A practical curriculum for practitioner-Teachers
The Founding Teachers of the School of the Way came from the following disciplines:
Muay Thai, Tae Kwon Do, Jiu Jitsu, Hapkido, Tai Chi, Bujinkan Budo Taijutsu, Kenpo, Tang Soo Do, respectively.
How do you integrate these vastly different disciplines—and why?
If you start with the “why?” it is very easy to understand the “how.”
Our Vision is that any group of Black Belts anywhere in the world can come together in the name of young people (who would not otherwise be able to afford it) to study the martial arts and learn its character-building lessons. With that intent we seek only the commonalities and give up our ego attachment to the differences and the idea that our native art is the “one great art.”
We are in many ways a “lab school” working out our ideas on how to achieve our goals. Our curriculum is not currently published outside of the School of the Way, though we intend for it to be within the next few years. Once initially published, it will be “Open Source,” meaning we will welcome constructive criticism and feedback from other Teachers and practitioners, that we may improve upon it.
Some of the martial tenets we seek to imbue in our students are:
-Stay out of situations where you might have to use what you know
-Stay on your feet
-Move in circles (being ready for multiple attackers)
-Stay grounded to the earth (no flashy aerial kicks)
-If you must go to the ground, do so only in order to ground the opponent and then get up immediately. There may be others and you don’t want to be in a wrestling match while your opponent’s buddy kicks a field goal with your head
-The most dangerous weapon is an empty hand. We do not teach the use of weapons, though we do teach students how to disarm armed opponents.
-Open-handed techniques (ear claps, palm strikes, spear-hands to the eyes, etc.) are for experts, not for young children (as you see in many Kata taught to children). We reserve teaching these techniques for mature students who can be trusted with this knowledge.
-If given the opportunity…put the opponent at a choice point before ratcheting up the severity of the techniques
-Use only the technique necessary to accomplish the task of regaining control of the situation. Though you may know how, you are not justified in killing someone just because they attacked you. That’s still murder and you are likely to go to jail for it.
-Once you have control of the situation, be compassionate to the opponent
-Always use your words before, during and after an altercation; anything is possible in conversation.