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Deconstructing Taekwon-Do

What’s the Purpose of Step Sparring in Taekwon-Do?

What’s the Purpose of Step Sparring in Taekwon-Do?

Have you ever found yourself wondering why step sparring exists? What’s the point? It’s highly formalized and like no other type of sparring that we do. It’s nothing like sport sparring or an actual self-defence scenario. A lot of people…
How To: Outward Knife-Hand Strike

How To: Outward Knife-Hand Strike

The outward knife-hand strike is a pretty simple technique, really. It’s your basic martial arts “chop” to the side. You can use an outward knife-hand to target the middle or high sections (the body or the head). It’s usually performed…
Beware of Martial Arts Contracts

Beware of Martial Arts Contracts

Does your martial arts club use contracts to lock in students’ tuition rates, guaranteeing they’ll pay the same rate for one, two or three years? Or are you looking for a club for you or your kids and found that…
How To: Forearm and Knife-Hand Rising Blocks

How To: Forearm and Knife-Hand Rising Blocks

Conventional martial arts wisdom says that a forearm risking block is used to block and deflect a downward attack. In the Encyclopedia of Taekwon-Do, General Choi says that it can also be used to block a weapon, or even a…
Karate’s Niju Kun and Its Influence on Taekwon-Do

Karate’s Niju Kun and Its Influence on Taekwon-Do

A while back, I theorized that taekwon-do’s student oath may have been heavily influenced by the dojo kun, a set of five training hall rules used by many karate clubs. Since then, I’ve been stewing on another karate list. In…
Sine Wave in Taekwon-Do: That Funny Bouncing

Sine Wave in Taekwon-Do: That Funny Bouncing

Sine wave is one of the defining features of Ch’ang Hon (ITF) taekwon-do. General Choi introduced sine wave in the 1980s, in large part to help make his taekwon-do stand out even more from other martial arts. (And, rumour has…
Lessons from a Street Fight

Lessons from a Street Fight

The most surreal part of seeing a man get soccer kicked in the head as he lies on the ground is the sound. It’s like slapping a half-frozen steak. That sound shouldn’t emanate from a human head.
Stepping Outside Your Comfort Zone: Cross-Training for Taekwon-Do

Stepping Outside Your Comfort Zone: Cross-Training for Taekwon-Do

Did you know that doing another activity besides taekwon-do—or even another martial art—can take your game to the next level? That’s the beauty of cross-training. Cross-training means doing another sport or activity outside of the one that you usually practice,…
How To: Continuous Motion

How To: Continuous Motion

Anyone above the rank of yellow stripe in Ch’ang Hon taekwon-do knows what continuous motion is. It’s that weird motion in the latter half of Dan-Gun tul. But General Choi didn’t define continuous motion in the Encyclopedia of Taekwon-Do, so…