School Blog
Perfection Isn't Enough PDF Print E-mail

Of the applicants who apply for admissions at Harvard University, 10% have scored perfectly on the SAT. Approximately 10% of applicants have the recognition of being number one academically in their high school graduating class. From each group, 1,000 of the applicants do not get an offer to be Harvard students. Academic perfection isn't enough.

College admissions personnel are looking for more than academic success. Employers also need more than a history of perfect academic success. Academic successes is critical; however, perfection only in academics does not demonstrate an overall "well rounded" experience.

Academic success is a good start, but it might not be enough to guarantee a seat. Being a perfectionist at work does not guarantee a promotion.  What does it take to be "well rounded?" Has the person demonstrated creative thinking? Have they participated in team activities? Have they tried something and failed? What did they learn from the failure? Have they volunteered and supported a worthy cause? How did they deal with adversity? Have they participated in dance, music, martial arts, or other activities which requires self-discipline.  Do they read?  What type of books do they read?

Look for opportunities to learn and expand on perfection. Lifelong learners usually go outside of their area of expertise.  Having various and many experiences is more fun and leads to personal rewards.
Chad C. Carmack, Ed. D.

Three Arrows Around a Balloon - It's the Little Things That Make a Difference PDF Print E-mail

It had been over 30 years since I shot target with a bow and arrow. With my family recently, I took a formal lesson at a private archery club in our community. The instructors were very knowledgeable and expert archery coaches. The most rewarding part of the day was spending time with my family. However, the experience reminded me of how focus, controlled breathing, repetition, and relaxed physical qualities lead to success.

After approximately 45 minutes, each family member was grouping arrows into small areas of the target. As a beginner, it was interesting to see how little technical skills made a big difference in the final resting place of an arrow. In archery, it's the little things that make a difference. Have you noticed that "little things" can make a difference in the success of your personal and professional life?

At the end of the archery lesson, just for fun, our archery coaches placed a balloon in the center of our target. My first arrow was high and left. My second arrow was high and right. My next arrow was low and left. Each of the arrows was no more than 1/2" from the balloon. On my third shot, my coach commented that my left hand was tight and not relaxed. When I relaxed, I finally hit the target.

In professional and personal activities, when we miss our target, it would be wise to look at the fundamentals which lead to success and make necessary adjustments.

Chad C. Carmack, Ed. D.

Delaware Hapkido Goal: Self-Identity (awareness that you have a unique identity)

Criminals Look for Easy Targets PDF Print E-mail

Below you will find a few "things learned" during our June 2013 personal protection seminar:

.   "You are in control. You can choose your reaction and therefore your situation."
.   "You make your own choices. Be aware, yet prepared."
.  "The levels of awareness (white, yellow, red, black) and how when out in public you should stay at the yellow awareness level."
.  "Self protection – watch the hands."
.   "I really liked the video and making your own weather and controlling your reaction/response."
.   Strategies for how to handle people who approach and ask for money – "Pumping gas, public places, what to do when approached wanting spare money."

What will a criminal see?  Criminals look for targets they can overwhelm with surprise, speed and skill.  In most cases, 80% of their focus will be on non-verbal cues. What do easy targets look like to a predator?

.   They are not alert and appear to be unaware of their external environment
.   They have their head down and do not make eye contact
.   When confronted, they have “happy feet”
.   They have their hands in their pockets or by their sides

Personal sharing and group discussion activities are benefits of Delaware Hapkido personal protection seminars. What an outstanding experience for the facilitator and participants! Thank you participants!

Delaware Hapkido Goal: Self-Defense (Use reasonable force when it appears reasonably necessary to prevent an impending injury)

What should I do if...? PDF Print E-mail

For classroom teachers, transitions can mean the difference between keeping students engaged or losing the focus of the lesson. Master teachers make it look effortless. They know the importance of connecting one activity to another.  Transitions may look different, but the best teachers use transitions to get results.

During our advanced training seminar (June 13, 2013), several students asked questions which summarized communicated, "What happens if ...?"  The answer was simplistic but important. Students must learn how to transition. When an attacker knows a counter or instinctively escapes a martial arts technique, a well-trained martial artist smoothly transitions to the next technique. The very best martial artists don't think about the next move – it just happens because of hours and hours of training. Just like the master classroom teacher, they make transitioning from one movement to another look effortless but get results.

There are endless "what if's." "What if's" are in our martial arts training and in the real world. We never know what is coming next. Experience and an understanding that transitions are fundamental principles of life will help move you to the next life activity. Be like a master classroom teacher or martial artist. Prepare for the transitions; change is coming. Stay calm, stay positive, and link experiences to the next life activity.

