Archive For The “Leaders” Category

2017 New Year Greeting From Kwan Jang Nim

2017 New Year Greeting From Kwan Jang Nim

Reading Time: 5 minutes.

New Year Greeting 2017

H.C. Hwang

H.C. Hwang

2016 was a busy year for the Moo Duk Kwan® worldwide and it was filled with very meaningful Moo Duk Kwan® events and activities.

I would like to express special thanks to all who participated in International, National, and Regional events supporting Soo Bahk Do® throughout the year of 2016.

I also extend my sincere thanks to all the family members who supported the practitioners while they participated in all the 2016 events.

Your individual participation and "Action, Action, Action" created the success of each event.

I wish to share on some particulars of recent events in 2016.


Ko Dan Ja Shim Sa (KDJSS)

The Korea Ko Dan Ja Shim Sa, South America Ko Dan Ja Shim Sa, and U.S.A. Ko Dan Ja Shim Sa were successfully completed with practitioners demonstrating high levels of:

  • Il Kwan Seong (Standardization),
  • Iyon Kwan Seong (Connection) and
  • Heng Dong Chul Hak Kang Hwa (Strengthening philosophy through Action).

2016 marked the 33rd  year of the Moo Duk Kwan® week long Ko Dan Ja Shim Sa.

The Ko Dan Ja Shim Sa experience has provided opportunities for many senior Dans to remain inspired and active in the art by defining and creating a depth of Soo Bahk Do® knowledge that is unique to the Moo Duk Kwan®.

Many current leaders previously graduated from the Moo Duk Kwan® Ko Dan Ja Shim Sa experience and are currently serving the art worldwide.

The Moo Duk Kwan® Ko Dan Ja Shim Sa experience contributes to the strong worldwide connection among  Soo Bahk Do® practitioners who embrace Moo Duk Kwan® standard curriculum and instruction.

“Il So Il So, Il Lo Il Lo”

You can view photos of various 2016 Ko Da Ja Shim Sa here:


The 1st WMDK Youth Leaders Symposium

October 7-14, 2016  in Korea Nineteen (19) highly motivated Moo Duk Kwan Youth Leaders gathered in Korea from thirteen (13) countries.

During the week of the Youth Leaders Symposium, they strengthened their bonds through sharing good training and improving their understanding of their role and leadership opportunities within the Moo Duk Kwan®.

They created a Youth Leaders Mission Statement to clarify their goals and to help establish an informed network of participants to support and implement their goals.

Those in attendance demonstrated their motivation and initiative by quickly producing their first video project which serves as a testament to their leadership potential.

Their video has been quite successful and popular as they prepare the next ones to achieve their mission.

The 2nd Youth Leaders Symposium is scheduled for October 20th to 27th 2017 in Korea.  There are high interested in attending from more countries in 2017.


Supporting our next generation of leaders

Change is a natural phenomenon.

Around the world, 2016 experienced noticeable changes in leadership activity by the next generation.

For example the very well organized and memorable event hosted in Palma De Mallorca November 4-6, 2016 by the Spain Federation which is one of the youngest entities in the Euro Federation.

Founder Hwang Kee expressed his VISION for the Moo Duk Kwan® and his dedicated followers and disciples have been implementing his vision since the Moo Duk Kwan® was founded in 1945.

The next generation of Moo Duk Kwan® leaders shall also preserve his VISION and promote it consistently worldwide using modern technology such as social media to help create increased public awareness and understanding of our art.

“Honoring the Past, Creating the Future”.

We should all participate to support natural change.


One Moo Duk Kwan®

The Founder's Moo Duk Kwan® was the most influential martial art organization in Korea by 1961.

Unfortunately, in the early days of Korea's development as an independent nation, the Moo Duk Kwan® was badly impacted by the political birth of, and government sponsorship of,  Tae Kwon Do in early 1960’s.

At that time,  a number of Moo Duk Kwan® Alumni and supporters chose to join the Tae Kwon Do organization being sponsored by the government.

Since those days, there has not been any significant or official interaction between the Moo Duk Kwan® students training in Soo Bahk Do and (tang soo do) and those practitioners training in Tae Kwon Do organizations.

2016 marked the 1st time in almost a half century that Moo Duk Kwan® alumni who have been training in Tae Kwon Do have expressed interest in reconnecting with their Moo Duk Kwan® heritage by attending a special training session at the Moo Duk Kwan® central Headquarters.

During these special seminars, the Moo Duk Kwan® history and basic teaching from the Founder Hwang Kee were shared with them.


