History Of Taekwondo


Writer: Seyed Ehsan Pirayesh

Taekwondo is the name of a martial art that nowadays known as a modern sport across the world  during several passed centuries this sport widely developed. Its outstanding point is using martial style which involving unarmed hand and feet against the opponents. Undoubtedly this martial art originated in Korea, has the root in customs geography and political affairs related to different periods of Korean history. The first recognized social life in Korea belongs to 2333 B.C of which its fable promoter TANGON founded old Korea in Asadal. As history of other nations the plain social life gradually changed to tribal life and then formed as the state and country.


Historical documents shows that about 2000 years ago in the said tribal states, people used to give sacrifices to their sky gods in celebrations comply with dancing and playing music. Evolution of Taekwondo started in three-kingship dynasty in Korea. The first one was KOGURYO who governing in TANGO.

A painting found as an ancient work of this period on the tomb of Meung Chung shows the fighting between two young persons in Taekwondo and some women were dancing in a group. During the reign of Paeche, Korean second majesty, in south-west  of Korean peninsula and in the Land of Pachin River, the people engaged in trading with China and therefore the civilization was transformed to Japan through sea.Ordinary stories of this period (Cholapokado) describe that how "Pionjy Duri" a kind of sand throwing game and "Sopak Hai" an old form of Taekwondo appeared in different places. Historical documents show that people interested to compete in horse-race, shooting and Sirum that was a kind of wrestling.


The reign of Silla,(Korean third majesty), 7th  had considerable effects on development of Korean martial arts in 7th A.C century . This reign was located in southeast separated part of Korean peninsula. But Silla unified those separated parts by overcoming to two other reigns . Supporter of national power of Silla was the only fighting system named "HURANGDO".

 Hurangdo included the noble youths who scarifies themselves for learning moral, ethics and self-discipline. during next centuries, Silla leveled the way for Koguryo, new dynasty, which founded by Tangon in 918 A.D. He tried to expand his lands from north and therefore found a little success in its intention and repelled the invasion of Korean's enemies with Taekwondo, which called Sobak-Do. So Taekwondo was considered as a weapon for Koreans. A historical war shows that in the invasion of Japanese about 700 unarmed volunteer soldiers from Kum San Area combated with the enemies by using techniques of Taekwondo.


Taekwondo in literary means the art of self-defense by using unarmed hands and feet. Despite the fact that martial art is mostly known as using feet in the public but it is a complete system without any defaults. Taekwondo passed lots of ups and downs in the former century. On April 1955 the word "Taekwondo" were registered for the Korean martial arts in a meeting in Korea and this name was recognized by the related authorities. For publicizing and introducing modern Taekwondo, we could not overlook the important endeavors of General Choi, Hong H, the founder of Taekwondo.

In 1965 Korean Taekwondo Association was created and in 1966 International Taekwondo Federation was established in Korea and in 1973 world Taekwondo Federation (WTF) was formed. With support of Korean officials Then these two federations started to compete with each other and tried to introduce itself so that could obtain the most international supports. ITF and WTF both tried to make more significant the forms and the philosophy of their exercises respectively based on support of being popular and gaining international recognition. WTF pays special attention upon fighting and competition, whereas ITF emphasizes the ethical and philosophical aspects of Taekwondo. In 1980 Olympic International Committee recognized W.T.F through a meeting in Moscow. Taekwondo Pomsee was displayed in Olympic in a ceremonial way in 1988 & 1992. it is also introduced as an Olympic complete sport in 1994 and officially entered to Olympic in 2000. And thereafter selected Taekwondo players of the world competed with each other in Athena Olympic (2004) and Pekin Olympic (2008).