Pattern Dan Gun – 21 movements
Dan Gun is the yellow belt level form in the Chang Hon system of patterns. Its purpose is to let students build upon their newfound foundation of stances. Whereas the white belt form consisted of a simple series of blocks and punches, students now get additional footwork, quicker movement from one stance to another, and learn open hand techniques.
As with all patterns and new movements, we encourage you to learn your forms in class, with an instructor. This video series allows you to recall what you learned in class to ensure that you practice correctly at home. There is nuance to every move and pattern, and we want to ensure that you do not develop bad habits.
In the following video, you can practice along with Stevens Family instructors Jack Stevens III, and Jenna Davis. Master Jack Stevens calls out each technique, so you can practice with video assistance, or just listen for cues.
Dan Gun – Energy from the Sun
After white belt, beginner students are taught that yellow signifies “Energy from the Sun.” What this means is that the student now has built their foundation and can start to more clearly see their path to improvement. Dan Gun is still considered a beginner level pattern, however, it will show clearly how well the student has internalized the basics learned at white belt. The student is introduced to spinning motion techniques, and multidirectional movement. The patterns created in the Chang Hon system are named after important people, places, or historical events in Korean history.
Dan Gun’s 21 movements follow an “I” shape formation. It begins with an open hand technique, followed by an advancing punch. This is done bilaterally. This is where Dan Gun differs from the white belt “block, punch, turn” format. It then advances with punches, before requiring a spinning motion to a square block. Square blocks are an inner forearm block and simultaneous high block, often requiring quite a bit of thought from beginner students. As the pattern continues on, it culminates in spinning knife hand strikes, and an advancing punch.
This pattern requires more thought and balance. While part of the focus is still on ensuring that the student’s stances are correct, there are now more aspects to consider. Open hand techniques require tensing through the hands that most people aren’t used to. Students must also focus on more difficult ranges of motion in their techniques by performing square blocks.
After the pattern concludes, the left foot returns to ready position.