Recently, the USA Federation successfully defended our Moo Duk Kwan® identity from individuals who were seeking to use the well established reputation of the Moo Duk Kwan® for their own advantage.

It is now time for all of us to join in and support unified global efforts to protect and preserve our identity that is connected with our trademarks, service marks and intellectual property (IP).

I am pleased to share the Founder's teachings and vision with any lost Moo Do family members we encounter who wish to make their home in the Moo Duk Kwan®.

We have the opportunity to also explore and embrace these opportunities as we move forward in pursuit of our mission.

We wish you and your family the best during the holiday season and hope you have a happy and prosperous New Year 2017.

Yours in Moo Duk Kwan,

H.C. Hwang and Family

Soo Bahk Do Institute

New Year Greeting 2016<br /><span style='font-family: arial, helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12pt; color: teal;'>by H.C. Hwang</span>

New Year Greeting 2016
by H.C. Hwang

Reading Time: 4 minutes.

2016 New Year’s greeting

I hope this message finds you and your family in the best of health and spirits as you are receiving a bright New Year.

70th_logo_nobkgrnd_755x796-142x150There were many meaningful Moo Do events that took place worldwide throughout the year in 2015.

I would like to recognize some of them as we enter the New Year.

  1. The Moo Duk Kwan 70th year celebration in Korea (October 30th to November 1, 2015) in South Korea:  It was a powerful experience to see how the Founder Hwang Kee’s vision (from 1945) has grown over the 70 years since the Moo Duk Kwan inception.
    Members from different countries gathered at the mother land of the Art and strengthened their old friendships and made new friendships while sharing the same values and pride in the Moo Duk Kwan. It was an experience that strengthened our appreciation for our gift from the Founder and the Moo Duk Kwan patch, that has guided us toward our clear objectives.
    I invite you to join me in continuing our celebration of the 70th year of the Moo Duk Kwan® with our actions throughout 2016.
  2. 2007_FEDPATCH_CutOut_j_150x149The United States Federation successfully protected the identity of Moo Duk Kwan® which was built 70 years ago by the Founder Hwang Kee.
    The verdict and judgment was filed in favor of the plaintiff, the US Federation. This stands as an moo-duk-kwan-alumni-patches-various-v1a-cutout-600x600example that the US Federation will defend against trademark infringers as they have over the past 40 years, and they will prevail as they have in all cases.
    This action and verdict is a victory for all WMDK organizations and sends a clear message to those who infringe upon the intellectual property rights of others. I hope all Moo Duk Kwan® Alumni embrace the spirit of “Only One Moo Duk Kwan” by recognizing the rich history of the Moo Duk Kwan. Our unity will strengthen our Moo Duk Kwan identity for all practitioners.
  3. Recognition of leaders who were great supporters for PVT II: Your Vision Tour (PVTII) was greatly inspiring, motivating, and supported the transition of our young leaders into roles that are important to the preservation of our art and the future of the Moo Duk Kwan.

    In Seok Kim
    (Dan Bon 12) who was a student of the Founder Hwang Kee.  He was an inspirational to his students by providing education about the uniqueness of Moo Duk Kwan

    Vic Martinov (Dan Bon 10189) who was a role model for anyone wishing to be a true Martial Artist and to understand the value of “Neh Ghang Weh Yu”. He understood the Moo Do and its application in life. He further shared himself by Action as well as great stories with others. He is my friend.

    Jong Kuk Hong (Dan Bon 15856) who I met mid 1960s in Korea and had served the Art. He shared many stories of the Moo Duk Kwan with his students.

    Jack Helfgott (Dan Bon 26104) who studied at the Springfield Headquarters Do-Jang on September 1980 with me. He was a great leader for youngsters through his teaching career as well as volunteer for whoever needs help and support.

    Carlos Schiavo (Dan Bon 34642) who was an excellent practitioner and was a role model for youngsters in Argentina. I have fond memories of training and personal time with him during his 5th Dan testing in Buenos Aires in 2014.

    These dedicated practitioners passed in 2015.  They will be remembered in the Moo Duk Kwan history as well as in our Vision Tour stories.  They were great contributors for the PVT II efforts and supporting our future young leaders.

    I am looking forward to your continuing participation in your Vision Tour and your support of our future leaders in 2016.

    Moo Duk Kwan Global Standardization Demonstration at 70th

    Moo Duk Kwan Global Standardization Demonstration at 70th

    Finally, I would like to recognize and celebrate the Moo Duk Kwan standardization worldwide. We had very little time to rehearse for the 70th Demonstrations and we also encountered some technical and administrative challenges during our preparations; however, all participants felt good about the demonstrations and received positive feed back from the audience,  especially from the other Martial arts practitioners who were in attendance.

