Author Archives: ACalvert

About ACalvert

I am a husband, father, military chaplain, a martial artist, wood worker, and coffee fiend, but most of all I am a devoted follower of Christ Jesus our Lord. My greatest desire is to worship God in whatever role I’m in and to make disciples.

Soar TSD Training, Week of 18 Nov.

Tang Soo! Here is your workout plan for the week in conjunction with what we are training in class.

Soo Ki (Hands) techniques are great for close quarters self-defense and show up in all of our Hyungs (forms). Why?  Because Tang Soo Do practitioners must be able to change the distances from long range to intermediate to close to grabbing distances. The challenge in hand techniques is to change the angle. Use your defense hand techniques to move around your opponent to change the angle of attack. This gives you the advantage while placing the opponent at the disadvantage. These are key to working the Looping Drill this week.

The Soar Weekly Challenge

Complete 50 air-squats and 50 Russian Twists every day this week. For the air-squats, be sure to keep you shoulders over your hips for every repetition. If you bend over, that repetition does not count. For the Russian Twists, keep your feet off the ground balancing on your back-side. You may break this challenge up into as many sets as you need throughout the day. However, these are in addition to your workout – not in place of. Go for it!

Report on how your workouts are going in the comments below. What are you doing? Let’s encourage one another.

Meditation for the Week

Respect* and Obedience – Jesus said, “So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets” (Matthew 7:12). This verse is more widely known as the Golden Rule. Respect is a virtue celebrated in every culture; it is often placed alongside Honor. William Lyon Phelps illustrated respect in this manner, “This is the final test of a gentleman; his respect for those who can be of no possible service to him.” Being a person of respect is your responsibility and not the responsibility of the person you are showing respect to.

Attitude Requirements to Master Tang Soo Do

1. Purpose of training should be the enhancement of mental and physical betterment.
2. Serious Approach.
3. All out effort.
4. Maintain regular and constant practice.
5. Practice basic techniques all the time.
Anything built needs a solid foundation. Basic techniques establish the foundation for Tang Soo Do. What are the basics of life? Consistently practicing the godly basics of life build a character that reflects Christ’s character.
6. Regularly spaced practice sessions.
7. Always listen to and follow the directions of instructors or seniors.
8. Do not be overly ambitious.
9. Frequently inspect your own achievements.
10. Always follow a routine and training schedule.
11. Repeatedly practice all techniques already learned.
12. When you learn new techniques, learn thoroughly the theory and philosophy as well.
13. When you begin to feel idle, try to overcome this.
14. Cleanliness is required after training. Keep yourself and your surroundings clean.

13 Hyung Interpretation Principles

5. Work with the adrenaline rush, not against it. The human body responds to all types of stress in a variety of ways. This is also known as the “fight or flight” response triggering a cascade of stress hormones that produce well-orchestrated physiological changes. The heart rate increases moving the hormones and a greater volume of oxygen throughout the body, breathing becomes more rapid and possibly deeper, and muscles tense with potential energy ready to be converted into kinetic energy. These changes, originating in the amygdala and hypothalamus, happen well in advance of awareness. The design of the nervous system is so efficient that the amygdala and hypothalamus begin working even before the eyes have had a chance to fully process what is happening. This is why people, before they think about what they are doing, are able to rapidly move out of a dangerous path of approach or exert atypical strength for a short period of time. The same effects are also happening to the opponents, and both will suffer from reduced fine motor skills. Therefore, applications need to be straightforward and simple to execute while incapacitating the opponent. The more complicated the application is the more the practitioner must drill and practice. 

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Soar TSD Training, Week of 11 Nov.

Tang Soo! Here is your workout plan for the week in conjunction with what we are training in class.

No official Class on Monday, 11 Nov, due to Veteran’s Day.
See you Thursday. Train Hard!

