WHAT IS TAE KWON DO?

THE ART
Tae Kwon Do is derived from several martial arts, with its main influence being Korean 'Tae-Kyon Kick Fighting' and Japanese Karate. Literally translated , 'Tae' is to kick or smash with the feet, 'Kwon' means to intercept or strike with the hand and 'Do' is the way or the art. Thus, Tae Kwon Do is the use of the hands and feet to swiftly overcome an attacker.
Tae Kwon Do is generally recognised as one of the most systematic and scientific Korean traditional martial arts, which teaches more than mere physical fighting skills. It is a discipline which shows ways of enhancing our spirit and life through training our body and mind. It is also a modern sport that has gained an international reputation, and stands among the official games in the Olympics.

THE TENETS OF TAE KWON-DO
Taekwon-Do aims to achieve Courtesy, Integrity, Perseverance, Self-Control and Indomitable Spirit.
These tenets form the basis of the ethical roots of Tae Kwon do, and are based on an ancient honour-code practised by the Hwarang. See the History section for more on the Hwarang.

THE SPORT: (note: Competition Tae Kwon Do is purely optional). Competition Tae Kwon Do is split into two sections:

SPARRING
All matches are semi-contact with full safety equipment worn to avoid any risk of injury. The pace is fast and furious. It has been described as the most visually breath-taking sport since Chariot Racing! Winners are decided from a point system with referees constantly monitoring the bout to keep strict control on contact.

PATTERNS
Concentration, technique, skill, balance, dynamics and elegance are just a few requirements needed to perform these sequences of prearranged movements against imaginary opponents

YOU AND TAE KWON DO

TOTAL FITNESS IN BODY AND MIND
In Tae Kwon Do you'll learn to stretch and exercise nearly every muscle group in your body. That aspect alone distinguishes the sport from most others. But emphasis on improved concentration, stamina and self-control is what really sets Tae Kwon Do apart from other disciplines. To develop those skills, you'll exercise your mind at least as much as your body. Naturally, the positive effects of that exercise will carry over into other areas of your life too.
From another perspective, Tae Kwon Do can be characterized by unity: the unity of body, mind, and life. When you do Tae Kwon Do, you should clear and focus your mind, and synchronise it with your movements, and extend this harmony to your life and society. This is how in Tae Kwon Do the principle of physical movements, the principle of mind training, and the principle of life become one and the same.

MEN
Tae Kwon Do will improve your fitness, flexibility and most of all, your confidence. It will help to control or channel your aggression - should the need arise. Right from the first lesson you will start developing a whole new range of skills and capabilities with the opportunity to realise self-achievement.

WOMEN
In these days of increasing violent attacks on women, it has now, more than ever, become necessary for women to be prepared to protect themselves. More and more women are turning to the martial arts for protection and Tae Kwon Do can certainly provide this. It is a superb form of self-defence and also a great way to keep fit and trim. Tae Kwon Do is safe, practical and most of all - enjoyable, so why not give it a try ?

CHILDREN
Children who acquire self-confidence at an early age are far more likely to succeed in their adult ambitions. Tae Kwon Do is arguably the best method of instilling confidence in children and at the same emphasises the importance of respect and discipline. As a result of the fast and exciting nature of Tae Kwon Do there are thousands of children participating throughout the U.K.,and there are millions worldwide.

TAGB
The Tae Kwon Do Association of Great Britain (TAGB) is a nationally recognised Tae Kwon Do organisation in this country. It was formed in 1983 and has since become the founding member of the British Tae Kwon Do Council (BTC) which is recognised by the United Kingdom Sports Council ( now known as UK Sport ).

The T.A.G.B. is the world's largest single martial arts organisation. With nearly 20,000 members and over 450 clubs you are guaranteed certificated, experienced instructors, a carefully worked-out teaching syllabus and the high standards Tae Kwon Do students all over the country have come to expect. Most towns throughout Great Britain have their own T.A.G.B. Club, so if you move away you can be sure of receiving the same quality of instruction. After several years of training, all T.A.G.B. instructors undergo both written examinations and extensive practical assessments to gain their qualifications.
With clubs throughout the country the TAGB is the ideal organisation for learning a martial art that has evolved through a 3,000 year history to become the newest Olympic sport.