Our patterns are generally known as the Ch’ang Hon patterns as originally taught in Korea. They represent the history of Korea from legend until now. The patterns are named after significant legends, historical events, places and peoples.
Patterns represent the encyclopaedia of the Art but where a printed encyclopaedia uses the written word, patterns use movement. As encyclopaedias are based upon language that can sound different when spoken by different people, so too are the movements of a pattern subject to variations of ‘accent’. Asking what is the ‘correct’ way to execute a particular technique is like asking a New Zealander, a Scot and a Canadian what is the correct way to pronounce a particular word. Although there is general consensus that a particular technique is required, there will often be variation in how that movement is performed by an individual based upon their flexibility, agility, size and strength.
What is the correct technique is usually decided by the Class Instructor who is subject to the Regional Instructor who is subject to the Master Instructor. As with any form of communication, the closer we are to using the same pronunciation the better we are able to agree and learn from them.
Patterns are more than just a repetition of our basic movements done in a different format to marching up and down the Dojang floor. They are a method to instil within us automatic responses to attacks from imaginary attackers and should be practised with full power and control.