    Moo Duk Kwan® standardization worldwide was the key element for the grand success of the 70th Demonstrations.  I am proud to be associated with this process.

    Thanks to the Founder’s teaching, his vision and the support of Moo Duk Kwan practitioners worldwide, the success of the 70th celebration was made possible.

    My family and I thank you and your family for the meaningful 2015.  We are looking forward the 2016 with your active participation.

    We trust you and your family had good holiday season and wish the best for the Happy New Year!

    Yours in Moo Duk Kwan,

    H. C. Hwang

Is Tang Soo Do The Same As Soo Bahk Do®?

Is Tang Soo Do The Same As Soo Bahk Do®?

Reading Time: 1


Tang Soo Do is not the same as Soo Bahk Do®.

The Tang Soo Do martial art system developed by Hwang Kee was an early precursor to his more advanced Soo Bahk Do® martial art system developed years later.

Moo Duk Kwan® martial art school Founder Hwang Kee taught an early iteration of his martial art system and philosophy under the name "Tang Soo Do."  Later he modified the contents of his system and coined the name "Soo Bahk Do®" to identify his unique martial art system and philosophy being taught in all authorized Moo Duk Kwan® martial art schools worldwide.  His Soo Bahk Do® martial art system encompassed the content and attributes of his previous Tang Soo Do martial art system and was expanded and enhanced to include a significant amount of new content.

The Soo Bahk Do® martial art system is a living art that continues to evolve under the guidance of the Moo Duk Kwan President, H.C. Hwang, Kwan Jang Nim.

The Moo Duk Kwan® martial art school's high standards for philosophical understanding, technical excellence and rigorous quality controls stand behind every Moo Duk Kwan® rank certification.


Charter Members

Charter Members

Reading Time: 2 minutes.

U.S. Tang Soo Do Moo Duk Kwan Federation PatchIn 1974-1976, before the United States Tang Soo Do Moo Duk Kwan Federation formation, Charter Members met, collaborated, conceived the U.S. Federation's primary objective for existence and created the legal structure which became our United States Federation.

Fed_Charter_Mem_Fist_Patch_300_DPI_Transparent_150x155Charter Members wear a special

Everyone featured here was named on the original copy of the Federation's formation documents as prepared for submission to the State of New Jersey on 03/05/1976. Each one's current status is noted for historical purposes.

Charter Members
United States Tang Soo Do Moo Duk Kwan Federation® 1976 to 1996
United States Soo Bahk Do Moo Duk Kwan Federation® 1996 to date

 Charter Member Name

Moo Duk Kwan®
Dan Bon

 Status  Date  ..                                                            
 H.C. Hwang, KJN 509  Active     Charter_Convention_3Pics
 Larry Seiberlich, SBN 1815  Active    
 Russ Hanke, SBN 4137  Active    
 Vic Martinov, SBN  10189  1936-2015    
 Robert Shipley, SBN 4825  Active    
 Ben Cortese, SBN  11689  Active    
 Frank Bonsignore, SBN  15805  Active    
 Jeff Moonitz, SBN  17650  Active    
 Arthur Pryor, SBN  16505  Resigned
 Andy Ah Po, SBN, CA  10187  Resigned
 Robert Beaudoin, CT 5661  1st Year  03/05/1976
 Lyn Stanwich, CT  1st Year  03/05/1976
 Chun Sik Kim, PA 2457  1st Year  03/05/1976
 Tchang-Bok Chung, NJ  12641  1st Year  03/05/1976
 Frank Trojanowicz, PA  13333  1st Year  03/05/1976
 Fred Kenyon, CA  14345  1st Year  03/05/1976
 Dennis Miller, SC  18430  1st Year  03/05/1976
 Robert Kingsley, NV 6044  1st Year  03/05/1976
 Ronald Savage, CT  15879  1st Year  03/05/1976
 James Lee, NJ  14317  1st Year  03/05/1976
 Joe Weeks, AK 3596  1st Year  03/05/1976
 Lyn Jackson, OH 3597  1st Year  03/05/1976

Moo Duk Kwan Dan members certified by Hwang Kee who attended the Charter Convention. Learn more at


H.C. Hwang Kwan Jang Nim Shares His PVT II Message For 2014 Appearances Worldwide

H.C. Hwang Kwan Jang Nim Shares His PVT II Message For 2014 Appearances Worldwide

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H.C. Hwang Kwan Jang Nim shares his PVT II message for 2014 appearances worldwide.