Delaware Hapkido Goal: Self-Identity (awareness that you have a unique identity)

If you think the problem is "out there" ... PDF Print E-mail

Anytime you think the problem is “out there” that thought is the problem. We empower what’s out there to control us. The change paradigm is “outside in” – what’s out there has to change before we can change. Source: Franklin Covey

No! You're Not Taking My Car! PDF Print E-mail

When you are out in public, what is your level of alertness? Are you the type of person who scans the parking lot? Do you go for a run without a headset and music loudly playing? Do you walk down the street with your head up scanning the people around you? Criminals look for weak and easy targets!

Mr. Keith Rudy, a red belt at our academy, recently demonstrated the importance of being aware of surroundings. While leaving a store and walking to his vehicle, he noticed a man walking towards his vehicle. Mr. Rudy probably surprised the man who might have been looking for an easy theft. Criminals love to find open car doors so they can help themselves to whatever is in the car. This is all speculation – no matter what, the man had bad intentions in mind.

Seeing Mr. Rudy, the man probably had to readjust his plan, so he communicated to Mr. Rudy that he was going to take Mr. Rudy's car. In this type of situation, can you imagine the stress which could easily take over your body and mind? In most cases, victims talk about their complete fixation with the problem. Tunnel vision takes over.

Mr. Rudy did not fall into a state of tunnel vision. He even noticed another vehicle coming in his direction. The man appeared to have a partner.

There are no absolutes in how to defend yourself. Sometimes it's appropriate to run away from danger.

Mr. Rudy's alertness helped him assess the situation. He prepared by taking a fighting stance and communicated very forcefully that no one was going to take his car. In no way did he look like an easy victim. He was not perceived as an easy target. In fact, I'm certain the man considered his own safety as an issue. He ran as fast as he could away from Mr. Rudy.

I appreciate Mr. Rudy allowing us to share his "real world" situation. It was clear that his awareness in the parking lot gave him options. By scanning the parking lot, he was not taken by surprise. He also did not freeze and only see one person. He was able to stay calm and notice that the man on foot had a partner. Finally, he made a decision. He decided to communicate firmly by voice and physical posture that he was not going to be a victim.

Stay alert! Never look like a victim.

Delaware Hapkido Goal: Self-Defense (Use reasonable force when it appears reasonably necessary to prevent an impending injury)

Chad C. Carmack, Ed. D.

Recognize and Apply the Strategies Which Help You Learn. PDF Print E-mail

Patterns are everywhere around us. We start learning about patterns early in life. Children play and build with blocks and other objects. They put things together to produce creative works of art. Parents acknowledge enthusiastically that the structures are "works of art."

Later in life we learn complex systems by utilizing patterns. Scientists understand that symmetry in molecules and patterns in space affect the infrared spectrum. Stock traders are constantly watching patterns in order to make purchasing or selling decisions. Students learn patterns in algebra in order to transition to calculus.

Some people learn by visualizing patterns. While teaching a new form (series of martial arts movements and techniques), Sophie, one of our youth, raised her hand and asked a question, "What is the pattern?" She has awareness that she learns by organizing movements logically through pattern structures.

Understanding your personal learning style, which might include pattern awareness, provides a learning advantage. Who wouldn't want a learning edge?  Awareness of the principles of patterns has applications inside the martial arts training facility and in the “real world.” Recognize and apply the strategies which help you learn.

Personal Protection Seminar PDF Print E-mail

Sponsored by Delaware Hapkido Martial Arts Academy, Inc.
Date:          Saturday, June 15, 2013
Time:         11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Hockessin United Methodist Church
7250 Lancaster Pike
Hockessin, DE 19707
(west side entrance of the facility)

IMG 3315 350 2

Seminar details: Delaware Hapkido Martial Arts Academy, Inc. will present a free  personal protection seminar to men and women age 16 and above. Bring your family members, friends, colleagues and others who might benefit from learning how to actively avoid and escape an attack. Our seminar objectives are below:

•    to introduce our crime awareness curriculum and escape tactics
•    to identify the fundamental tools of a predator
•    to practice a response to the first contact by a person who might have bad intentions

To register, please e-mail, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , or call 302-598-7596.

Memorial Day PDF Print E-mail

Monday is Memorial Day.  It's time to remember those who served.  More than 1 million soldiers have given their lives serving our nation. Please take the time to think about the men and women who served. Their sacrifice made a difference in our lives.

Little Acts of Honesty PDF Print E-mail

When charged too little at a store, what do you do?  

One of our martial arts students was purchasing four subs.  She noticed that the charge was for three subs.  She pointed the mistake out to the cashier.  This was a simple example of integrity.

Little acts of honesty can tell you much about a person.

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