master Marshall Parnell, though, I learned about the semi-annual Master’s training with Kwanjangnim Jeong Woo Kim. Taking advantage of this training meant that I’d have to travel to them. As many masters have full-time schools, training was during the week. These trips have been “travel day in, 3 training days, travel day out” consisting of food and four nights lodging. In the past five years I’ve been to Utah (twice), Texas and Pennsylvania for Master’s training. I have also gone to Utah for the 2011 PanAm Championships, South Korea for the 2012 World Championships and Nevada for the 2016 PanAm Mulimpia

Master_Jose__Master_F-210x300I have never even thought of keeping track of the total expenses. I know that I would not trade the knowledge, experience and memories for anything. Traveling to St. Louis for one seminar had 10 of us in two cars with walkie-talkies telling jokes between cars the whole drive. The socializing that happened and all of the incredible people that I met are immeasurable.

I do completely acknowledge that all of this effort has put a strain on many aspects of life, with finances and family being the most obvious. I do think that it has been worth it and probably won’t change any of it until I can’t train any longer.

So, what is the value of your training? What are you willing to do to achieve the goals that you see? The characteristics of serving, humility and dedication are reflected here. These are part of who a martial artist…warrior…is beyond the physical training that they do. I urge you to look at training events as the opportunity it is, not the expense that comes from it. I believe that my training, and all the other benefits that have come from it, are priceless!

And what have I gotten for all the years of training, money spent and time invested? A box full of paper and stuff collected over the past 36 years. Was it worth it, or is it ALL that I have from this time spent training?


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Robert Frankovich
Martial Arts Master Instructor at White Tiger Martial Arts
Frankovich sabum is a 6th Degree black who has published many articles and is strongly involved in promoting the Song Moo Kwan Taekwondo and Haidong Gumdo.
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carelessness-568x1024“JRD Tata had a friend who used to say that he misplaces and loses his pen very often. He will use only very cheap pens so that he need not worry about losing them. He was worried about carelessness habit. JRD suggested to him to buy the costliest pen he could afford and see what happens.

He did that and purchased a 22 carat gold Cross pen. After nearly six months JRD met him and asked him if he continues to misplace his pen. His friend said that he is very careful about his costly pen and he is surprised how he has changed! JRD explained to him that the value of the pen made the difference and there was nothing wrong with him as a person!

This is what happens in our life.We are careful with things which we value most.

If we value our health, we will be careful about what and how we eat;

if we value our friends, we will treat them with respect;

if we value money, we will be careful while spending;

if we value our time, we will not waste it.

if we value relationship we will not break it.

Carefulness is a basic trait all of us have,we know when to be careful! Carelessness only shows what we don’t value…… ”
I found this picture in a post and thought it was well done. It made me think about all of the time I’ve spent making sure tools and such always got put back where I got them from.

Had you thought of the definition of “careful” in this manner? Probably not.

I know part of this was conditioned into me from my Father. He spent his days working on iron ore mining equipment. Tools were very important. I would get a good lecture every time I didn’t get things back where they belonged. At the time, the only real lesson that I learned from this was that it helps a job/project go smoother if tools are put back so when working you know where they are.

I’d wager that you can understand this idea from having lost – misplaced – your keys a few times. The frustration and wasted time are worse than not knowing where they are. This gets us started on developing habits, some call “rituals”, to help keep things running smoothly. These habits also illustrate the point in the story here. The more valuable the item, the more careful we are with managing it. Here’s where the twist comes in, though. These carefulness habits aren’t only for you and your stuff!

Looking at what working with my Father’s tools, it did teach me that the tools were valuable to him. By treating them as he dictated…asked…it taught me carefulness of someone else’s feelings. The loss of a tool caused frustration and pain. That is NOT something that I wanted to cause my Father. he deserved more respect than that. I know I wasn’t very good and I didn’t try hard enough, so I’m grateful that he forgave me and kept helping me.

enablerThis carefulness is illustrated in the last point of the picture. “If we value relationship we will not break it.” The care taken to not hurt those you care about IS important. This does also carry over into supporting those who you have a relationship with. This is important as “careful” equates to “being full of care” and can be viewed poorly by those you care about. Hopefully, they will still love you even if they don’t like you for a while.

Sadly, carelessness happens more often. In simple little things like using turn signals or not stopping AT the line for traffic signals. Parking in two spaces (maybe that’s arrogant, too). It also shows in how much time you spend looking at your phone when you have people sitting next to you. How many others can you add without much thought?

“Carefulness is a basic trait all of us have, we know when to be careful.” It shows in the respect that you give. it shows in the discipline that you develop. It shows in the “service to others” than you provide.

