Tae Kwon Do's origins date back to about 50 BC. Many of the region's martial arts have influenced Tae Kwon Do over it's long history, most significantly by Japan's Karate-do which has given TaeKwonDo many of it's quick linear movements. Modern Tae Kwon Do is characterized by it's fast, powerful, kicks and strikes. It is a high-level martial art, which focuses on self-defense rather than on attacking. It is aimed at training not only one's mind and body, but also at building one's character.
Tae Kwon Do has four main aspects:
- Poomse (forms)
- Gyroogi (sparring)
- Hosinal (self-defense)
- Kyukpa (breaking)
Tae Kwon Do is an internationally recognized sport which has become one of the fastest growing sports in the world. It was designated as a demonstration sport during the 1988 Seoul and 1992 Barcelonia Olympic Games and adopted as a medal sport during the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games. TaeKwonDo has been accepted for the 2004 Athens and 2008 Bejing Olympic Games as a full medal sport.
There are multiple interpretations of the name TaeKwonDo.
TaeKwonDo is often translated as "the way of hand and foot".
- Tae to strike or block with the foot or to kick; it also means to jump
- K'won Fist; to strike or block with the hand
- Do The way of, or art.
Put this together and TaeKwonDo means: "The art of Kicking and Punching" or "The art of unarmed combat".