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Sparring & Tournaments


At Greater Rochester Kuk Sool Won we practice several different types of sparring (beginning at Yellow Belt level for adults, Blue Belt for children).

We begin with sparring drills, and then advance to very light Kuk Sool Won-style tournament sparring (no-contact), open-style tournament sparring (light-contact), Korean rules sparring (continuous 3-minute rounds with moderate contact). We also teach grapple sparring (more of a self-defense training which teaches you to apply techniques in a fluid and changing manner), yudo sparring (consisting of sweeps and body throws) and martial arts sparring (a controlled freestyle sparring which allows striking, kicking, throwing, sweeps and grappling — this is restricted to Brown Belt level and above).

Tournaments & Competitions

Kuk Sool Won is not a tournament style art, although there is some tournament participation available to students who are interested. It is important to realize that traditional martial arts training is not a sport and, while some competition can be pursued on a limited basis, we do not limit our training to what will help you to score points in a tournament setting.

Competition is not a major aspect of Kuk Sool Won, although we do encourage participation in several official tournaments sponsored by the World Kuk Sool Association. These tournaments are geared specifically to allow students to complete in all areas of training — not just forms and sparring. In a Kuk Sool Won tournament students may compete in empty hand forms, weapons forms, sparring (with strict no-contact rules), techniques (appropriate to belt level), self-defense and breaking. After Black Belt level, additional categories of competition (such as demonstration techniques, knife-throwing and archery) are also often available.

Tournament Requirements for Promotion

Participation in at least one official World Kuk Sool Association tournament is required for promotion to the rank of Black Belt. Furthermore, Black Belt students must attend at least one WKSA tournament to be considered for promotion to the next rank of Black Belt.

Kuk Sool Won Great Lakes Tournament 2008

Kuk Sool Won students from Rochester, NY pose with Kuk Sa Nim and the Masters at the 2008 Great Lakes Tournament