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Robert Frankovich
Martial Arts Master Instructor at White Tiger Martial Arts
Frankovich sabum is a 6th Degree black who has published many articles and is strongly involved in promoting the Song Moo Kwan Taekwondo and Haidong Gumdo.
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Please Help Us Support Wounded Warrior Project


As many of you know, I’m passionate about giving back to our nation’s service members – the few who fight to protect the freedom of this great country. Often times many of these inspiring individuals come home with wounds you can and can’t see, like a missing limb, combat stress, or depression. Because they’ve risked everything for us, I’m committed to raising awareness and funds for these wounded service members and their caregivers.

I am proud to host an event benefiting an organization whose mission is to honor and empower Wounded Warriors. Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) has a big, audacious goal: to foster the most successful, well-adjusted generation of wounded service members in our nation’s history. I’m challenging myself to help WWP reach this vision, and I need your help.

WWP offers 20 holistic programs to wounded service members and their caregivers completely free of charge and 100% of the funds raised through the this event go directly to Wounded Warrior Project to help fuel these programs.

Please join my effort and give what you can by donating through my page. Click the donate button at the top and enter the amount you are able to give. Thank you in advance for your support!

Doug Nowling, Director General
Nowling sahyun has been a long time student of the martial arts and a history major and has been published and continues to promote all martial arts via the Kido Kwan blogs.
Posted in Taekwon-Do (ChangHon) aka ITF | Leave a comment

ROK blocks DPRK in martial arts competitions


visual_rolling08SEOUL, July 27 (Yonhap) – The South Korean government has blocked North Korea’s participation in a martial arts competition here in September, after Pyongyang accepted an invitation, a Washington-based news media report said Wednesday.symbol

According to Voice of America (VOA), the organizers of World Martial Arts Masterships asked George Vitale, the spokesman of the North Korea-led International Taekwondo Federation (ITF), to check whether North Korean taekwondo practitioners are willing to participate in its inaugural event in Cheongju, some 130 kilometers south of Seoul.


George Vitale receiving honorary doctorate from DPRK

Vitale, who was in Pyongyang last month for the ITF’s 50-year anniversary event, told the VOA that North Korea accepted the organizer’s offer. However, the South Korean government blocked the North Koreans from competing in the event, citing the recent situation with the North. Following Pyongyang’s fourth nuclear test in January and additional missile tests, the relationship between the South and the North has been cold.

mascot_engAccording to the VOA, the South Korean government told the organizers that it will not allow North Korean athletes to enter South Korea and added that since North Chungcheong Province, not a private entity, is the main organizer, it will not oppose the central government’s decision.

The World Martial Arts Masterships is set for Sept. 2-8. The event aims to bring together some 2,100 people from 60 countries and offer 15 martial arts programs, including taekwondo, judo and kickboxing.

Doug Nowling, Director General
Nowling sahyun has been a long time student of the martial arts and a history major and has been published and continues to promote all martial arts via the Kido Kwan blogs.
Posted in General Martial Arts, Kido Kwan, Taekwon-Do (ChangHon) aka ITF, Taekwondo (Kukkiwon) | Leave a comment

2016 Kukkiwon Masters Certification Course

Kukkiwon logo

July 2016  
2 Ways to Register by August 15,2016:
(1) Online Pay & Register:
(2) Mail registration form (link below) & mail check payable to “USSTF”:
Dae Han Martial Arts, 1755 Dennis KempLane, Kennesaw, GA 30152
Please click on this link to download the Registration Form below.
KH Kim Taekwondo, 3141 Dundee Rd., Northbrook, IL 60062
Sent by in collaboration with

Doug Nowling, Director General
Nowling sahyun has been a long time student of the martial arts and a history major and has been published and continues to promote all martial arts via the Kido Kwan blogs.
Posted in General Martial Arts, Kido Kwan, Taekwondo (Kukkiwon) | Leave a comment

Passing of Grandmaster John Tompkins

John Tompkins, 1984

John Tompkins, 1984 A-4-31

We are sad to learn of the passing of Grandmaster John Tompkins July 6, 2016.  GM Tompkins was 72 and first joined the ITF after his service with the U.S. Army and served as a aviation crew member for the Huey platform while in Vietnam.  GM Tompkins was known for his technical ability and could both verbally and in writing detail minute Taekwon-Do movements and ideas and his written color belt manual is still one of the best out there.