He has also prepared an online quiz that you can take to prepare for his visit here:

If your region does not have a PVT II appearance booked, contact your elected Board Director and let them know that you would like the Kwan Jang Nim to visit your region.

  • His scheduled appearances are posted here:
Seven Characteristics of a Moo Duk Kwan® Quality Soo Bahk Do® Practitioner

Seven Characteristics of a Moo Duk Kwan® Quality Soo Bahk Do® Practitioner

Reading Time: 4 minutes.

70th_Anniversary_Challenge_Chip_2_150x150What characteristics exemplify a Moo Duk Kwan® "quality practitioner"?

Certainly, producing practitioners with technical excellence is a proud distinction of the Moo Duk Kwan® and some may think of "quality" only in terms of technical performance, but there are so many other dimensions to becoming and being a Soo Bahk Do® practitioner, that viewing quality through only the narrow lens of technique is like trying to see all of our art through the peephole of a door.

The Kwan Jang Nim refers to "quality of practitioners" in his Vision Objectives as being one of the two most important outcomes of the Federation's activity. He goes on the define a quality practitioner as one who embodies and exemplifies our Moo Do values in their daily lives outside the dojang.


Charles Smith, Sa Bom Dan Bon 33141, R10 Elected Board Director, Lifetime Member

2009 Board Chairman, Charles Smith, Sa Bom Nim once requested a group of people to provide him with a one-word description of  how they perceived him.

His question prompted me to think about the NPVT work that supports and quantifies some attributes of Quality Practitioners as they correlate to the contextual meaning expressed in the President's Vision Objectives and the Five Moo Do Values.

What are characteristics (or qualities) that you associate with a quality student practitioner, instructor, leader and/or Federation official?

The following thoughts are what I have come up with so far. I invite you to contemplate how you would express what "makes" a Moo Duk Kwan® quality Soo Bahk Do® practitioner and distinguishes them from other practitioners.

Seven Characteristics of a Moo Duk Kwan® Quality Soo Bahk Do® Practitioner

  1. Strives to achieve the technical expectations of proficiency expressed by the Kwan Jang Nim and TAC for practitioners
    1. takes pride in achieving Gup Rank Testing expectations
    2. takes pride in achieving Dan Rank Testing expectations
    3. takes pride in achieving Ko Dan Ja Rank Testing expectations
    4. takes pride in meeting and fulfilling Instructor Certification expectations
    5. takes pride in meeting and fulfilling Studio Certification expectations
  2. Demonstrates and supports a high moral and ethical standard of personal conduct that is appropriate and proper for a martial artist
    1. conscientiously adheres to the Federation's membership code of conduct
    2. abides by the Federations Joint Board and TAC Administrative Policies
    3. respects and abides by the Federation's Policy of non-discrimination and harassment at all times
    4. understands and abides by the terms of the Certified Instructor Letter of Understanding
    5. avoids unethical conduct at all times
    6. avoids conflicts of interest
    7. avoids creating or allowing any circumstances that could jeopardize one's credibility or integrity as a martial artist representing  the Moo Duk Kwan® or the Soo Bahk Do® martial art system.
  3. Embraces and supports the spirit of the Founder's Mission 2000 Objectives
    1. seeks understanding and takes personal actions intent upon improve human relationships
    2. has a keen understanding of the concept and precepts of Moo
    3. demonstrates embodiment of Moo in one's daily life, ergo Moo Do
  4. Diligently displays key attributes of a martial artist as expressed by the Founder
    1. 8 Key Concepts
    2. courageous - possesses and exhibits the Yong Gi ~ brave energy necessary to speak up and/or standup for themselves, for others and for justice even in the face of adversity.
    3. 10 Articles of Faith on Mental Training
    4. self motivated - needs no external urging to take individual action
    5. composed - demonstrates Pyong Ahn ~ peaceful confidence and calm resoluteness, especially when confronted by adversity
    6. intent - demonstrates contemplation and thoughtfulness prior to speaking or taking action
    7. focused - demonstrates keen concentration ~ Chung Shin Tong Il before and while taking action
    8. * please post a COMMENT to add your characteristics or qualities to this incomplete list *
  5. Contemplates and embraces the essence of the Five Moo Do Values
    1. strives to exemplify the proper behavior of a true martial artist at all times
    2. conscientiously adheres to the Federation's membership code of conduct
    3. respects and abides by the Federation's Policy of non-discrimination and harassment at all times
  6. Comprehends and appreciates the intent of the President's Vision Objectives
    1. initiates personal actions that demonstrate Vision Participation
    2. initiates Random Acts of Moo Do
    3. actively embodies and applies mission objectives and vision objectives in one's daily life interactions with others
    4. engages in active advocacy of the Moo Duk Kwan® and the Soo Bahk Do® martial art system.
    5. seizes every opportunity to promote the public visibility of the Moo Duk Kwan® and the Soo Bahk Do® martial art system.
  7. Supports the Federation's initiatives to assure the long-term preservation of the Moo Duk Kwan® and the Soo Bahk Do® martial art system
      1. appreciates and embraces the Concept of Unity, community and purpose
      2. believes in acting for the common good of the community
      3. has read and understands the Federation's 501c4 Charter & Bylaws
      4. supports the Federation's 501c4 Chartered Purposes
      5. understands, appreciates and respects the Intellectual property shared by the Hwang family
      6. engages in active advocacy of the Moo Duk Kwan® and the Soo Bahk Do® martial art system

