Taekwondo is an approach to the martial arts, that teaches more than the physical skills of fighting. It is a discipline that instills ways of enhancing our spirit and life through physically training our body and mind. Taekwondo has become a worldwide sport that has ascertained an international reputation, and is among one of the Olympic games.
WHAT IS THE MEANING OF TAE KWON DO?
Taekwondo: The Name Says It All
Taekwondo is an ancient Korean martial art which translates to the way of kicking feed and striking hands.
“Tae” refers to feet or lower body, everything below the belt, particularly the legs for running, jumping, strength, power, spinning, and kicking.
“Kwon” refers to the torso and is concerned with everything done with the arms and hands for striking and blocking.
“Do” means the way and refers to the mind which in turn governs the body.
Together, “Tae Kwon Do” form a harmony of mind and body.
Taekwondo is the Korean martial art developed nearly two thousand years ago. The name “Taekwondo” translates literally to the way of kicking fee and striking hands. Today, it is practiced by millions of people worldwide and is one of only two martial art styles to be recognized by the International Olympic Committee as an official sport at the Olympic Games.
Taekwondo utilizes both mental and physical development, which provides a setting for emotional well-being free from stress and fear, a complete system of self-defense, and a popular sport. Taekwondo is for any person, young or old, male of female, big or small, who wishes to master an art.
But Taekwondo is different from many oriental martial arts in three ways:
1. First, physically it is very dynamic with active movements that utilize an assortment of foot skills.
2. Second, the aim is to have the physical elements and movement blend with the students life as a whole not to be separate.
3. Third, it possesses dynamic poomsae (see poomsae) from another perspective. Taekwondo can be characterized by unity: the unity of body, mind and life, and the unity of the poomsae and confrontation. When you learn Taekwondo, you should make your mind peaceful and synchronize your mind with your moves, and grow this harmony to your life and society. This is how the principle of the physical moves, the principal of training ones mind, and the principle of life becomes whole.
Taekwondo is an attitude about life, just like any other aspect of one’s life like having a job, raising a family, or fighting for something in which you believe in. What makes Taekwondo different from these is that it is an activity for survival in extremely important situations in one’s life. One must always overcome the enemy that is trying to cause harm to you.
But overcoming your opponent isn’t enough to guarantee one’s safety, because the enemy may recuperate and attempt to assault you again. In addition, there may be many other opponents than the one that was just overcome. One can’t ever truly feel safe unless that person obtains a continued sense of peace. To internalize this concrete or lasting sense of peace, one needs wholeness. This is the aim of Taekwondo. Otherwise Taekwondo would be no different from any other street-fighting skill.
Taekwondo pursues harmonious growth and improvements in ones life through it’s unique activities. This is why one could say Taekwondo is a way of life. To ultimately enable ourselves to lead more valueble lives, we would do well by obtaining the guiding principles entrenched in Taekwondo.