Jok Ki (Kicking) is what Korean martial arts are known for. Kicks should be dynamic, quick, and effortless. This takes a great deal of practice. All our kicks are built off of the 5 basic kicking techniques: Front, Side, Turning, Back, and Crescent kicks. To challenge yourself, practice these kicks from Hu Kul Ja Seh, Chun Kul Ja Seh, and Kee Ma Ja Seh. To build power begin each basic kick with one air-squat from your chosen stance. Additionally, multiple kicks in sequence are a must. Practice consecutive kicking (multiple kicks with the same leg) and your combination kicking (multiple kicks with both legs). Don’t forget to move and change the angle of attack. You are always looking to increase your advantage and decrease your opponents. 

The Soar Weekly Challenge

Complete 50 air-squats and 50 Russian Twists every day this week. For the air-squats, be sure to keep you shoulders over your hips for every repetition. If you bend over, that repetition does not count. For the Russian Twists, keep your feet off the ground balancing on your back-side. You may break this challenge up into as many sets as you need throughout the day. However, these are in addition to your workout – not in place of. Go for it!

The Russian Twist

Your DAREBEE additions this week will be Defcon-1 and The Takedown. Defcon-1 has great static holds to build major muscle groups. The Takedown works on explosive agility. The full Takedown is 7 rounds changing the kick on each round. Round one is Side Kicks, Round two is Front Kicks, Etc. (see the PDF). Do one three times this week and the other twice this week – your choice. 

Report on how your workouts are going in the comments below. Let’s encourage one another.

Meditation for the Week

Perseverance – Perseverance means we don’t give up. We don’t stop. We keep placing one foot in front of another. We finish the race laid before us. We continue the journey … even when you face the difficult and seemingly insurmountable challenges. The Bible tells us to “not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up” (Galatians 6:9). Henri Nouwen observed, “in the middle of the pain there is some hidden gift. I, more and more in my life, have discovered that the gifts of life are often hidden in the places that hurt most” (Henri Nouwen and Soul Care by Wil Hernandez). Perseverance finds its greatest effect in the crucibles of life when God allows and perhaps organizes such challenges to refine, shape, and polish us for His glory. Persevere! And remember the promise found in James 1:25, “the one who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing.”

Attitude Requirements to Master Tang Soo Do

1. Purpose of training should be the enhancement of mental and physical betterment.
2. Serious Approach.
3. All out effort.
4. Maintain regular and constant practice.
Consistency is key. Consistency is necessary for every aspect of our lives whether its martial arts, academics, or learning a language. Create the routine to build the muscle memory.

5. Practice basic techniques all the time.
6. Regularly spaced practice sessions.
7. Always listen to and follow the directions of instructors or seniors.
8. Do not be overly ambitious.
9. Frequently inspect your own achievements.
10. Always follow a routine and training schedule.
11. Repeatedly practice all techniques already learned.
12. When you learn new techniques, learn thoroughly the theory and philosophy as well.
13. When you begin to feel idle, try to overcome this.
14. Cleanliness is required after training. Keep yourself and your surroundings clean.

13 Hyung Interpretation Principles

4. Nerve strikes are extra credit. Dim Mak has a place in Tang Soo Do, and knowing the vital points for nerve strikes is extremely useful. Beware, they do not work on everyone. The effectiveness of a nerve strike depends greatly on the mental condition and health of an individual. The Tang Soo Do practitioner should never rely solely on a nerve strike attack against a determined opponent, but rather consider them extra credit in combination with other soft or hard tissue attacks.

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Soar TSD Training, Week of 4 Nov

Tang Soo! Here is your workout plan for the week in conjunction with what we are training in class.

Hyungs (forms) are the textbooks of the art of Tang Soo Do. Concentrate your efforts on learning the nuances, the balance points, the turns, the heights of the defenses and attacks, and where the proper places are to breathe within your hyungs. Remain aware of your stomach and control those muscles. If the stance is a Hu Kul Jah Se, be sure the feet are facing the correct directions and your weight is settled in the back leg. If you are required to punch, be sure it’s at the correct height. Sang Dan Kong Kyuck is at the nose (Ko); Choong Dan Kong Kyuck is at the solar plexus (Myung Chi). Outside of class, complete each of your forms at least five times. Practice them slowly to understand where you generate power (Hint: it starts in your stances).

