Get a Kick Out of Spare Time
Since I was very young, I had a strange fascination with martial arts. I would see actors in movies or on television doing something amazing, and want to be just like them. Three years ago, I decided to look into joining a martial arts class, so I asked around and found out that there were two different choices within a reasonable distance from my home, and that they both taught different versions of the same art. After much deliberation, I chose to attend the closer of the two classes because I knew a few people who were involved there.
Taekwondo (TKD) is a Korean martial art that means "the way of the hand and foot." As it is known today, Taekwondo evolved from Tae Kyon, a style of martial arts that dates back to the first century B.C. The modern variation of Taekwondo became dominant in 1945 after World War II when Korean power was restored to what was Japanese occupied Korea.
Koreans did not want Japanese influences to remain in their martial arts, and began to form martial arts schools that combined different Korean styles into a single martial art that became the national form of self defense and exercise. In 1965, the name Taekwondo was made official to describe the new Korean martial art. Taekwondo was brought to America shortly after this. Though the Koreans sought to remove all Japanese influence from their new martial art, many critics see Taekwondo as Tae Kyon and Shotokan (a Japanese style) mixed together. In 1972 the Kukkiwon, the world taekwondo headquarters was completed in Seoul, South Korea. In the next 20-30 years, Taekwondo developed into many style variations that it is today.
The style that I practice, Chang Moo Kwon, is recognized by...