View Poll Results: What to do about the 'Is Shaolin-Do for real?' thread

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  • Unlock IS-Dfr. Merge all S-D threads together so it clears 1000 posts!

    22 38.60%
  • Unlock IS-Dfr. Let all the S-D threads stand independently.

    13 22.81%
  • Keep IS-Dfr locked down. All IS-Dfr posters deserved to be punished.

    5 8.77%
  • Delete them all. Let Yama sort them out.

    17 29.82%
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Thread: Is Shaolin-Do for real?

  1. #19951
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    Best of all, at the end of the book, Grandmaster Sin Kwang The´ bestows the ancient Nei Kung technique of “Eternal Youth” onto his faithful readers, which, when combined with a special, enhanced “Green Smoothie” elixir he has developed just for you, can extend your life expectancy by decades!

    I'm pretty sure the only thing tongs do nowadays is make sure Chinese restaurants don't pay out tips to their waiters. - Pazman[/B]

    https://scontent-b-pao.xx.fbcdn.net/...8a&oe=52848D36

  2. #19952
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    Quote Originally Posted by Judge Pen View Post
    Having been out of the SD loop for a while, I missed the announcements of this publication: https://smile.amazon.com/Last-Grandm...=sin+kwang+the
    Me, too.

    Do not come on here often, anymore.

  3. #19953
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    Found our Practice of the Spear form

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ML-MP_VQRvU

    Here's the original version of our Qiang Shu Lian Shi "Practice of the Spear Fighting Techniques." It's practically the exact same form start-to-finish. You can see where SD deviated from the original in 1-2 spots by adapting the technique (or changing slightly), but only ever-so slightly. Pretty ****ed close to a carbon copy if ever I've seen one.
    No, no, no. You're not thinking. You're just being logical---Niels Bohr

    Oh yeah!??!! Well, my dad could beat up your dad!--Lineage-Haters

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  4. #19954
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    Have to agree, Wookie

  5. #19955
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shaolin Wookie View Post
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ML-MP_VQRvU

    Here's the original version of our Qiang Shu Lian Shi "Practice of the Spear Fighting Techniques." It's practically the exact same form start-to-finish. You can see where SD deviated from the original in 1-2 spots by adapting the technique (or changing slightly), but only ever-so slightly. Pretty ****ed close to a carbon copy if ever I've seen one.
    I think the The’ brothers were teaching that form in the 70’s

  6. #19956
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    Quote Originally Posted by bodhi warrior View Post
    I think the The’ brothers were teaching that form in the 70’s
    Yes, and both still teach it. Our Luo Spear has characteristics of the Luojia style (same with Yang/Meihua), but I haven't quite seen a carbon copy like this one. I'd be curious to know the origin of the Qiang Shu form depicted, since it might point to the common source--old or new.
    No, no, no. You're not thinking. You're just being logical---Niels Bohr

    Oh yeah!??!! Well, my dad could beat up your dad!--Lineage-Haters

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  7. #19957
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    OMG!!!

    I have been gone for YEARS!!!!! I come back and this thread is STILL on the top!!
    Those that are the most sucessful are also the biggest failures. The difference between them and the rest of the failures is they keep getting up over and over again, until they finally succeed.


    For the Women:

    + = & a

  8. #19958
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shaolin Wookie View Post
    Yes, and both still teach it. Our Luo Spear has characteristics of the Luojia style (same with Yang/Meihua), but I haven't quite seen a carbon copy like this one. I'd be curious to know the origin of the Qiang Shu form depicted, since it might point to the common source--old or new.
    The “Common. Source” is probably a book on spear forms that Sin The checked out of a library.
    He most honors my style who learns under it to destroy the teacher. -- Walt Whitman

    Quote Originally Posted by David Jamieson View Post
    As a mod, I don't have to explain myself to you.

