IntroSome differences between lower rank and upper rank patterns.
- Lower rank patterns stress basic, commonly used techniques, stances, movements, etc. Higher rank forms use more complicated techniques and movements less used during fighting.
- Lower rank patterns emphasize fist techniques and long-range fighting. Higher rank patterns emphasize open hand techniques and close-range fighting. Therefore, if you do not progress beyond 1st-degree black belt, you miss many hand techniques. This means that taekwondo usually does not get credit for many of its hand techniques.
- Higher rank patterns sometimes use blocks to target pressure points for immobilization. So is not always clear as to whether a block is an offensive or defensive technique. Sometimes it can be both.
- In lower level patterns, energy is usually directed into hard, forceful blocks using tensed arms and fists with a stiff stopping motion. Higher level patterns tend to use open hand, soft blocks that use a deflecting push-through motion.
- Lower rank patterns use blocks that block an attack near the end of its motion. Upper level blocks tend to block an attack well before its movement is completed, sometimes just as it starts moving.
- Since most people are right-handed, most attacks are with the right arm so the defender blocks with the left arm and then attacks with the right arm. Since the emphasis of taekwondo is on defense, this means most patterns start their first movement toward the left. This is especially true in lower rank patterns, but there are exceptions, such as in kwang-gae.
- Higher rank patterns are usually long, such as yusin, and tend to use less repetitive techniques and movements.