Think about the characteristics you observe in others, that you admire, aspire to, are inspired by, that motivate, etc. and help the NPVT in their work by contributing your perspective to this list of Seven Characteristics of a Moo Duk Kwan® Quality Soo Bahk Do® Practitioner.

You can post a comment on the page by using the COMMENT button at the bottom of the page and you can also help a friend add their thoughts by emailing them a link to this page or sharing the page on Facebook, etc.

Board of Directors 501c4

Board of Directors 501c4

Reading Time: 1

The 501(c)(4) non-profit United States Soo Bahk Do Moo Duk Kwan Federation® is managed by a Board of Directors comprised of 10 member elected directors and 5 appointed directors.

You can learn more about the structure of the Federation and the role and responsibilities of 501(c)(4) Board of Directors on the Federation wiki.

Paul Chiasson

Paul Chiasson serves as the Board representative elected by United States Soo Bahk Do Moo Duk Kwan Federation® members in ...
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Andrea Casselton

Andrea Casselton serves as the Board representative appointed by the Board Chairman for United States Soo Bahk Do Moo Duk ...
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Tim Bennett

Tim Bennett serves as the Board representative elected by United States Soo Bahk Do Moo Duk Kwan Federation® members in ...
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Paul Eng-wong

Paul Eng-wong serves as the Board representative elected by United States Soo Bahk Do Moo Duk Kwan Federation® members in ...
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Brandi DeLeeuw

Brandi DeLeeuw serves as the Board representative for United States Soo Bahk Do Moo Duk Kwan Federation® members in Region ...
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Andy Arvidson

Andy Arvidson

Andy Arvidson serves as the Board representative elected by United States Soo Bahk Do Moo Duk Kwan Federation® members in ...
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Craig Hays

Craig Hays serves as one of Kwan Jang Nim H.C. Hwang's appointed representatives on the Board of the United States ...
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Keith Wildonger

Keith Wildonger serves as the Board representative elected by United States Soo Bahk Do Moo Duk Kwan Federation® members in Region 3 ...
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Ron Strong

Ron Strong serves as the Board representative for United States Soo Bahk Do Moo Duk Kwan Federation® members in Region ...
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Rich Ahlers

Rich Ahlers serves as the Board representative elected by United States Soo Bahk Do Moo Duk Kwan Federation® members in ...
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George Broyles

George Broyles serves as the Board representative elected by United States Soo Bahk Do Moo Duk Kwan Federation® members in Region 4.  He ...
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Susan Fittanto

Susan Fittanto serves as the Board representative elected by United States Soo Bahk Do Moo Duk Kwan Federation® members in ...
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Daymon Kenyon

Daymon Kenyon serves as one of Kwan Jang Nim H.C. Hwang's appointed representatives on the Board of the United States ...
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John Johnson

John Johnson serves as one of Kwan Jang Nim H.C. Hwang's appointed representatives on the Board of the United States Soo ...
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Phillip Bartolacci

Phillip Bartolacci serves as one of Kwan Jang Nim H.C. Hwang's appointed representatives on the Board of the United States Soo ...
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The Haircut

The Haircut

Reading Time: 6 minutes.

It was 1992 and the Lubbock, Texas Community Center was beginning to empty as we showered and I finished quickly and waited in the lobby. The last two days had certainly been an experience. How else would you describe packing 14 people in a motorhome designed for eight and then heading 600 miles across West Texas with half a ton of bricks and boards to give a series of Demonstrations in multiple cities hundreds of miles apart in only two days? Officially, we were here to promote and unify Master Chu's remote schools, but it seemed that togetherness and cooperation were the real theme of this trip.