  9. #19959
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    Duh

    Quote Originally Posted by MasterKiller View Post
    The “Common. Source” is probably a book on spear forms that Sin The checked out of a library.
    Agreed. I meant, of the actual form, not the copyist.
    No, no, no. You're not thinking. You're just being logical---Niels Bohr

    Oh yeah!??!! Well, my dad could beat up your dad!--Lineage-Haters

    For all nonsense there is an equal and opposite nonsense---Wook

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  10. #19960
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    hello out there?? lol just had to check back in
    ...or is there something i have missed a glimpse of phantoms in the mist. Traveling down a dusty road bent forward with this heavy load..

  11. #19961
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shaolin Wookie View Post
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ML-MP_VQRvU

    Here's the original version of our Qiang Shu Lian Shi "Practice of the Spear Fighting Techniques." It's practically the exact same form start-to-finish. You can see where SD deviated from the original in 1-2 spots by adapting the technique (or changing slightly), but only ever-so slightly. Pretty ****ed close to a carbon copy if ever I've seen one.
    Interesting. Anyone know the exact origins of the form in the video?
    Quote Originally Posted by Oso View Post
    AND, yea, a good bit of it is about whether you can fight with what you know...kinda all of it is about that.

  12. #19962
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    No. Qiang Shu is a pretty common routine that he could've picked up anywhere. I have a conspiracy theory now that involves the Jing Wu Curriculum.

    I parted ways with my CSC Atlanta school 6-7 years ago, right when I had my first kid and the instructor was also moving more into Silat (shout out to him! ), and have since been taking lessons from a couple of instructors (7 star mantis / Chen Tai Chi, SanFeng & Xuanwu Wudang [Liangyi])--mostly private lessons, seminars, training buddies, and informal study groups, not much in "formal" schools. Went back to my Longfist roots, too, and studied those hard for 6 years--let most of my SD forms lapse outside of Black Tiger/Crane/Bird/spears/tai chi/Jiang Bagua. It's amazing what focusing daily on a handful of traditional and incredibly basic Longfist forms did for me and whatever I wished to retain from SD. I don't think I appreciated what I learned 15 years ago in my Longfist classes as much as I should've--but then, that was a non-sparring school so it tended to get boring.

    Anyways, for the conspiracy theory: I crossed paths with a guy from Taiwan who had a root in JingWu's basic curriculum a couple of years back, and he helped me get Jie Quan correct. He also taught me 2 other Jing Wu forms in private instruction: Gong Li Quan and Da Zhan Quan.

    So here's something interesting: Jin Gun Fu Hu Chien (I forget the spelling/name, but I think that is what it was called) is--minus a couple of repetitions where you mirror the form on the opposite side--a chop suey version of Da Zhang Quan (Big Battle Fist). When I was learning this form, I had this weird deja vu moment--i hand't done the tiger form for several years by that point. I tried to find a good representation of the form to show y'all what I mean. This is probably a good reference: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nc8yRjSW6ks. You have to take out the tiger, clean up the postures (change the techniques), and look for the right sequences: particularly [00:034 & 00.40, and the kick at 1:00 incorrectly taught as a combo with a roundhouse, and 1:15 double hand strike to tiger steals the heart, incorrectly taught with a groin grab instead of a straight punch]. Instead of tiger palm strikes, Da Zhang features the basic backfist/cross body extension (like the slanting tai chi application for Yang). Jie Quan also features these in the original. The opening, the jump/turns, the ending--it can't be a coincidence. Also, you move off to the 45 degree angle right about the middle of the form where SD has you rear back to fake leg, elbow in with right elbow, rake back/roundouse (or something like that, if I recall it correcty). I think either the The' brothers or their teachers (a JingWu expat?) chopped up the form and turned it into tiger [perhaps to teach kids something basic?]. Or someone had a bad memory of it; or hte The' brothers butchered it. Either that, or the brothers pirated the basic pattern and passed it off as tiger. This would also explain why the intro to the form is so reminiscent of Jie Quan since it has a common source (which is, based on what i had to fix, pretty dang close to the spirit of the original). **ALSO, unrelated--the bowing intro to the three basic Tai Peng forms [Great Bird Opens the Wings] is from the Longfist style [as taught in Lian Bu Quan]. Sometimes the little details betray a lot that went unsaid. Also, Longfist revealed some errors, I think, in how the Tai Peng (basically, short Longfist routines) style was passed on through SD, particularly with regard to stances and transitions. I'm betting the SD godfathers who originated this with both The' brothers (unless they originated it) originally used it like my Longfist teacher used Wu Bu Quan (or for the SD mantis folks, the Stance linkage of QI SHOU).

