Discover the modern history of taekwondo... right here... today!
Our modern history of taekwondo begins after the second world war.
Korea was no longer under Japanese rule.
And Korean people were free to practice martial arts and re-develop their wonderful culture.
Several martial arts schools sprang up after world war 2. These schools were called Kwans.
The master of each Kwan taught skills taken from Japanese martial arts like Karate and Judo. They also added traditional Korean kicking skills to the mix.
The Kwans were similar in many ways. And also different in many ways.
After lots of discussions most of the Kwans united. And they decided on the name taekwondo.
taekwondo travels the globe
Taekwondo Masters and their demonstration teams traveled the world to teach taekwondo. And to show off their amazing skills. This was a very important step in the modern history of taekwondo.
In 1973 a group of 7th Dan Black Belts toured Europe, Africa, and the Middle and Far East. The tour was a huge success. More than 100,000 people watched the demonstrations in Egypt alone. That's a lot of people!
1974 saw the first World Taekwondo Championships in Montreal, Canada.
The first European Taekwondo Championships took place in Holland in 1976.
And 1981 saw the first Pacific Area Taekwondo Championships.
WTF taekwondo was an official demonstration sport for the 1988 Olympic Games in Seoul. And taekwondo became a full Olympic sport in 1992.
Today tkd is the most popular martial art in the world. Around 90 million people train around the globe. And taekwondo is open to everyone. Old or young. Male or female. It doesn't matter!
modern day taekwondo in Korea
Taekwondo is very popular in Korea. There are dojangs in every town. Korean people consider taekwondo very important education for children.
Also taekwondo is a compulsory part of training for the South Korean Army and Police Force.
At Yong In and Chung Cheong Universities we trained with students studying full time degree courses in taekwondo. Imagine that! A degree in taekwondo!
And taekwondo is now so diverse that we can all choose what we want to learn. Or to learn what suits us best.
We can work towards sporting glory. With an eye on being a champion. Or we can learn more traditional techniques and philosophies. Or we can mix and match the two.
As a taekwondo family we've done the mix and match approach.
In the UK we trained in purely wtf taekwondo.
Here in Australia we continue to learn wtf taekwondo. But we are also studying itf taekwondo, traditional Moo do Kwan forms and techniques. And other methods of self-defense like Hapkido and Krav Maga.
All of which compliment our taekwondo.
And our journey. Like the modern history of taekwondo. Is fascinating!
We find that all the time we learn new things we develop and grow. And we develop a deeper understanding of martial arts. And a deeper understanding ourselves and others.
So what's next? Who knows?
Our club is also teaching Korean Sword fighting.......maybe that's the next challenge!