As I sat comfortably on a couch in the lobby, I remember seeing Master Chu coming out of the dressing room with a towel in one hand and his uniform in the other. Kris Poole and I noted that he looked somewhat tired and distracted, but we figured it was because of the tremendous amount of energy he had expended in his part of the demonstrations over the last few days. After all, jumping over four people and breaking six concrete blocks, sparring 2 people, doing several forms and numerous other board breaking feats three times today plus traveling three hundred miles and doing it all again could make anyone look tired. I thought no more about it.

It was about midnight when we arrived at the local Instructor's apartment where we were to spend the night. Everyone was exhausted and looked like walking zombies as we stumbled from the motorhome out onto the apartment complex parking lot. Master Chu called us into a circle and said he knew it would be crowded, but we should stay together and accept the Instructor's hospitality so we would not hurt his feelings. Last night in Abilene, Texas we had trouble finding places for 14 people to lie down at that instructor's home and tonight there was even less room in this apartment, but we were all willing to try. Everyone that is, except one Dan who insisted he would go to a hotel so there would be more room for those who wanted to stay.

Once more, Master Chu repeated his instructions and requested him to accept the inconvenience and stay with the group, but the Dan insisted he would go to the hotel and take a couple of people with him so it would be less crowded. We were all beginning to get uncomfortable because he was being requested, by his Instructor, to do something specific and he was absolutely refusing. He was our junior, but we said nothing to him thinking Master Chu could handle any discipline problem better than we. For the third time, Master Chu repeated his instructions and still the Dan insisted on departing. Master Chu just stood quietly as the Dan said his goodbyes and departed with three others who evidently decided comfort was more important than togetherness or did not understand what our Instructor was saying.

We were glad the tense situation was over and everyone started toward the apartment when Master Chu called Mr. Poole and I to return to the Motorhome with him.

We stepped up in the vehicle which had been our home for the past two days and sat across from our Instructor at the tiny table near the side window. He just sat silently, looking down at the tabletop for what seemed like an eternity until finally, he raised his head, and looked right through us with dark, tired eyes and in that instant, I had the strangest sensation I've ever experienced in my whole life. It felt as if he had already spoken a thousand words when he looked at us yet, the silence was broken by only one lonely question, which hung interminably in the night air.

  • "How long must I cut my own hair?"

We stared blankly, confused by his question. The silence screamed at us but we could not make out what it was saying and then the screams became respectfully silent as he spoke ". . . Earlier, when we finished the demonstration and everyone went to the showers, I had to get my own towel. In Korea, someone would have been waiting with my towel and clothes. Now, a junior Dan refuses to do as I ask and my senior students stand by and do not say a word . . ."

  • "How long must I cut my own hair?"

There was that question again, and with it the screaming started anew, but now it was beginning to become understandable. "Why had we not taken a more active role in assistance to our Instructor?" it shouted! Why could we not see our responsibility to help him in matters that need not command his personal attention? He was always there when we needed him, where were we when he needed us? How much had we actually helped him to spread our art's benefits to others? What real assistance had we been to him for all he had done for us? Without another word he disappeared out the door and into the darkness as we sat in awkward silence.


Master John Chu

Maybe somewhere in his being he already knew his death was approaching and maybe this whole trip was an attempt to bind us together to withstand his absence or maybe the years of teaching students who quit and the endless hours of sometimes seemingly thankless travel and dedication had just taken it's toll for him to choose this moment to make these remarks to us. Whatever the reason, we knew we had missed something very important that our teacher had tried to show us. For nearly ten years he had traveled hundreds of miles and conducted thousands of hours of classes. He had 16 schools and more than 600 students but apparently not even two senior students who could answer his question. How had this happened? Clearly, our responsibilities were more than we had realized. We had plenty to think about that sleepless night.

Not many months later, our Instructor was gone and we were left to ponder the question he posed that lonely night in West Texas.

The togetherness of that trip has been enjoyably replayed in our lives four times since then; multiple times in England at the Internationals, multiple times in Korea and multiple times at Ko Dan Ja Tests all over the country; however; I hope we do not ever cause the other part of that experience to be repeated.

The Founder has said that man is at his best when helping others and if we apply that concept to our training and the relationship we share with our Instructors we may better ourselves and come to understand togetherness, brotherhood, prevention of conflict and harmony in a way that few people ever have the opportunity to experience.

No one is an island and no one can carry the future of our art alone, it is up to the juniors to help and protect their seniors just as it is up to the seniors to help and protect their juniors. It is up to the juniors to learn the skills of our instructors and to emulate our instructor's tireless and unflagging pursuit of learning and of sharing our art. During  his life Founder Hwang Kee requested that we make the U.S. a worldwide leader in human relationships and that goal can only be achieved when everyone does their part by improving their own personal relationships.