The Soar Challenge

I give you the same challenge as last week because it was hard. Complete 50 push-ups, 50 Sit-ups, and 50 Burpees every day this week. You may break this challenge up into as many sets as you need throughout the day. However, these are in addition to your workout – not in place of. Go for it!

Your DAREBEE additions this week will be Sherlock and The Takedown. Sherlock places a heavy emphasis on the legs – the foundation. This is great for Hyung week. The Takedown works on explosive agility. The full Takedown is 7 rounds changing the kick on each round. Round one is Side Kicks, Round two is Front Kicks, Etc. (see the PDF). Do one three times this week and the other twice this week – your choice. Report on how your workouts are going in the comments below. Let’s encourage one another.

Meditation for the Week

Concentration – Concentration is a lot of attention, thought, and focus directed to an activity or subject. This week’s meditation is concentration. In Tang Soo Do, it takes a great deal of concentration or focus to practice consistently, to try your best on every technique, and to receive correction. To be an expert in Tang Soo Do, you have to be able to concentrate keeping constant awareness of every tiny muscle in your body. The godly life also takes consistent concentration so that your life will glorify God. Deuteronomy 6 tells us how we practice this type of concentration.

4 “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. 5 You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. 6 And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. 7 You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. (Deuteronomy 6:4–7)

Attitude Requirements to Master Tang Soo Do

1. Purpose of training should be the enhancement of mental and physical betterment.
2. Serious Approach.
3. All out effort.
This is not just working hard for the sake of working hard. You must use your brain. Give all you effort in a smart way. Do the job, chore, or task completely and correctly. This is about character.
4. Maintain regular and constant practice.
5. Practice basic techniques all the time.
6. Regularly spaced practice sessions.
7. Always listen to and follow the directions of instructors or seniors.
8. Do not be overly ambitious.
9. Frequently inspect your own achievements.
10. Always follow a routine and truing schedule.
11. Repeatedly practice all techniques already learned.
12. When you learn new techniques, learn thoroughly the theory and philosophy as well.
13. When you begin to feel idle, try to overcome this.
14. Cleanliness is required after training. Keep yourself and your surroundings clean.

13 Hyung Interpretation Principles

3. Strike to disrupt; disrupt to strike. In a fight, the attacker is rarely going to stand in place like a punching bag or leave his arm dangling in mid-air to allow the practitioner unopposed application of his martial prowess. The martial artist needs to strike to disrupt the opponent’s balance and center of gravity or disrupt the balance to deliver a solid strike. In his life’s work, The Book of Five Rings, Miyamoto Musashi said, “whether fighting an enemy armed or unarmed, keep him on the defensive. Chase the enemy with your body and your spirit. This is excellent strategy. …By constantly creating difficulties for the enemy, you will force him to deal with more than one thing, giving you the advantage.” The Yu Dan Ja must develop the ability to simultaneously attack the feet, ankles, knees, head, wrists and/or elbows just to disrupt the opponent so as to strike the vital core of the body. To accomplish this principle, the practitioner has a necessity to understand how the component parts of the hyung work and how they might be combined simultaneously and in sequence. Practicing a hyung one hundred times in order to perform the shape of it is insufficient to gain the depth of understanding this principle and the previous one requires. 

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Soar TSD Training, Week 28 Oct

Alright Warriors, this week is where we start making some changes in the training plan. For the last few weeks, I have attached the class training plan for you to follow on your own. Now, I will add a suggested workout plan in conjunction with what we are training in class.

