A Problem

This is a new one by me. Even after over five years in martial arts I've never encountered the problem I'm about to relate. It has a few facets, so please bear with me.

We have a student in HKD who is, to put it mildly, well-aged. He apparently has a great amount of zeal when it comes to applying these techniques even though, due to his fragile nature, we cannot apply the same techniques to him.

Now, before you start thinking I'm "eye for an eye" about martial arts - that anyone who applies a technique must feel the same application - rest assured that's not the case. I do believe, however, that anyone who wants to undertake a class in joint manipulation should be able to have his or her joints manipulated to a reasonable degree. For example, if you had advanced arthritis, then this probably isn't the class for you.

Well, that's the case with this student. He's made it to orange belt (level 3) largely because the techniques aren't overly damaging. However, he's also managed to do so without having any techniques really applied to him. This presents another problem entirely: he cannot develop the control that a regular student would because he does not know how it feels to be tweaked in a particular way. While this may serve him well in a self-defense situation (I have my doubts), it will not help other students avoid injury. I fear the day we pair him with a white belt and the new student gets injured.

Secondly, he is a former 2nd degree black belt in TKD (the same rank I currently hold). Apparently, this inactive rank gives him the impression he has more experience/authority than he actually does. Rank doesn't carry over. Period. For example, if I were to wear my black belt into a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu class & pretend that was my rank in that art...well, let's say the butt whipping I took wouldn't be soon forgotten.

The first rank problem with this student is that he tries to advise people far senior to him in HKD on how to perform a technique. The most memorable of which was chastising - there's no other word for it - two 2nd degree black belts on how one wasn't defending himself properly. For the record, he was. It was dealt with & we've made a point to impress on this guy that it won't be tolerated. Sadly though, his ignorance in techniques seems to make him feel he knows more than he does. He advises other color belts on how to execute techniques. Heck, I'm 1st degree & I don't say anything unless there's an obvious problem. This guy has no place doing such things.

The second rank problem exists in TKD. As I said before, he formerly held the rank of 2nd degree in this art. This has not been recognized by my instructor - and while he may have held it he isn't active, so it counts for nothing. One of our assistant instructors informed me in a phone conversation yesterday that he actually tried to instruct/advise students in TKD. Since he knows nothing about our instructors teaching style and we had a very capable instructor in Mr. Lee that day, a number of lines were crossed. Mr. Lee told him to take a seat, but I fear the problem isn't addressed.

My instructor is on vacation for the next three weeks and my problem is how to deal with this student without overstepping my bounds. I am senior while Master Rion is gone & will address issues in his absence. I'm of the mind that the next transgression of instructor authority will put this guy out on the street. However, I think that might be disrespectful to our instructor and the school in general.

What to do?


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