Did You Know This Sport is a Part of the Olympics?8th Aug 2016 |
Taekwondo is a fairly recent addition to the Olympic Games. It was a demonstration sport in Seoul in 1988, but it wasn’t until 2000 that it became a full Olympic sport. There are many practitioners in the United Kingdom, but it hasn’t been the type of event that attracts the biggest TV-audiences. Maybe you should give it a chance?
With the independence of the Korean peninsula from Japan after the second world war, many schools of martial arts opened in different cities. Seoul became especially important, and it’s from here taekwondo is considered to originate. Instructors who had studied martial arts in Japan combined this with different Chinese martial arts and local Korean tradition, and developed what would become taekwondo. The sport gained a big international following from the 1970’s onward.
The Korean elements that’s been incorporated in taekwondo are old. But contrary to popular belief, taekwondo is not an old Korean form of martial art. The fact that it’s so modern is why it’s considered a South Korean martial art, not a Pan-Korean one. Taekwondo is also practiced to a very large extent in North Korea, but that variation is quite different from the Olympic form of taekwondo. This is due to the isolated development of the sport in the two countries.
Together with the Japanese sport judo, taekwondo is the only Asian martial art that is a part of the Olympic Games. But it’s more than just a sport; It carries with it a whole philosophical way of thinking that all practitioners are supposed to incorporate. This philosophy includes showing great respect for authorities and trainers and working in the service of freedom and justice, and to work towards creating a more peaceful world. Yin and Yang has a central place in taekwondo philosophy.