Ho Sin Sul (self-defense) in the flavor of the week. Be sure to spend a little extra time loosening up the shoulder, elbow, and wrist joints. Be aware of where your center of gravity is located and how you are able to disrupt your opponent’s center of gravity. Do not be afraid to close the distance. When manipulating joints and body weight, you want to be as close to your opponent as possible.

The Soar Challenge

I challenge you to complete 50 push-ups, 50 Sit-ups, and 50 Burpees every day this week. You may break this challenge up into as many sets as you need throughout the day. However, these are in addition to your workout – not in place of. 🤨 Go for it! If you are able to complete each exercise in one go, you get extra credit. Leave a comment on your progress through the week.

darebee.com

I also offer a new workout plan for this week available in the workout plan download above. The Apollo and Rocket Fuel workouts from Darebee.com. This is a great resource website I’ve used for years. Let’s challenge one another to higher levels of fitness. You are welcome to add runs as an active rest in between rounds. For the Apollo workout, you can substitute another split squat for the shrimp squat if needed. Rocket Fuel is timed. It’s only three minutes of work before you rest, so no resting in between exercises. Let me and everyone else know how your workouts are going in the comments below. Let’s encourage one another.

Attitude Requirements to Master Tang Soo Do

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1. Purpose of training should be the enhancement of mental and physical betterment.
2. Serious Approach.

Tang Soo Do is a Martial application as well as a whole person development system. The martial application carries risk, so a serious apporach in necessary to keep our training partners and ourselves safe while we practice and learn.
3. All out effort.
4. Maintain regular and constant practice.
5. Practice basic techniques all the time.
6. Regularly spaced practice sessions.
7. Always listen to and follow the directions of instructors or seniors.
8. Do not be overly ambitious.
9. Frequently inspect your own achievements.
10. Always follow a routine and truing schedule.
11. Repeatedly practice all techniques already learned.
12. When you learn new techniques, learn thoroughly the theory and philosophy as well.
13. When you begin to feel idle, try to overcome this.
14. Cleanliness is required after training. Keep yourself and your surroundings clean.

13 Hyung Interpretation Principles

2. Every technique should be able to end the fight immediately. Technique is made up of three parts: timing, distance, and target. The loss of any one of these parts is the loss of tactical and strategic advantage—the loss of the art in application. Every movement in a hyung should be able to cause serious bodily harm to an assailant in the minimal time necessary to execute the technique including “blocks.” In real life self-defense and combat, the practitioner does not have time to feel out his opponent. Hyungs “were developed before the advent of modern medicine, which cures injuries that would have been fatal a century ago. …the ancient masters designed every offensive technique and most defensive ones to immediately end the fight” (Kane and Wilder). This is why the WTSDA requires an attitude and character with a “serious approach,” the willingness to repeatedly “practice basic techniques all the time,” and to “learn thoroughly the theory and philosophy” behind the technique all while humbly guarding against becoming “overly ambitious.” the practitioner must never forget Tang Soo Do is an art of martial (appropriate to war) application. What are your thought?

Meditation for the Week

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Integrity – Righteousness guards him whose way is blameless, but sin overthrows the wicked (Proverbs 13:6).  The Greek words alētheia and alēthes are translated as “integrity” in the New Testament and mean “truth or the state of being true.” Jesus is referred to as a man of integrity because He lived wholly in accordance with God’s complete truth. In Mark 12:14, the Gospel writer records,  “They came to him and said, ‘Teacher, we know you are a man of integrity. You aren’t swayed by men, because you pay no attention to who they are; but you teach the way of God in accordance with the truth.’”
A person of moral integrity is the same in the dark as in the light
— not double-minded with contradictory thoughts, words and actions.
— not pretending to have virtues or qualities that are really not present in the heart (hypocrisy) (Matthew 23:28)
— not focusing on temporal gain but on growing in godly character (Psalm 15)
A person of moral integrity is one who …
— does what is righteous speaking the truth in love
— does not falsely accuse another or harm a neighbor
— does not gossip, but keeps his or her word
— despises evil men and honors those who love the Lord
.  To have moral integrity is to be undivided and consistent in your mind, will, and emotions regarding what is right and wrong. To be consistent though, you, must align yourself to the unwavering character of God.

