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Tae Kwon Do

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Tae Kwon Do

The origin of Korean Karate like many other martial arts is obscure. If you were to read the various books on the subject you would come across many conflicting stories depending on who wrote the book and for what organization. Often enough Tang Soo Do or Tae Kwon Do the two main styles of Korean Karate are presented as having their roots in ancient Korea. Some claim that it has its origins in three dynasties, the Silla dynasty (668-935 A.D.), the Paekche dynasty (15 B.C. to 668 A.D.), and the Koguryu dynasty (935-1392 A.D.). There is no evidence linking Korean Karate or any modern day Korean martial art to the ancient Korean arts.

Korean Karate actually has its roots in Japanese Shotokan Karate-Do. All of the basic stances, forms, and blocks are found in Japanese Karate. This is not surprising because of the Japanese occupation of Korea all native martial arts were suppressed and Koreans were forced to Japanese martial arts instead. In Korea these forms were modified especially were kicking is concerned. Korean kicking is more varied than Japanese kicking and is probably derived from a solely kicking martial art of Korea called Tae Kyun. The name Tang Soo Do is a direct translation of the Japanese Karate-Do originally meaning the way of the China hand. The name Tang Soo Do was first used by Master Won Kuk Lee the teacher of Master Hwang Kee the father of Korean Karate. Master Hwang Kee later studied under Japanese Karate Master Gogen Yamaguchi. Yamaguchi was the student of Master Itosu Yamaguchi the creator of the Pinan forms which Tang Soo Do's Pyong ahn forms are based.

After World War Two there was a great deal of anti-Japanese feeling in Korea. General Choi Hong Hi a student of the founder of ...

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...s would establish the basis of American kickboxing. As more practitioners concentrated on the sport form of Tae Kwon Do, instructors began emphasizing competition than self-defense. As an example have touch blocks have long replaced formal blocks in sparring. As a sport Tae Kwon Do progressed quite slowly. In 1962, Tae Kwon Do was included as one of the official events in the 43rd annual National Athletic Meet. In May 1973, the first biennial World Tae Kwon Do Championships were held in Korea with more than 30 countries participating. Tae Kwon Do's big break came in 1982 when the International Olympic Committee made it an official demonstration sport for the 1988 Olympics in Seoul, South Korea.
In conclusion Korean karate is a spreading martial art and its popularity are on the rise. I hope I have interested you to learn more about this particular martial art.

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