Take care of your Instructor, don't leave them to do all the work. Learn all you can from them. Ask for opportunities to assume new and challenging leadership roles and in doing so demonstrate your appreciation of them by your example. Dans and Red belts especially, learn all your responsibilities; ask if you are unsure. Trying and making a mistake is better than doing nothing. All students, see if there are tasks or projects you can do for them to free their valuable time. We never know how long our Instructor will be with us and it would be a shame to have wasted any of their priceless time on menial tasks. Pitch in and be the best you can be, take on a project beneficial to your studio, help run a new student recruitment activity for your studio, take on a project for your class, attend a special event and contribute your own unique energy to it, work hard and always be loyal to your Instructor just as they are loyal to theirs'. Be a part of our "Living Art,"  be active and contribute to it's growth.

We may already owe the Founder and our Kwan Jang Nim several haircuts, but in the future, lets not give them cause to ask . . .

  • "How long must I cut my own hair?"

--Phil Duncan


P.S. Some current opportunities to contribute that you may not have thought about:

TAC Chairman Announces Regional Examiner Appointments

TAC Chairman Announces Regional Examiner Appointments

Reading Time: 1

Cash Cooper, Sa Bom Nim

The Technical Advisory Committee Chairman, Cash Cooper Sa Bom Nim, today announced Regional Examiner Appointments and their terms as shown below.

You can learn more about the important role and responsibilities of Regional Examiners on the wiki.

Some photos are pending upload.

2013 Appointed Regional Examiners



Region 1

P.J. Steyer Sa Bom                                                                             Expires 12/31/15

Term to begin when Board Director Term expires


Region 2

Denise Mullin-Menendez Sa Bom                                                    Expires: 12/31/15

Cort Stinehour Sa Bom                                                                      Expires: 12/31/15


Region 3

Gary Brown Sa Bom                                                                          Expires 12/31/15


Region 4

Rodrigo Cruz Master                                                                          Expires 12/31/16

Adam Diaz Master                                                                              Expires 12/31/16


Region 5

Michael Zickafoose Sa Bom                                                               Expires: 12/31/16

Christy Cooper Sa Bom                                                                      Expires: 12/31/16

Rich Grogan Sa Bom                                                                          Expires: 12/31/16


Region 6

Gene Riggs Sa Bom                                                                              Expires: 12/31/16

Bill Hockman Sa Bom                                                                        Expires: 12/31/16

Travis Guinn Sa Bom                                                                         Expires: 12/31/16


Region 7

Dave Billings Sa Bom                                                                         Expires: 12/31/14

Dan Ellenbecker Sa Bom                                                                   Expires: 12/31/14


Region 8

Oliver Whitcomb Sa Bom                                                                 Expires: 12/31/14

Brian Corrales Sa Bom                                                                      Expires: 12/31/14


Region 9

John Mahony Sa Bom                                                                       Expires: 12/31/14

Josh Duncan Sa Bom                                                                         Expires: 12/31/14


Region 10

Anna Oulashin Sa Bom                                                                     Expires: 12/31/14

U.S. Federation Provides The Best Value Training Experiences Anywhere

Reading Time: 1
Frank Bonsignore Ground Kicking

Frank Bonsignore Sa Bom Nim Ground Kicking

The U.S. Soo Bahk Do Moo Duk Kwan Federation's Instructors and Officials provides members with training opportunities and event experiences that are absolutely the highest value per dollar offered anywhere.

Today I received an email announcement from another martial art organization for their SINGLE DAY seminar that does NOT include food or lodging and it is $349.

Is the Moment With The Masters Weekend a good value at $393 for THREE DAYS of seminars INCLUDING all food and lodging?

Region 2's Guardians of the Art 2 full day of seminars scheduled for Nov 3 in Springfield, NJ are priced at the RIDICULOUSLY LOW PRICE OF $79 for the whole day.

Participating in the Guardians 2 Seminar series on Nov 3rd or the Moment With The Masters on Nov 9th will be the best and most economical investment you can make in your training in November and you will be helping Region 2 achieve its fundraising goal.

Signup for either today!

Soo Bahk Do Institute Provides Opportunity To Hone Highly Developed Skills

Soo Bahk Do Institute Provides Opportunity To Hone Highly Developed Skills

Reading Time: 2 minutes.

The Soo Bahk Do Institute provides video instruction with significant importance for the senior, high ranking, martial artist. As we become more skilled in any activity, we realize that all of the techniques and exercises are essentially the same – they only appear different to the novice.