    I'm fairly certain that either the The' brothers or some of their teachers at Chung Yen were teaching a modified curriculum taken from the Longfist routines in Jing Wu's program (either learning it secondhand from someone or else pirating it). That would explain why they wound up with Jie Quan, Lian Wu Zhang, and some modified (I'm being polite) version of Da Zhang Quan (tiger-fied by someone who wanted a tiger form). I think that the Sea Dragon Cane was an abridgement of Jing Wu's Qun Yang Gun (Shepherd's Staff). Too many likenesses to go ignored. Overall, somehow a modified version of Jing Wu's curriculum wound up in Shaolin-Do, by hook or by crook. They could've gotten Qiang Shu from anyone in Jing Wu. Jing Wu taught about 10 basic forms that were pretty standard, but they also had some mantis and local stuff depending on the styles of whoever it was that formed the local association.

    Anyways, train hard what you have and what you love. Hope you all are doing well.
    Last edited by Shaolin Wookie; 05-17-2019 at 09:18 AM.
    No, no, no. You're not thinking. You're just being logical---Niels Bohr

    Oh yeah!??!! Well, my dad could beat up your dad!--Lineage-Haters

    For all nonsense there is an equal and opposite nonsense---Wook

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  13. #19963

    Talking My Experience - 1 of 2

    Hello everyone,
    I’m new to the forum but have read quite a few of the posts on this thread and felt compelled to offer my 2 cents on Shaolin-Do, its effectiveness as a Martial Art, Sin Kwang The’, and the lawsuit between The’ and Rydberg. As a student of SD with many years of training, I feel like I’m qualified to offer a fair assessment.
    First, let me preface this by stating that I do not and will not defend Sin Kwang The’ for the blatant lies he has told. There’s simply no excuse for it and a lie is a lie no matter what his intentions may have been. I’m going to be as objective as possible and give my honest “review” of my experience with SD.
    I started my training in SD over 9 years ago. I had previously studied both Goju-Ryu and Shorin-Ryu Karate, each for a little over a year until my Senseis moved away. The SD school was the only other martial arts school nearby other than an American Karate dojo that I had checked out and didn’t like because the instructor seemed arrogant to me. At the time I didn’t know anything about SD or its history; only that it was a Kung Fu school and taught Chinese Martial Arts. The name did strike me as odd since I knew “Shaolin” was a Chinese word and “Do” was Japanese but I didn’t think too much about it. I called the instructor and asked a few simple questions he was more than happy to answer and said I could come down to watch and/or participate in a class any time I wanted. That evening I went down to watch a class and was surprised to see the students in Karate Gi’s and belts. I had expected either Oui’s or just T-Shirts and pants since they were teaching Chinese Martial Arts. When I asked the instructor he told me they used to wear the Oui’s but they kept getting torn and so they switched (back) to the Gi’s. After participating in a few classes I could see why the Gi’s made more sense – they’re just simply more robust. It wasn’t something I really gave much thought to or cared about at the time and since I had previously studied Karate I was already accustomed to the Gi anyway. The Japanese ranking system didn’t bother me either since many other arts have adopted it, including many Chinese schools and I actually thought it was kind of cool. I asked about the history of the art and the lineage/etc as well as the instructor’s qualifications. He was more than happy to share the information and gave me an abridged version of the history that Sin The’ teaches but he did tell me to “take that for what it’s worth”. I saw that the class was run very formally – They did a bow in and bow out, bowed to each other, weren’t allowed to speak unless addressed, etc. The black belts all seemed very competent and I talked to quite a few of them and they were all able to answer any question I gave them. I decided to come back in a couple days to try out a class since the first week was free.
