Haidong Gumdo system is consist of many different training methods. All practitioners will be exposed to the various training methods through their participation in regular classes, seminars and tournaments.
The modern practice of haidong gumdo covers a variety of sword-based activities including:
- Sparring against one or more opponents, incorporating a variety of movements and sword strikes. Sparring may be choreographed or may be “free” or unchoreographed.
- Patterns of movement, or gumbup, are practised as part of preparing for belt and dan gradings. These patterns prepare students for the more technical activities that require mastery of the sword, strength, balance and control.
- Bamboo cutting that applies the sword strikes learned in poomsae as students attempt to cut lengths of bamboo using perfectly-angled strikes. Advanced students are required to cut one or more lengths of bamboo using prescribed cutting techniques and are judged on the accuracy of each cut.
- Paper cutting that teaches students to use the sword with finesse rather than brute strength to slice sheets of specially marked paper suspended from a cutting frame or line. Students are judged on the accuracy of each cut.
- Candle snuffing that teaches students to exercise fine control over their sword strikes as they attempt to extinguish one or more candles without striking the candle wick.
- Sword dancing performed by an individual or a group of dancers in a choreographed performance that build on the innate strength, elegance and grace of the swordsmen’s movements.
- Breathing and meditation are also part of haidong gumdo training and help students to remain calm and focused.
Above all, Haidong Gumdo teaches its exponents strength, discipline and respect for themselves and others.