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Taekwon-do is a traditional Korean martial art with roots in Japanese karate and Chinese martial arts. It's well known for its high kicks, spinning jumps and explosive power. And if you've ever watched a Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan or Chuck Norris movie, you've probably seen some of these very moves in action. But there is much more to Taekwon-do than movie scenes and special effects. Taekwon-do has a rich history and a thriving presence in today's world.
Taekwon-do first started out as several different martial arts that were practiced in schools across Korea after World War II. Many of the instructors had studied martial arts in Japan during the Japanese occupation of Korea, and they brought that Japanese influence to their own schools. During a military martial arts demonstration in 1952, the South Korean president was so impressed by what he saw of this new art that he urged the different schools and masters to merge their styles. Thus, Taekwon-do was born and grew into the martial art it is today.
Taekwon-do is extremely popular across South Korea and around the world. Not only is it the national sport of South Korea, but it has even earned its place as an official Olympic game. Taekwon-do is also immensely popular in the U.S., with hundreds of schools across the nation. It's especially well-suited for children who want to begin learning martial arts from a young age. And it's also the first choice for people who want to learn self-defense while improving their physical fitness at the same time. So what makes Taekwon-do a favorite choice for kids and adults alike?
One clue to its popularity lies in the meaning of its name. The words "tae", "kwon" and "do" mean stomp, fist and discipline. And each of these words really is an apt description of this martial art. Students of Taekwon-do learn techniques that provide them with skills of strength, self-defense, and focus. In the Taekwon-do classroom or dojang, students learn moves from seasoned instructors and perform their drills individually or in pairs. As they progress, they typically earn different colored belts that indicate their seniority or rank. Competitions held at the national and international level give students a chance to represent their schools and showcase their skills.
Another reason that students young and old enjoy learning Taekwon-do is because it provides so many benefits beyond self-defense. Some of the immediate benefits that students often see as they begin their training are increased dexterity, improved balance and more stamina. Many of the spinning kicks and jumps that students learn in Taekwon-do also train them to have incredible speed and agility. And it doesn't stop with physical benefits.
Taekwon-do students also learn to discipline their minds, respect each other and their instructors, and feel greater confidence about themselves and their abilities. These mental skills translate to every aspect of work, school, and life. Children feel greater confidence in social situations and jump at opportunities to participate in sports and physical fitness. And adults feel that same sense of confidence and accomplishment as they navigate life at home and in the workplace.
When it comes to choosing an activity that exercises your brain as well as your mind, that pushes you to explore your limits and expand your abilities, and that brings out the best in you and your fellow classmates, then Taekwon-do is a clear choice. At Silver Lining Taekwon-do, we have many different fitness and martial arts programs to choose from. But most importantly, our friendly, knowledgeable instructors want to work with you to help you choose the program that's best for you. Contact us today if you'd like to learn more.
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