Martial Arts Philosophy

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  • Self Discipline
  • Self Confidence
  • Self Defense
  • Honor
  • Respect
  • Loyalty
  • Mental Toughness
  • Get Fit, Stay Fit
  • Keep Learning
  • Keep Training
  • Know what's Practical
  • Know what's Sport


Discipline is the heart of all Martial Arts!  It is lacking in many of us today. We are over indulged and often look for convenient alternatives or temporary solutions for every obstacle that come along, and if it cannot be found, we quit!  Quitting has become so accepted that even a six year old has it in his vocabulary.  Too often, parents indulge the child, and allows the child to quit, instead of seeing to it, that the child completes the task.
It is the easy way out for the short term but, this sets the pattern for both parent and child.  Parents frequently tell me their child gets into an activity with enthusiasm, only to lose interest later and quit.  What many parents fail to see is their contribution to it, that they allow it to happen!  A child that is taught to follow through with his commitment, may have a completely different attitude, by the time it is completed, and may even wish to go further.  To be responsible for our decisions with the right attitude, is vital for both parent and child!

Self Discipline: Most successful people and athletes get where they are with strict disciplined training and attitude. Natural talent and luck can only take you so far. The rest is self-discipline and hard work.   Ask any successful person and they will tell you it is all about timing, not giving up and with a little bit of luck!

Self Confidence: Fitness is the common denominator of basic military training in all branches of the armed forces, as it is, at Ooi's Taekwondo.  We can guarantee it, as long as you are willing to follow our training program.  We will help you build strength & stamina, which allows you to train harder and more efficiently.  Self Confidence and Self Esteem, is an inevitable by product! 

Self Defense: If you had to defend yourself, would you really know how?   We believe, it is your duty and obligation, to learn to defend yourselfagainst an unarmed assault!  It is your right to be safe!  We do not guarantee, that by training you will be able to defend yourself but we can guarantee that without it, you will not know how, even if you wanted to.  Ooi's Taekwondo will give you the "weapons" needed to protect yourself, but will not give you false illusions that you are a fighting machine.  We will in no way or manner give you the illusion that just because you train, you will be able to defend yourself. Fighting back is always a strong deterrent, especially when you put up a credible resistance!  However, you need to have the right mental attitude and training to fight back!  You have to accept and expect that you are going to get hurt..., I do!  This way you will at least be mentally prepared to fight back after the initial "first strike" has been launched against you.  If you are able to fall back on your training, it is mostly damage control!   Remember though, that Avoidance, should always be in the first line of defense!   Remember the 3 "A"s: Be Aware, stay Alert, and always Avoid.

Honor: It commands respect and trust. Without it, all victory is hollow, all pledges are empty! 

Respect: For self and others.   The world would be a more peaceful place!  

Loyalty: To your System, your Instructor, Seniors, Peers and Juniors. It builds espirt de corps, neccessary to keeping a high standard of training and pride in what we do, and represent.  
Get Fit, Stay Fit: Proper Martial Arts training covers all aspects to Getting and Staying Fit. It develops Strength, Power, Speed, Balance, Coordination, Flexibility, Focus. Once developed, all these skills will contribute to Staying Fit and having a higher quality of life.

Keep Learning No one martial art is complete, it is our duty to keep learning! However we must be careful not to be wanting to "learn" so many different systems that we are good at none. Whatever your discipline, know your own system truly well! When you do, you will be able to know, what technics work and what don't. It is always important to develop good basics as it will always be the building blocks for advanced technics. At Ooi's Taekwondo, our main system is in Taekwondo/TangSooDo..., and we excel at it.

Keep Training: To mantain the progress you've made and to reach even higher ground.

Know what's Practical: Make sure you know how to apply what you've learnt, and not just in theory! In Sports, rules apply and critical targets may be prohibited. The defense of some vulnerable targets are sometimes compromised as they are illegal to attack, but in the context of self defense, these are the very targets, that are most likely to be hit. The difference between Combat and Sports is, you may have to bury the one that come in second! One of the best things about sports, is the natural evolution of new techniques that emerges in the quest for new and more ways to win.   So many new applications and modifications in techniques, have evolved in the last two decades, that has made Taekwondo(WTF) quite distinct.

Know what's Sport: Sport Taekwondo can be both spectacular and disappointing, to watch. The agility of the fighters are something to marvel, but at the same time, it can be very sloppy. Punches to the face are disallowed, which inevitably leads to hands being dropped and not covering the face. Also with the wearing of body protectors, fighters often counter kick for kick and not bother to block but cover, to prevent a point being scored.

Sparring and Contact in the Martial Arts: We have to realize first and foremost that we are a contact sport!  Safety therefore, is of the utmost importance and all precautions are taken to ensure the safety and well being of all our members.  At Ooi's Taekwondo, we have four stages of sparring; non contact, semi contact, medium contact, and full contact.  The majority of our members are in the semi contact division.

Non contact: Strictly no contact, for beginners and young children.  Develops confidence, coordination, balance, timing, footwork

Semi contact: After about 3-6 months, the students are put up usually with a higher rank who is able to control the sparring and coach the student.  Develops greater confidence, aim and focus, understands importance of control and builds confidence.

Medium contact: Our adult classes are mostly medium contact which means punches and kicks launched almost at top speed.  The intent is not to injure each other but shots are fired hard enough that the protectors come in really useful.  Reflexes and reaction time are honed, timing and spatial skills developed.

Full Contact:  In all honesty, we cannot truly claim to be full contact since everyone gets to go home after training every nite.., and in one piece!

Reality Based Personal Protection Training:

It is an undeniable fact that many who train in the martial arts today, are not prepared for the threats that exist.  This is because of a whole bunch of reasons.  The most unforgivable reason would be, poorly skilled and inexperienced (in life threatening situations) instructors who are running martial arts schools, for the main purpose of making money.  I am saddened by the wholesale commercialization of the martial arts that are offering students the ability to defend themselves with very unrealistic training and lots of catch phrases.  That is why I have looked into "Reality Based" training.  Here too, we have systems and instructors that claim expertise in self defense, so it is up to me to research, meet and experience the training offered by these experts and determine the validity of their system.

In October 2006, Ooi's Taekwondo hosted Jim Wagner's Seminar.  Mr. Wagner lays claim to very impressive credentials with a lot of real world experience.  I am also certified as an Instructor for Reality Based Protection.  There has been some controversy to Mr. Wagner's credentials and it is up to each individual to research and make their own decisions.  As far as I am concerned, I learnt something from Mr. Wagner's Seminar and that's all that matters.

In 2007, I met a very dedicated martial artist, Sifu McInnes who is based in Thailand.  Sifu McInnes is the Chief Instructor of the International School of Martial Arts and President of the World Kumite Organisation.  Sifu McInnes is very a dedicated martial artist who has gained momentum with his WKO, especially with practitioners of Kyokushinkai and it's various off shoots.  Osu!

MMA or Mixed Martial Arts.  The buzz word of the decade in the martial arts world.  Undoubtedly, it has shaken the martial world and a new crop of pratictioners have arisen.  The best thing MMA has done for the Martial Arts is it has brought back some respectability.  From the mid 1970's to late 1990's