HAPKIDO is a traditional form of Korean martial arts. It is known as an “Um/Yang” style (hard/soft) because it encompasses both the striking and kicking techniques familiar to many martial arts as well as the grappling and joint-locking skills found in others. The Seonsul (“Sun-sool”) method of Hapkido training was developed by Master Jon Morey in 2003 after more than 15 years of training and study. Upon earning a 5th degree black belt in the Sun Moo Kwan style of Hapkido, Master Morey worked hard to make the 3,864 techniques of the system more closely reflect modern practices and applications. His background in the security industry and experiences with real world, non-sport violence taught him that many of the Hapkido skills were essentially useless for practical use.
Master Morey, and several high ranking black belt practitioners such as Junior Master Erik Taipalus and Instructor Erik Fourie, began to apply a simple rule to the thousands of skills they had learned; if they had not personally used the skill effectively in real life it went to the end of the queue for instruction! This exhaustive method left about 360 lessons (roughly 10%) of primary importance for training new students. These skills are universal and applicable to all ages and genders, and form the basis of fundamental skills common to almost ALL martial arts styles and systems!
It will usually takes a new practitioner about two years to earn a black belt (demonstrating a thorough knowledge of the core 360 lessons and passing certain benchmarks of physical competence) and then up to several further decades can be spent learning the more esoteric and less practical martial arts skills found in the Hapkido Sun Moo Kwan. The Seonsul black belt may also wish to take his or her base knowledge and expand a certain aspect of the training such as taking the Closed Range (ground) skills and building upon them with Brazilian jiu-jitsu (such as Seonsul black belt and MMA fighter Robert Bisgeier).
Seonsul means “the Middle Way” and reflects the method’s aim of avoiding extremes in training. Martial arts training taken from “Strip mall” or “traditional” karate or TangSooDo/Taekwondo schools is next to useless for practical self-protection and not everyone has the ability or desire to train as a full contact MMA fighter (a very specific skill set in any case). Seonsul training focuses on the striking and grappling aptitudes that all humans have naturally… combined with the Movnat™ system or as a stand alone practice, the Seonsul method is your key to the fitness, self-confidence, and character discipline found in real martial arts training!