Practical Karate Volume 1 Fundamentals O: Fundamentals of Self-Defense: 001

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While organizations such as ITF or Kukkiwon define the general style of Taekwondo, individual clubs and schools tend to tailor their Taekwondo practices. Although each Taekwondo club or school is different, a student typically takes part in most or all of the following: [20]. Though weapons training is not a formal part of most Taekwondo federation curricula, individual schools will often incorporate additional training with staffs , knives, sticks, etc.

White uniforms are considered the traditional color and are usually encouraged for use at formal ceremonies such as belt tests and promotions. Colored uniforms are often reserved for special teams such as demonstration teams or leadership teams or higher-level instructors. There are at least three major styles of dobok , with the most obvious differences being in the style of jacket:. The belt color and any insignia thereon indicate the student's rank. Different clubs and schools use different color schemes for belts.

In general, the darker the color, the higher the rank. Taekwondo is traditionally performed in bare feet, although martial arts training shoes may sometimes be worn. When sparring, padded equipment is usually worn.


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In the ITF tradition, typically only the hands and feet are padded. For this reason, ITF sparring often employs only light-contact sparring. Specifically, the term dojang refers to the area within the school in which martial arts instruction takes place; the word dojang is sometimes translated as gymnasium. In common usage, the term dojang is often used to refer to the school as a whole. Modern dojangs often incorporate padded flooring, often incorporating red-and-blue patterns in the flooring to reflect the colors of the taegeuk symbol.

Some dojangs have wooden flooring instead. The dojang is usually decorated with items such as flags, banners, belts, instructional materials, and traditional Korean calligraphy. There are a number of major Taekwondo styles as well as a few niche styles.

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Most styles are associated with a governing body or federation that defines the style. The major technical differences among Taekwondo styles and organizations generally revolve around:. The term traditional Taekwondo typically refers to martial arts practised in Korea during the s and s by the nine original kwans , or martial arts schools, after the conclusion of the Japanese occupation of Korea at the end of World War II.

The term Taekwondo had not yet been coined, and in reality, each of the nine original kwans practised its own style of martial art. As part of the unification process, The Korea Taekwondo Association KTA was formed through a collaborative effort by representatives from all the kwans, and the work began on a common curriculum, which eventually resulted in the Kukkiwon and the Kukki Style of Taekwondo.

The original kwans that formed KTA continues to exist today, but as independent fraternal membership organizations that support the World Taekwondo and Kukkiwon. The kwans also function as a channel for the issuing of Kukkiwon dan and poom certification black belt ranks for their members. The official curriculum of those kwans that joined the unification is that of the Kukkiwon, with the notable exception of half the Oh Do Kwan which joined the ITF instead and therefore uses the Chan Hon curriculum. Likewise, the ITF itself split in and again in into three separate federations, headquartered in Austria, the United Kingdom, and Spain respectively.

Choi defined 24 Chang Hon tul. The names and symbolism of the Chang Hon tul refer to elements of Korean history , culture and religious philosophy. Some ITF schools adopt the sine wave style, while others do not. Essentially all ITF schools do, however, use the patterns tul defined in the Encyclopedia, with some exceptions related to the forms Juche and Ko-Dang.

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In , all the spin-offs were reunited under the umbrella of ATA International. In Jhoon Rhee relocated to the United States and established a chain of martial arts schools primarily in the Washington, D. Rhee went on to develop his own style of Taekwondo called Jhoon Rhee-style Taekwondo, incorporating elements of both traditional and ITF-style Taekwondo as well as original elements.

Under the sponsorship of the South Korean government's Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism the Kukkiwon became the new national academy for Taekwondo, thereby establishing a new "unified" style of Taekwondo. For this reason, the Kukkiwon-defined style of Taekwondo is sometimes referred to as Sport-style Taekwondo, Olympic-style Taekwondo, or WT-style Taekwondo, but the style itself is defined by the Kukkiwon, not by the WT, and the WT competition ruleset itself only allows the use of a very small number of the total number of techniques included in the style.

The color belts range from white to junior black belt half black, half red. The order and colours used may vary between schools, but a common order is white, yellow, green, blue, red, black. However, other variations with a higher number of colours is also commonly seen.

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A usual practice, when employing only four coloured belts, is to stay at each belt color for the duration of two gup ranks, making a total of eight gup ranks between white belt and 1st. In order to make a visual difference between the first and second gup rank of given belt color, a stripe in the same color as the next belt color is added to the second cup rank. In Kukki-style Taekwondo, the word used for "forms" is poomsae. In the KTA established a new set of forms called the Palgwae poomsae, named after the eight trigrams of the I Ching.

In however after additional kwans had joined the KTA , the KTA and Kukkiwon adopted a new set of color-belt forms instead, called the Taegeuk poomsae. Black belt forms are called yudanja poomsae.

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While ITF-style forms refer to key elements of Korean history, Kukki-style forms refer instead to elements of sino-Korean philosophy such as the I Ching and the taegeuk. WT-sanctioned tournaments allow any person, regardless of school affiliation or martial arts style, to compete in WT events as long as he or she is a member of the WT Member National Association in his or her nation; this allows essentially anyone to compete in WT-sanctioned competitions. Essentially this can be considered a variation of ITF-style.

Chun Kuk Do shares many techniques, forms and names with Tang Soo Do and Taekwondo, and so can be considered a variation of traditional Taekwondo.

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Additionally, there are hybrid martial arts that combine Taekwondo with other styles. These include:. Three Korean terms may be used with reference to Taekwondo forms or patterns. These forms are equivalent to kata in karate. A hyeong is a systematic, prearranged sequence of martial techniques that is performed either with or without the use of a weapon. In dojangs Taekwondo training gymnasiums hyeong are used primarily as a form of interval training that is useful in developing mushin , proper kinetics and mental and physical fortitude.

Hyeong may resemble combat, but are artistically non-combative and woven together so as to be an effective conditioning tool.

One's aptitude for a particular hyeong may be evaluated in competition. In such competitions, hyeong are evaluated by a panel of judges who base the score on many factors including energy, precision, speed, and control. In Western competitions, there are two general classes of hyeong: creative and standard. Creative hyeong are created by the performer and are generally acrobatic in nature and do not necessarily reflect the kinetic principles intrinsic in any martial system.

Even within a single association, different schools in the association may use slightly different variations on the forms or use different names for the same form especially in older styles of Taekwondo. This is especially true for beginner forms, which tend to be less standardized than mainstream forms.

Self-Defense Basics: Lesson 1 - Make Yourself Comfortable!

Teaching Manual [33]. Taekwondo ranks vary from style to style and are not standardized. Typically, these ranks are separated into "junior" and "senior" sections, colloquially referred to as "color belts" and "black belts":. Some styles incorporate an additional rank between the geup and dan levels, called the "bo-dan" rank—essentially, a candidate rank for black belt promotion. At age 15, their poom rank is considered to transition to equivalent dan rank automatically. To advance from one rank to the next, students typically complete promotion tests in which they demonstrate their proficiency in the various aspects of the art before their teacher or a panel of judges.

Promotion tests vary from school to school, but may include such elements as the execution of patterns, which combine various techniques in specific sequences; the breaking of boards to demonstrate the ability to use techniques with both power and control; sparring and self-defense to demonstrate the practical application and control of techniques; physical fitness usually with push-ups and sit-ups; and answering questions on terminology, concepts, and history to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the art. For higher dan tests, students are sometimes required to take a written test or submit a research paper in addition to taking the practical test.

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Promotion from one geup to the next can proceed rapidly in some schools since schools often allow geup promotions every two, three, or four months.