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For Thursday: 24 Oct

Hey Soar TSD Warriors,

This Thursday will be a special day. Master Bailey, from Fire Dragon Karate, will be present in class to promote me to Sam Dan, 3rd Degree Black Belt. I hope you all are able to attend and celebrate this time with me. All of your participation has made it possible for me to attain this honor. Thank you. I will provide homemade cookies for the celebration.

Additionally, we will promote another one of our students who was unable to test at the last group test. She completed here requirements this past Monday. I will also be handing off the leadership of Soar Tang Soo Do at Fort Hood to Mrs. Meshell McConnell who will lead the club until I return from deployment next summer.

You all have been such an amazing blessing to me over the last year and a half. I can’t thank you enough for how wonderful y’all have been to me.

Very Grateful,
Mr. Andrew Calvert

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Soar TSD Training 21/24 Oct

It’s Soo Ki (Hands) training week! Let’s look at hand techniques in offense and defense (attack and counter-attack) along with our Il Soo Sik Soo Ki (Hands One-Steps)

For class and individual training please use this week’s guide.

Meditation for the Week

In Fighting Choose with Sense and Honor – Remember last week’s meditation? I talked about battle. What is the difference between “battle” and “fighting”? A Battle is a confrontation you did not agree to; it’s non-consensual, or something you would prefer not to engage. A “fight” is a consensual conflict like sparring or debate. The challenge is to maintain your self-control, humility, and respect during the “fight” – that’s fighting with sense and honor. As Paul instructed Timothy, “Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called and about which you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses” (1 Timothy 6:12). You should be proud of your actions and reactions after the fact. Paul continued his exhortation to Timothy by saying, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith” (2 Timothy 4:7). Paul was content with the manner in which he lived, and at those points he was not, Paul rested in the Grace of Christ. There is a large bit of overlap between our fourth and fifth codes of Tang Soo Do, still I want you to understand the differences. Each of you will be forced into a variety of conflicts, either battles or fights, therefore you must decide now and practice how you will respond and engage. You will do without think that which you practice.

Attitude Requirements to Master Tang Soo Do

image001

1. Purpose of training should be the enhancement of mental and physical betterment.
How are your enhancing yourself through Tang soo Do training? What are you learning physically, mentally, spiritually, and socially?
2. Serious Approach.
3. All out effort.
4. Maintain regular and constant practice.
5. Practice basic techniques all the time.
6. Regularly spaced practice sessions.
7. Always listen to and follow the directions of instructors or seniors.
8. Do not be overly ambitious.
9. Frequently inspect your own achievements.
10. Always follow a routine and truing schedule.
11. Repeatedly practice all techniques already learned.
12. When you learn new techniques, learn thoroughly the theory and philosophy as well.
13. When you begin to feel idle, try to overcome this.
14. Cleanliness is required after training. Keep yourself and your surroundings clean.

13 Hyung Interpretation Principles

1. There is more than one proper interpretation of any movement.
“Do” in Tang Soo Do means “way or art.” Tang Soo Do is an art of body movement and mechanics. It is organic. The actual combat application derived from the hyung transcends the artificial construction of the form as a training tool. It becomes error to say there is only one sound application of a specific tactic found in a hyung. To limit the practitioner to a single application for a single movement within the hyung limits the growth of the student just as much as it limits the art itself. The practitioner is free to be creative with elements of the hyung, and creativity finds its fullness within a community of martial artists because of the variety of physical characteristics, body types, and mental and emotional approaches to combat. What works well for one person (i.e. the 215-pound semi-pro male athlete) may not work well for another student attempting to apply the interpretation in the same way (i.e. the 125-pound female teenager). On the other hand, the serendipitous discovery of a new interpretation and application might work even better than what was developed individually. This first principle requires an open mind.

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