    My first impression of SD was that it seemed less like the Kung Fu that I had seen and more like an “American” style of Karate, and at its core, I believe that’s what SD truly is – an American style of Karate. I can see a lot of Shotokan, Shorin-Ryu, and Taekwondo aspects in the system, with a little bit of some different Kung Fu (broad term, I know) structures thrown in as well. GM Sin’s explanation for this is that all other arts evolved from SD and that’s why you see these other styles in the SD system but that simply just doesn’t make sense. Although true that Okinawan Karate did evolve from Shaolin Kung Fu and Taekwondo from Okinawan Karate, traditional Kung Fu schools don’t teach those styles of forms… In fact, before he started using the term “Shaolin-Do”, Sin The’ called his art “The Sin The’ Karate Club”. I’ve seen some patches and certificates floating around over the years with that name on it and his school in Lexington is still called the Sin The’ Karate School”. He also had a program on Kentucky Educational TV many years ago with his brother Hiang that was called “Karate with Sin and Hiang The’”… So my theory is that when the Karate craze of the 80s became big he was looking for a way to make his art stand out and so he invented the Shaolin-Do name and story as a way to market his system. From the very beginning I didn’t put much weight into the whole story and it didn’t matter to me since I was there to learn self-defense and stay in shape regardless of the “history” of the art. I’ve always lived by the motto “If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is”, and that’s the case with SD’s history.
    I really enjoyed my first few months of training. It reminded me a lot of how my Goju-Ryu Karate classes were conducted. We’d start with a warmup for 10-15 minutes, work on our forms (kata) for 20-30 minutes, and then usually we’d work on application of the forms. I’ve read a lot of stories from former students saying they never were shown any applications and that they were just drilled repetitively on forms but that certainly wasn’t/isn’t the case with my school. A great deal of time was spent on learning basic punching/kicking techniques and stances. I didn’t have much trouble with that since I’ve studied other martial arts before and already had a decent knowledge of how to throw different strikes and stand in certain stances. We have sparring as a separate class at least twice or more a month where we spar each other and also work on actually learning sparring techniques; not just dancing around each other throwing our arms and legs at each other. We also have “free gym time” where we can come in and work on our material in an informal manner, either with an instructor or without, and get additional help from an instructor if we need it, or just to workout. A lot of us use the time for working on new applications or preparing for an upcoming test. There isn’t an additional price for it either so I make as much use of it as I can.
    For the lower belts (white – green), the testing period is usually anywhere from 3-6 months per belt depending on the student and THEIR willingness to commit. At black belt level the time between tests must be a minimum of the number of years relevant to the next rank (so from first-second black it’s a minimum of 2 years and so on). Students aren’t allowed to test until they’re ready and even then they have to pass a “pre-test” before being allowed to even take the actual test in front of one of the Masters or Grandmaster Sin himself. Yes, I have seen several students fail their pretest and/or actual test, and even though I hate to see someone fail, it does make me happy to see that students aren’t just given belts for being there and have to work for their achievements. I myself would much rather fail a test because I deserved to rather than pass a test I didn’t deserve. The tests always include form, conditioning, self-defense (form application), and sparring. The further up in rank you go the more is expected of you during testing. By the time you test for first black they basically throw everything at you including sparring multiple opponents at the same time. If at any test you don’t seem to know your material and/or aren’t able to actually APPLY what you’ve learned you’ll fail your test; again I’ve actually seen people fail. We’ve lost a few students due to this who basically wanted to be handed their next rank just because they were able to do a few forms from start to finish and make them look pretty but couldn’t actually USE what they had learned. Although we have the philosophy that everyone is there to train for different reasons, this is still a martial art they’re learning and as such they should be able to apply what they’ve learned rather than just go through the motions to get a good workout. There is a testing fee but I haven’t ever felt it was unreasonable; usually around $50 and I think it’s even less for the kids. No one is ever forced to test and we’ve had several students through the years who didn’t feel they were ready to test sometimes even though they had met the requirements so they waited. They were never pressured to test and I’ve always had a lot of respect for students who are willing to wait. GM Sin usually conducts 1 or 2 of the tests per year and teaches a seminar afterwards. The seminar fees are usually $50 or so and they last 3-4 hours, although truthfully, at least half this time is spent with him just talking about something outrageous. Again, no one is forced or pressured to take the seminars and most of the time we have only 8-10 who actually do.
    (Continued In Next Post)