Doug Nowling, Director General
Nowling sahyun has been a long time student of the martial arts and a history major and has been published and continues to promote all martial arts via the Kido Kwan blogs.
Posted in General Martial Arts, Kido Kwan, Taekwon-Do (ChangHon) aka ITF | Leave a comment

Grandmaster Promotions Annouced

Author with General Choi, 1981 Chicago, IL. U.S.A.

General Choi 7 Gwen F. Hall, 1981 Chicago, IL. U.S.A.

With the birth of Taekwon-Do on April 11 1955 when Taekwon-Do was given its name, many in the  name of Taekwon-Do have been promoted to 9th Dan (degree).  General Choi first appointed 9th Dan was Rhee, Ki-ha of Scotland, followed closely by Chuck Sereff and then Hwang, Kwang-sung in 1997.  These are of course 9th Dans in the International Taekwon-Do Federation and do not include those promoted in any of the ITF’s since or other organizations in the world.  However, with so many grandmasters its a matter of time in grade, or connections of financially motivated promotions that we see all to much in the world of Taekwon-Do.

Today is one of those days that I can say is a great day in the world of Taekwon-Do, the Kido Kwan and its members and martial artist in general.  I am pleased to announce that
Master Gwen F. Hall of Corpus Christi Texas USA is now recognized as GRANDMASTER GWEN F. HALL 9th Dan.  Grandmaster Hall has been involved in the martial arts for over fifty years actively teaching during the whole time.  She has been involved in Taekwon-Do since 1968 and is senior to so many other Grandmasters that have been promoted before her.  So please take the time to thank Grandmaster Hall by sending her a congratulations email message and please feel free to contact her for any help in the Taekwon-Do field.

We will upload an updated bio soon!

Doug Nowling, Director General
Nowling sahyun has been a long time student of the martial arts and a history major and has been published and continues to promote all martial arts via the Kido Kwan blogs.
Posted in General Martial Arts, Kido Kwan, Taekwon-Do (ChangHon) aka ITF | Leave a comment

2015 Kukkiwon Invitational Course in USA

October 24, 2015


With the authority and responsibility to maintain “global standards,” the Kukkiwon is implementing regulations in the U.S. that are already successfully established in Korea and other countries.

The Kukkiwon policy does not change anything for the individuals testing for 1st and 2nd Dans. Individuals testing for 3rd through 7th Dans will need to be tested by a licensed Kukkiwon Test Examiner.

Masters and Grandmasters who want to certify their own students should know current Kukkiwon standards by becoming licensed Kukkiwon Test Examiners. They can then promote their own students at their own location and with their own schedule.

Regional Panels of Test Examiners will be set up in each state and will only need to be responsible for their own state.

The Kukkiwon has a very clear picture of dojang operations worldwide, and as a “base” for examinations, the Kukkiwon standard was created as a minimum and allow instructors to include their personal material.

Testing is supposed to be an “Examination,” where the student is tested on the required material as articulated in the Kukkiwon rules. Those conducting the examination need to have command of the testing material and be trained in how to score the different elements of the examination, in order to render a fair and qualified opinion on the student’s ability to meet a “specified” standard during the examination. Testing is not a “demonstration”; it is an examination. Testing is about the “student,” not the audience.

The organization that was given the lead five years ago to assist the Kukkiwon with the regulations not only failed in their attempts, but their actions have delayed the standardization in the U.S., and they are now working to discredit the Kukkiwon.

To retain some semblance of order and presence for the Kukkiwon practitioners in America, MOU organizations were selected and were given the same opportunity, as was given to the WTMU, to assist in establishing the standards. Only the WTMU has fully invested the time, effort, and its resources, into helping the Kukkiwon here in America.

Bringing high standards and respect to Taekwondo, the Kukkiwon will continue to execute their federated strategy and regionalized examination panels with an inclusive mindset, so all Taekwondo practitioners in America have access to the Kukkiwon.

The Kukkiwon urges all Taekwondo masters to come into compliance with existing policies of the Kukkiwon. Active resistance to adopting the Kukkiwon test policies will not be tolerated.


KH Kim, 9th Dan Kukkiwon

World Taekwondo Masters Union
3141 Dundee Road, Northbrook, IL 60062
Office: (847) 480-9224
Direct: (630) 390-9975
Fax: (847) 480-9255

— for more information and to register —

Please visit KUKKIWON AMERICA at

Email us at,

or Call us (630) 390-9975.

