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November 15, 1993 - Image 16

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1993-11-15

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8- The Michigan Daily - SPORTSMonday - Monday, November 15, 1993

Continued from page 3
kickingthe hell out of Michigan to
get to the Rose Bowl would make it
X11l the more sweet.
;Of course, the two paths that the
Buckeyes and the Wolverines have
folloiwed this season have made
many in my family smile. While the
ribbing hasn't come on a weekly
basis, it has been pretty steady.
In the 1993 season, it is as if the
entire state of Ohio has been
reedemed in one fell swoop. All the
fans have had the year they
dreamed of. Yet the fans didn't
need all of these incentives to pump

themselves up. The Ohio State-
Michigan game, and all the glory it
possesses, is enough itself to satisfy
Buckeye fans.
However, I wonder at times
whether anyone around here really
cares anymore about the rivalry with
Ohio State. The complacency of
beating a team over and over again
seems to have deaden the magnitude
of the game, at least from a
Wolverine fan's standpoint.
But make no mistake, Ohio State
will be ready for the Wolverines next
Saturday. The Buckeyes have been
waiting for this moment for some
time. Hopefully the Wolverines will
be up to the challenge.
It is that time of year again.

Taekwondo club enjoys 25 years of success -
Diverse membership cherish camaraderie and commitment




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If you want to see Ralph Macchio
demonstrate his crane kick, don't
bother showing up at the taekwondo
club meeting tonight. He won't be
there and neither will his fancy moves.
This, of course, is not meant to insult
Mr. Macchio's martial arts ability-
we all know how talented he is.
Physical domination is not the key
to excelling in this martial art. The
patch on Michigan's taekwondo
club's uniform outlines its formula
for success. Its motto, similar to that
of the Olympics, is: stronger, faster,
higher and wiser.
Most of the club's success is due
to the dedication and hard work of its
instructors and members. Unfortu-
nately for Macchio, Michigan has an
even better teacher than Mr. Miyagi.
For the past 25 years, Grand Master
HwaChong, arareninth-degree black
belt, has taught this Korean martial
art at Michigan.
Grand Master Chong teaches a
taekwondo class in the Division of
Kinesiology's Adult Lifestyles Pro-
gram and has advised the club on a
regular basis. A native of Korea,
Chong shares his knowledge with
many Michigan students and mem-
bers of his Detroit-based Martial Arts
"College doesn't teach (students)
about philosophy. I have the experi-
ence of leadership from the Korean
studentuprising in 1961 tohelp them,"
Chong said.
"The first priority of students is to
study. People are our main resources,
and somehow modem education ne-
glects to emphasize human develop-
ment," Chong added, citing the im-
portance ofphilosophy as themotiva-
tion that led drove him to pursue a
careerin teaching. "Taekwondo gives
them confidence, wisdom and pa-
Besides his three children who
have attended Michigan, other stu-
dents admire him, comparing his sta-
tus to that of the highest ranking gen-
eral in the army. You can be sure that
the 30membersofthisclubare thrilled
to have such a prestigious leader.
Laura Kistler, a Ph.D candidate in
aerospace engineering and four-year
club member, won the Black Belt
Middleweight title at the 1993 Na-
tional Collegiate Taekwondo Cham-
pionship. Emerging the champion of
a 260-person field, Kistler attributes

her success to the quality of instruc-
tion here at Michigan.
"I've only trained here," she said.
"I'm particularly grateful to the per-
sonal training of Master Chong, but it's
a shared effort of all the instructors."
Jerylin Bell, president of the
taekwondo club, believes that the club
program is more rigorous than the
class offered in Ann Arbor.
"Class is really a class. Of course,
everyone in the first class is the same
rank. Everyone is learning the same
thing at the same time," she said.
However, in the club, the routine
and the diversity of students is more
The class meets two days a week,
whereas the club meets three days a
week, with an optional fourth prac-

