Classes are formal, encouraging dedication to regular practice and engaged intent, which are vital to the practice.
The art itself is very circular and flowing. Students must learn to develop speed and accuracy in harmony with the timed release of power. Sophisticated means of power-generation keep the art challenging as each new level brings refinements and means to the same ends.
Beginners focus on learning to adopt deep stances, built on the principles of developing strength and enhanced connection to the tan-jan. This technique is one of opening joints to their maximum range of motion and holding them open forever longer periods of time. Harmonized muscular development is a primary goal in Kuk Sul and much attention is paid to safe, facilitating warm-ups. Total body conditioning and strength is required to progress.
Intermediate students move on to a variety of forms and drills (solo or partner). Progress is slow and always routed in the gradual expansion of application of the basic techniques. The art prides itself on efficiency and effectiveness, both in self-defense and in developing health.
The most striking thing about Kuk Sul is the means of generating power and the tactics for employing that power effectively. Hyung (forms) are taught as a learning tool rather than simulated fights. Kuk Sul practitioners will use low stances in order to develop strong legs for kicking and jumping. A unique feature of Kuk Sul hyung training is that stances are quite narrow. While this is unusual for a hard style (such styles often rely on a wider, more solid, stance), it does prepare the students better for the circular motion of the Yu Sool soft style. Narrow stances also teach the importance of good balance right from the start. More importantly, the practitioner of Kuk Sul will not be hampered at any stage of training by trying to perform circular techniques from a stance that is too wide to allow for quick turns.
Overall, our classes are designed to help the practitioner absorb the art at a pace which is comfortable and fundamentally correct.