At our level, we train to integrate the physical, mental and spiritual aspects of all of our martial arts repertoire, and then to apply them to our daily lives. This is the gift of the arts and the reward for our many years of training.

Because the martial arts are about “feeling”, a sensory activity, rather than thinking, it is based on an Action Philosophy – a committed approach to life. The magic isn’t in the technique, but is in each of us as we perform it. Each new technique and different technique that we learn provides us with a variation of how we integrate the martial arts in our performance and our lives.

Most great athletes will say that at first the performance seemed complex and often confusing, but the more they did it the simpler and easier it became, because they integrated it within the natural level of their performance. Learning, training and performing any activity should be natural and ultimately easy. We have worked toward that end.

The spirit or “intent” that a practitioner brings to their performance, is the key to the continual development of the most advanced martial artist. Performing any technique effortlessly and spontaneously is the ultimate goal, letting “intent” be the guide. Each new activity and situation is a test of the performer’s sophistication and total body/mind/spirit integration.

Provided in the Soo Bahk Do Institute videos, are many opportunities to apply and test your highly developed skills and your personal development in the arts.

Since I began training in the martial arts in 1958, I have experienced many variations of techniques and approaches to training. They all assisted me to become a successful martial artist, college athlete and most importantly, a successful person.

As an example, one of the videos available on the site is the Birdie Exercise. Students of various rank levels are shown participating at their individual level of skill and understanding. One of the students had not been previously involved in the activity and several others had for many years.

That’s the beauty of martial arts training.

The late Grand Master Hwang Kee, the Founder of Tang Soo Do / Soo Bahk Do Moo Duk Kwan, stated that we must continue our individual training which is the foundation of who we are as a true martial artist.

I invite all of my fellow “seniors” to take advantage of the material offered in the Soo Bahk Do Institute.

Larry Seiberlich
Sa Bom
Dan Bon 1815
Senior Advisory Committee Member

The Fire<br /><span style='font-family: arial, helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12pt; color: teal;'>By Phil Duncan</span>

The Fire
By Phil Duncan

Reading Time: 3 minutes.

What is it about a fire that draws us to it almost instinctively? We may not even be cold, yet we can't resist "backing up" to a nice warm fire. Is it just coincidence that we are so predictable when we are near one or could it be that we have an inborn sense that draws us to it? It seems that almost everyone is attracted to and responds the same way to a well tended and controlled fire. Perhaps this offers a unique insight into one aspect of our art.


Moo Duk Kwan Founder Passed Away 10 Years Ago

Moo Duk Kwan Founder Passed Away 10 Years Ago

Reading Time: 1

July 14th, 2012 marks 10 years since the passing of Hwang Kee, the Moo Duk Kwan's Founder, and perhaps this day is an opportunity for all who have been touched by his Moo Duk Kwan's influence to warmly reflect on the source of all that which Moo Duk Kwan practitioners enjoy.







Concept Of Unity
The United States Tang Soo Do Moo Duk Kwan Federation

Reading Time: 2 minutes.

1991_USTSDMDKF_Patch_840x825The United States Tang Soo Do Moo Duk Kwan Federation® Concept Of Unity (1975-1994)

The United States Soo Bahk Do Moo Duk Kwan Federation® Concept of Unity (1994 - To Date)

"The Federation's purpose is to prepare a home in the United States for a unified Moo Duk Kwan® assembly. It must earn the right and the privilege of having many Master's Dans and Gups, who study Soo Bahk Do®, as it's membership.

As a vehicle that promulgates the Korean Martial Art of Soo Bahk Do, it must keep developing the environment, atmosphere and respectability that will encourage many individuals to join in this unification effort and process.

The home that is being built must be a warm, comfortable and peaceful place that can be respected by all the Moo Duk Kwan stylists. It should have the ability to understand and serve each member's needs.

The present Federation members are the carpenters of this home. If the job is well done, tenants will surely move in and the Moo Duk Kwan assembly will finally have a home in the United States other than in their minds and hearts."

The Federation's Concept of Unity is read at the beginning of every meeting of the Board of Directors, but you may never have heard the story of its origin.  Click to hear Sa Bom Nim Larry Seiberlich, Dan Bon 1815 recount the creation process behind this cornerstone of the Federation.

Watch on the Soo Bahk Do Institute.


U.S. Federation Charter Members

Learn More:

Hu Kyun In

Reading Time: 1

Hu Kyun In on Wiki

Photos forthcoming

Senior Advisory Committee

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