is spent on social functions for them,
as opposed to university and national
Natalie Bennett, a third-year Rack-
ham student, has finally pursued a
lifetime interest in martial arts by
joining the club this year.
"At first I thought it was a closed
activity. I showed up one time and
everyone was really welcoming."
Bennett said. "I thought I was going
to walk into a room with a lot of sweat
and testosterone. People are so sin-
cere, helping me along. The moral
support makes me go back."
Club members often rent movies,
go out to dinner and have picnics and
"One thing a lot of people find out
when they come to school (is that)
they have a group of dorm friends and
a group of class friends. After a while,
they may get tired of people, or they
may just have a need to expand their
horizons and meet other people and
have an interest in martial arts," said
Gary Gross, a Michigan alumnus:
"They'll find our group to be so-
cial andexpandtheirgroupof friends,"
Gross continued. He believes that like
him, many members come away from
the club activities with, if nothing
else, one close friend.
"Idon't think our turnover rate is
that high," he said. "The people who
generally give us a try generally stick
with us."
Those who do stick with
taekwondo learn what distinguishes
it from karate, technically and histori-
Technically, karate is 50 percent
kicking and 50 percent punching,
whereas taekwondo is closer to 80
percent punching and20 percentkick-
ing, making it a very offensive mar-
tial art.
Karate is believed to have been
developed in ancient Japan as a form
of defense for peasants without weap-
ons. Some trace taekwondo to similar
roots, but as a competitive sport it
seems to have blossomed more fully
here in the United States.
Grandmaster Chong has played a
major role in furthering taekwondo's
popularity in the United States.
Black belt instructor Mike
Spigarelli, a member since January
1985, described Chong's significant
"Taekwondo to him has always
been his life, it's never really been his
livelihood. I believe he teaches for the

strict love of the sport."
Chong was recently elected Presi-
dent of the United States Taekwondo
Union, the official body recognized
by the United States Olympic Com-
mittee. Among his many commit-
ments, Chong now heads the organi-
zation that oversees 12 million
taekwondo practitioners nationwide.
Taekwondo was a demonstration
sport in the 1988 Summer Olympics,
when he was the team's manager, and
again in 1992. Chong's principle goal
as president is to achieve Olympic
medal sport status at the 1996 Olym-
pics in Atlanta.
"It certainly has always been his
dream togettaekwondointo theOlym-
pics," said Spigarelli of Chong.
Chong's list of accomplishments
include being the first president of the
Michigan Taekwondo Association,
President of the Korean Community
Service of Michigan and the honor of
having coached two Olympians.
"It is a very strange thing to have
aninth-degree black belt in ateaching
role, particularly in a white-belt teach-
ing class," Spigarelli said.
Most of the instructors, including
Spigarelli and head club instructor
Master Joseph Lloyd, who has taught
here for 25 years, are students of
Grand Master Chong. No one is paid
to teach the club; they simply do it to
give back to the club and for enjoy-
"When I was invited here in 1968,
I saw the very high quality of students
and their enthusiasm," Chong said of
his choice to teach at Michigan.
Jayme Hart, a sophomore in Engi-
neering, has been active in taekwondo
for the last four years, but this is his
first at Michigan.
Hart is excited about the overall
atmosphere of this club and feels it is
superior to his former instruction, cost
(it's cheaper here) and training op-
"I came here and learned a lot
more than before," Hart said. "It's
always a really good workout, and it's
rewarding. It brings out your drive a
little more when you know your in-
"For 25 years we've been on this
campus. We've been going tocompe-
titions, and our masters have been
teaching us the skills that win med-
als," club president Bell said.
Yet within this club, medals aren't
the only representation of its success.


I 99







tice session. Each club meeting con-
sists of stretching, bowing, medita-
tion, instruction and drills which in-
volve kicking and sparring exercises.
The level of skill in the club is
much greater than that of the class.
Ranking from lowest to highest, the
club trains a rainbow of belts: white,
yellow, green, blue, purple, brown,
red, red/black and black.
Members of the taekwondo club
believe their success is derived from the
same reasonthatmakes theirclub stand
apart from others: their willingness to
accept anyone, expert or novice.
There are no requirements to join,
and new members are surprised when
they learn that no athletic ability or
knowledge of martial arts is neces-
sary. The range of age within the class
stretches from 18 to 31. The majority
of members are older, and about a
dozen of them practice year-round.
Taekwondo club members pay
dues, yet the majority of their money



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