  14. #19964

    My Experience - 2 of 2

    (Continued From Previous Post)

    Our instructor was/is very honest with us. He’s told us that the history GM Sin teaches is ambiguous at best and encourages us to do our own research and not just take his or anyone else’s word on anything. He also is very encouraging of cross-training in other martial arts and will talk openly with students who currently train in other arts or who have trained in others before. We have quite a few students who also train in MMA and Jujutsu. I’ve heard a lot of stories where SD instructors tell their students that SD is the only “good” art and will defend that comes out of GM Sin’s mouth and they will shame anyone who says otherwise or who looks into other arts but it’s definitely not the case with our school. He says that more knowledge is never a bad thing and SD is a great art but NO single art has all the answers so it’s best to be well-versed. We also host tournaments and invite other schools who train in other arts, not just SD to compete and we travel to others as well.
    So how effective is SD as a martial art? Well, to me it all depends on the student and instructor. If you have an instructor whose only goal is to make some money and just drills form over and over again, passes students for rank advancement even though they aren’t ready, and doesn’t take the time to work with them, then you’ll only get a very watered-down version of ANY art. Likewise, if a student only puts in the bare minimum amount of effort and doesn’t take the time to really learn his art then it’s just as bad. It’s a huge problem with martial arts schools nowadays that for every 10 students, you may have only 1 or 2 who are actually serious and dedicated to the art and want to be effective with it rather than just get a black belt. But in order to have an entire school you have to have those “lazy” students as well. It is what it is and it’s up to the instructor to make sure he’s not giving out rank to students who aren’t proficient.
    To me the art is very effective but I’ve been blessed with an instructor who really cares and is honest. I also have taken the time to continue to learn and work with other students to better my skills. Luckily I haven’t had to test my abilities in an actual self-defense scenario and I hope never to have to but I do feel confident in what I’ve learned that I’d be able to defend myself if necessary but nothing is ever guaranteed no matter which art you train in. Like Mr. Miyagi says “Someone always knows more”. I’m not being cocky or arrogant but when you truly train nearly every day and put 100% effort into it it’s hard not to feel a sense of confidence. Besides the self-defense aspect of the art, since starting my training I’m in the best physical and mental shape of my life. My training is always evolving and there’s always a new goal I’m working towards.
    I think if GM Sin would’ve been upfront about the art in the first place there would be a lot less people upset with the system as a whole and it would have a better name. There are many successful American Karate studios that don’t rely on absurd or fabricated stories to get and retain students. Also, his whole deal with the Soards was basically a pyramid scheme and did nothing but to help soil the name even further. From my understanding they were basically promoting as many students as they could to start schools for them and then charging commission on each student those schools had. Although it’s hard to believe anything GM Sin says now that everyone knows for sure he lied about his history, I’m not 100% sure that he really did know EVERYTHING that was going on with that whole situation but I’m sure he was making a lot of money so he turned a blind eye. Through research, it seems like the schools on the West Coast were mostly the ones that were the “McDojo” style schools but I may be speculating too much there. I’ve only visited a handful of schools on the East Coast and can safely say the ones I’ve visited or been a part of have all been the exact opposite of the stories I’ve read about the West Coast schools.
