This book is the first in a series regarding the martial art of Hwa Rang Do. This book is the foundation of this series, and includes concepts, theories, and historical information. This book also conatins Hwa Rang Do stances, striking techniques, kicking techniques, and applications. This book contains detailed photos of these techniques and applications.
Spotlight customer reviews:
Customer Rating: Summary: One of the first books I ever owned on the martial arts! Comment: Being the author of several books on the martial arts and fighting, I am always looking for books of exceptional quality to add to my library. If I have a book in my library, it's definitely worth owning. One such book is Joo Bang Lee's, "The Ancient Martial Art of Hwarang Do; Volume One." This volume along with its two companion volumes are the first books that I am aware of that were written on this Korean martial art.
This volume, like the other two in the series, starts out with an outstanding section that gives you a detailed look at the history of Hwarang Do and its progression over the centuries from ancient times to the present day. You are then presented with the theory and internal dynamics which make up this very impressive art. The basic principles of training sections were also very good and offered excellent advice that should be implemented during training. The following is a brief overview of each chapter in the book and what it contains.
1. Way of Controlling the Mind and Body:
a. This section includes a very detailed description on training methods you can use in order to learn how to breathe properly and to harness that breath into the body's epi-center or Dan Jun in order to develop your ki or internal energy. This is also known as chi in Chinese.
b. There is also a section included here that details various techniques and training methods you can use to enhance your mental concentration and development of your ki to enhance your physical and mental well being.
2. Basic Stances:
a. This section goes over the basic principles behind each stance or posture that is demonstrated. You are then shown 14 different stances that are used in this art form.
3. Falling Techniques:
a. In this section you are given the six basic principles that should be used during the execution of any type of roll or fall. You are then shown 3 falls, 2 rolls, and 3 flips that are used in this art form.
a. This section is rather brief to my liking, and focuses mainly on the various hand positions and types of strikes that are used in this art form. They range from classical punches to various open handed striking techniques including elbow strikes. There is a brief description provided on how to form your hand for each technique and also the preferred vital points that you should target with each particular strike.
5. Kicking Techniques:
a. This section although brief, is really well done. It starts off by explaining to you the basic principles involved in kicking correctly and how to breath correctly when kicking. It also gives a brief explanation into the different types of kicks. Very sound and solid information.
b. This is followed by a fairly good description of over 20 different kicks and their possible applications as well as the vital points that you would want to try and target when kicking. A rather brief example is then given of using multiple kicks on one or more opponents at one time.
c. This section finishes off with another brief section on specialty kicks, which focus on four different jumping and flying kicks.
6. Defensive Techniques:
a. This final section goes over the hard and soft blocks and parries that are incorporated in this art form. Demonstrations are given against an attack by both the hands and feet.
One of the things that I particularly liked about this book, and the others in the series, is the fact that there are no "sport" techniques in these books. All of the techniques shown are meant to be used in actual combat and self-defense situations. When you look at the art of Hwarang Do, you could make the comparison that this art form includes not only the strikes and kicks of Tae Kwon Do, but also the throwing and grappling techniques of Judo and the joint techniques of Aikido. Hwarang Do is truly a well-rounded and complete martial art.
This and its two companion volumes were some of the first books that I ever purchased years ago when I was in high school and starting to learn about the martial arts. These books give a very good overview on the art of Hwarang Do and are very informative. If you are interested in this art form, or any of the Korean arts, I would definitely put these books on your too buy list. Customer Rating: Summary: An Important Contribution to Korean Martial Arts Comment: Originally published in 1978 by Ohara and since reprinted privately by JL Publications (and thus somewhat harder to obtain), this is the first in a three volume series by Master Teacher Joo-Bang Lee. This first volume of three covers history, Theory, Stances, Falling, Striking/punching, Kicking, and blocking. Included is a complete catalog of techniques from basic to advanced. The sequences of photographs are particularely good, with four to nine clear photos per technique. Volume Two covers joint locks, throws, sweeps and counters, defense from disadvataged positions (sitting, etc). Volume Three covers throwing, defense against weapons, striking vital points, a few cane and baton techniques, choking, opponent control, and defense against more than one opponent.
Although there is some debate as to the historicity of Hwarang-Do as an "ancient" martial art separate from Hapkido and Taekwondo --Lee claims Hwarang Do has a completely separate native Korean origin despite its remarkable similarity to other forms of Korean martial art such as Hapkido and Kuk Sool-- this debate does nothing to detract from the technical expertise evident in the presentation of this book and the two which follow it. Author Lee Joo-Bang was at one time a direct (and senior) student of Hapkido founder Choi Yong-sul, and part of an original core group of dedicated martial arts men in Korea who traded techniques with one another in a progressive and friendly manner. Eventually due to competition these bonds of brotherhood dissolved, and today there is a lot of mystery and quarreling over what happened in those early days to cause so much dissention. A special attraction of this series of books is that most of the techniques are demonstrated by Master Joo-Bang Lee himself, and not younger students, the rare exception being a series of spectacular flying/jumping kicks shown by his eldest son, Henry Lee.
Among the few faults I can find with this series of books is the format of the book itself (not the actual layout). I believe Lee's work would benefit greatly by being reintroduced in a larger format, and certainly a reworking of the section on history could include a number of the photos from his collection and personal recollections of the "early years" which impacted so much on Korea's modern martial arts. Hwarang-Do is certainly worthy of a nice large, hardcover volume built to last. Then again, these paperback editions offer affordability and easy access to the general public. For that reason and for the quality and scope of technique presented, Lee's three volume collection is absolutely worthwhile including in any martial arts collection. Customer Rating: Summary: Great introduction to hwarang do from a great master Comment: This book was excellent, dojang nim joobang lee left out nothing that the beginning student wants to know. It was written in such a way that I felt like I am actually there with dojang nim joobang lee training. It has been a dream of mine to train in hwarang do since I was 8, and now at 23 I'm getting my chance.Of course no book should ideally substitute a actual human being in front of you instructing, but this is all I have because I live in cleveland, oh and there is not a single hwarang do school here. Lee joobang dojang nim, I give you a full salute and thank you for the knowledge you have shared with me and all the future hwarang warriors with this book. Customer Rating: Summary: Exellent pictures and description of this incredible art Comment: An excellent introduction to Hwa Rang Do, probably the most comprehensive martial art system in the world. The pictures and descriptions are clear and easy to follow.