Kukkiwon Poom/Dan Promotion Test Examiner Course Schedule & Guideline

DATE: November 19-22, 2015
VENUE: Hyatt Deerfield ADDRESS: 1750 Lake Cook Road, Deerfield, IL 60015
RESERVATION: $89 per night inc. breakfast, Special Hotel rate through WTMU
TRANSPORTATION: English-American Taxi (847) 673-1000
Korean language – Express Taxi (847) 253-9000

MANDATORY CHECK-IN: Thursday, November 19 (5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.)
Bring a form of identification.
SEMINAR SCHEDULE: Friday, November 20 – full day
Saturday, November 21 – full day
FINAL REVIEW & TEST: Sunday, November 22 ( 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.)
Must stay for the duration; Anyone leaving before 3pm will be disqualified.

ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENT: Taekwondo Masters, 4th Dan & higher
Non-U.S. citizens must provide a copy of their Green Card or Driver’s License.

Please submit the Kukkiwon Events Registration Form
either via email (, fax (847) 480-9255, or send to:
Kukkiwon America
3141 Dundee Road
Northbrook, IL 60062

Please click on this link to download the below Registration
KH Kim Taekwondo | 3141 Dundee Rd. | Northbrook | IL | 60062

Doug Nowling, Director General
Nowling sahyun has been a long time student of the martial arts and a history major and has been published and continues to promote all martial arts via the Kido Kwan blogs.
Posted in General Martial Arts, Kido Kwan | Leave a comment

Russia and North Korea to Co-Produce Film On Taekwondo History

The film will be the first co-production project between the two countries in over 25 years.

Russia is planning the first co-production with North Korea since the Soviet era as part of a larger scheme aimed at stepping up film collaboration with the rogue nation.

State-backed Russian and North Korean filmmakers are planning a feature on the history of traditional Korean martial art of taekwondo, producer Yuri Mityushin told a news conference in Moscow on Tuesday.

“This picture will tell the story of taekwondo development,” he said. “It has a very long history and was known even in Czarist Russia. In addition, we are planning several more co-productions [with North Korea].”

A delegation of North Korean filmmakers is currently on a visit to Moscow, timed to a series of screenings of North Korean films.

According to Mityushin, who organized the screenings and the visit, the North Korean filmmakers are also scheduled to discuss collaboration with the state-run studios Mosfilm and Gorky Studio and talk with Russia’s main film school, VGIK, about accepting North Korean students.

Film ties between Russia and North Korea broke with the collapse of the Soviet Union. Before that, the Soviet Union and North Korea co-produced several movies, mostly focused on World War II events.

The most recent of those, Bereg spaseniya (Salvation Shore), directed by Arya Dashiyev, was released in 1990.

The announcement comes against the backdrop of Russia trying to step up co-production with other countries. Recently, co-production projects with China and India have been discussed.

Doug Nowling, Director General
Nowling sahyun has been a long time student of the martial arts and a history major and has been published and continues to promote all martial arts via the Kido Kwan blogs.
Posted in General Martial Arts, Kido Kwan, Korean Studies & History, Taekwon-Do (ChangHon) aka ITF | Leave a comment

I Am Taekwondo!



The date of birth of the founder of Taekwon-Do, Choi, Hong-Hi is approaching.  November 9th, make a difference!  Show the would that you are TaekwonDo!  Hold the sign, or make your own declaring ” I am TaekwonDo” and then give to your local community in any fashion, monetarily or with your time!  Spread peace and good will with your actions, not your by words only!  Help others in the name of “Taekwon-Do”

Doug Nowling, Director General
Nowling sahyun has been a long time student of the martial arts and a history major and has been published and continues to promote all martial arts via the Kido Kwan blogs.
Posted in General Martial Arts, Kido Kwan, Korean Studies & History, Taekwon-Do (ChangHon) aka ITF | Leave a comment

Help us Help You!

Tell us what you think!  helpEmail us and tell us what you think, what you would like to see, email with your students profiles, achievements, your schools, instructors etc.  We will be happy to promote your events, testings etc.  If you have an article you wrote, let us know, we will be happy to post it!

Doug Nowling, Director General
Nowling sahyun has been a long time student of the martial arts and a history major and has been published and continues to promote all martial arts via the Kido Kwan blogs.
Posted in General Martial Arts, Kenpo, Kido Kwan, Korean Studies & History, Taekwon-Do (ChangHon) aka ITF | Leave a comment

WTF Taekwondo Demo Team will perform at the UN Headquarters

The World Taekwondo Federation said today (Sunday) the will perform at the UN Monday.

Doug Nowling, Director General
Nowling sahyun has been a long time student of the martial arts and a history major and has been published and continues to promote all martial arts via the Kido Kwan blogs.
Posted in General Martial Arts, Kido Kwan, Taekwon-Do (ChangHon) aka ITF | Leave a comment
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