    As for GM Sin himself – I’ve met him on several occasions. I’m always polite and respectful to him and I will say I have enjoyed some of the seminars I’ve taken from him. Again, I’m in no way defending him or his lies and I don’t buy into the whole history or the claims he makes about himself but I wouldn’t be where I am today if he hadn’t started SD to begin with. One of the biggest issues I’ve found with him is that he has this “legend status” that follows him everywhere. I can’t count the number of times I’ve heard somebody tell me something like “Somebody told me they saw GM Sin doing [insert any ridiculous ability here]” or “A friend of a friend told me GM Sin did such and such”. The problem is YOU never actually see him doing any of these things he supposedly does; it’s all just knowledge passed around from person to person. I have yet to find anyone in the SD system who has actually SEEN GM Sin doing any of these outrageous things he tells people he can do. He’s a very nice man but obviously full of himself and if you’ve ever attended one of his seminars you’ll find that over half of the time spent is him talking about himself and something he has done. He also stated in his deposition that he hadn’t taught classes on a regular basis since the early 90s or something like that. It’s interesting to me he stopped teaching regular classes at such a young age; there must be some reason why. Again, I don’t think this makes the art any less effective, but it does make it look bad.
    I think the lawsuit against Rydberg was a terrible idea and ended up hurting GM Sin in the long run. You can’t claim ancient origin and then try to copyright it. It’s like trying to copyright Beethoven, Bach, Mozart, etc and then telling other musicians they can no longer perform their songs. I’ve read the deposition and even though it wasn’t a real shock for me to find out the curriculum was made up it does still bother me that he lied to SO MANY people. I’d be willing to bet that there were a LOT of students throughout the years who took SD classes specifically because of the fabricated history they were told. I’m actually surprised at how readily he admitted he made it up. * I do have to state that it was the CURRICULUM and HISTORY that was made up. The techniques are very real (whatever their origin) and as I said above, can be very effective if YOU train properly. Technically, every form from every system was made up by somebody* He was very candid during his deposition and the only other thing I would’ve liked to have known is where he actually got his material from or what arts he actually studied because it obviously isn’t “authentic” Shaolin Kung Fu. Rydberg teaching on his own wasn’t hurting him at all and from what I understand he wasn’t using his name or image to market his school like GM Sin claims he was. Naturally, any student is going to want to know where the instructor learned his art and it’s not copyright infringement just to tell your students you learned something from somebody.
    So all in all, other than the history and GM Sin’s absurd claims about himself, my experience with SD has been well worth it. If you take it for what it is – an American style of Karate basically, then it’s a very good system to train in. You also have to have the right instructor and the right school, which is true for any martial art. I do feel like the curriculum is relevant the way it’s laid out – It starts with basic techniques and forms and then moves into advanced material as you go up in rank. Each rank comes with a specific conditioning set to help you get/stay in shape which is helpful. It’s an eclectic blend of martial arts to say the least.
    If you’ve taken the time to read this entire post I sincerely thank you. I want to reiterate that I’m in no way, shape, or form defending GM Sin or what he has said; only offering my personal experience with Shaolin-Do. I understand there were a LOT of bad schools and instructors out there, mostly on the West Coast and that those coupled with GM Sin’s outright lies have tainted the name of an otherwise effective system.
    Last edited by JCBG; 07-16-2019 at 12:52 PM.

  15. #19965
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    Jcbg

    Great post. I have had the luck of studying with a very practical teacher. I still practice the material up to black belt and find it very rewarding and useful. I would have studied with my teacher regardless of the stories. I loved his teaching style and focus on sparring and conditioning. This was in the late 80’s.
    As far as seeing Sin The’ perform anything remarkable...I have the old KET series. There’s a part where Sin is teaching sparring technique #17. When he done it in real time I had to rewind it around 10 times because I couldn’t believe how fast it was. It was impressive. I’m like you, they shouldn’t have told all those crazy history stories. But the techniques can and will work. As far as Internal material, I’ve only met a handful of people who could properly demonstrate and use the techniques. And they were guys with decades in the system. Personally I think there’s too much material. But that’s just me.

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