Master Gary Tong C.Y  

International Taekwon-Do Master Instructor 

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ITF Patterns

Posted by Master Gary Tong on October 11, 2014 at 6:10 AM

Ch'ang-Hon Taekwon-Do /ITF Patterns




Patterns or forms ("tuls" in Korean, equivalent to the kata in karate) originally called Hyung, are considered by many to be one of the most important aspects of training in Taekwon-Do. The patterns practised by members of the ITF are originally the patterns of the OH DO KWAN and rather different from those performed by Kukkiwon, especially the Taegeuk Poomsae, and form one of the major differences between the two styles.


The majority of the patterns (excepting Ul-Ji and Tong-Il) start with a defensive move, which emphasizes Taekwondo's defensive nature. All of the patterns start and end at the same location*. This ensures that the practitioners' stances are the correct length, width, and in the proper direction.


*It should be noted that every school puts their own "twist" on the patterns, doing each of them a little differently than other schools. The basic techniques are also altered based on the preference/philosophy of the instructor.


There are 24 patterns (틀) in the official ITF syllabus, developed by General Choi with assistance form associates such as Nam Tae Hi, Kim Bok Man, Han Cha Kyo, CK Choi and Park Jung Tae. General Choi also developed the Confucious based Korean Patriotic philosophy of each pattern. The names of these patterns typically refer to a patriotic instance or person of Korean history, with the exception of the controversial Juche Tul. They are as follows (with Hangul/Hanja names), and with related articles:


Chon-Ji (천지/天地) 19 Movements

Dan-Gun (단군/檀君) 21 Movements

Do-San (도산/島山) 24 Movements

Won-Hyo (원효/元曉) 28 Movements

Yul-Gok (율곡/栗谷) 38 Movements

Joong-Gun (중근/重根) 32 Movements

Toi-Gye (퇴계/退溪) 37 Movements

Hwa-rang (화랑/花郎) 29 Movements

Choong-Moo (충무/忠武) 30 Movements

Kwang gae (광개/廣開) 39 Movements

Po-eun (포은/圃隱) 36 Movements

Ge back (계백/階伯) 44 Movements

Eui-am (의암/義菴) 45 Movements

Choong jang (충장/忠壯) 52 Movements

Juche (주체/主體) 45 Movements

Sam il (삼일/三一) 33 Movements

Yoo sin (유신/庾信) 68 Movements

Choi-yong (최영/崔榮) 46 Movements

Yong gae (연개/淵蓋) 49 Movements

Ul ji (을지/乙支) 42 Movements

Moon moo (문무/文武) 61 Movements

So san (서산/西山) 72 Movements

Se jong (세종/世宗) 24 Movements

Tong-il (통일/統一) 56 Movements

Originally there was another pattern called Ko dang(39 Movements), but this has been replaced by Juche in the current official syllabus of the ITF. As Juche is an important element of North Korean ideology, this change is sometimes controversial. In some studios, Juche is taught in addition to Ko-Dang, rather than replacing it, because the instructor feels that both are important.


It is also interesting to note that Oh Do Kwan representative HYUN, Jong Myung was one of the eight people from various kwans who created the Palgwe and Dan Poomsae (patterns) for the Korea Taekwondo Association in 1965, and was also on that same committee when the Palgwe Poomsae was replaced with the Taegeuk Poomsae, and some Dan Poomsae was revised in 1971–72, for the Kukkiwon.



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