What is Tae Kwon Do?
Tae Kwon Do is a modern martial art, characterized by it’s fast, high and spinning kicks. There are multiple interpretations of the name Tae Kwon Do. Tae Kwon Do is often translated as 'the way of hand and foot'. My definition of the name Tae Kwon Do is:
- Tae= 'to strike or block with the foot' or 'to kick', it also means 'jump.'
- Kwon= 'Fist', 'to strike or block with hand.'
- Do= 'The way of' or 'art.'
Put this together and Tae Kwon Do means: "The art of Kicking and Punching" or "The art of unarmed combat." The sport was founded in Korea, and is one of the most popular modern martial arts.
FIVE TENETS OF TAEKWONDO : In Tae Kwon Do there are five tenets. The action and behavior of the Tae Kwon Do practitioner are expected to be in accordance with these rules and with all their implications. These tenets are regarded as a must as they explain and summarize the entire teaching of Tae Kwon Do.
Courtesy (Ye-Ui). Courtesy in a broader sense is kindness, humility, good manners, politeness, and respect.
Integrity (Yom-Chi). Integrity generally speaking, is honesty, straight dealing, purity, moral soundness, and uprightness. To have integrity means to be honest with everyone and with yourself at all times.
Perseverance (In-Nae). Perseverance is persistence, a steadfast pursuit of and an understanding of the aim, continuation in the practice of Tae Kwon Do regardless of the amount of obstacles, hindering circumstances, difficulties, or occasional "let downs" which are only temporary situations. The strong will to hold on, regardless of obstacles. Loyalty.
Self-control (Guk-Gi). Self-control is a double edged sword: on the one hand, it is the physical control with regard to motions, precision of execution, prevention of unnecessary injuries (as opposed to acting wildly) or killing, due to lack of control. Experience is the best teacher, but all the physical reactions are based on the psychological make-up, maturity, and moral, ethical, and religious codes. Emotions are usually involved, to a certain degree, in the majority of situations, hence the need for emotional self control. The degree of controlling the particularly strong emotions such as love, hate, anger, surprise, joy, sadness, etc., show the level of achievement of each practitioner of Tae Kwon Do. Emotions should be governed by a strong and conscious reason and aided by experience in principles. The success of application of this tenet in practical everyday life should result in creating the indomitable spirit.
Indomitable Spirit (Baekjul-Bool Gool). Indomitable means unconquerable, unbreakable, unquenchable. To put it simply, it means that one has such strong unshakeable beliefs and principles that even sacrificing the most precious possession one has, one's own life, is not too high a price to pay in defending them.
What should I wear for my first class?
Bring a top and pants that are comfortable and easy to move in. As well as a waterbottle.
There are many different types of equipment used by various martial art styles. All equipment and Uniforms must be ordered by Evolution Tae Kwon Do. This ensures the proper style, quality, and approved equipment used by Evolution Tae Kwon Do.
For the first month students will wear clothes that they are comfortable working out in. After one month a student will test for their uniform. Uniforms cost $40.00 and are ordered through the instructor.
What is the structure of the class?
The class starts out with a warm-up that involves: stretching, push-ups, jumping jacks, ect. After the warm up students will then get a quick water break and bathroom break. After the break students will come back to the classroom to do techniques (kicking, pattern, board breaking, hand techniques and self-defense if required) for their belt test until class is over. If the students are well behaved we will sometimes do a fun game at the end of class.
Students earn stripes for each of their techniques that they will be tested on. Once they have all their stripes they will recieve a testing letter letting them know when their test will be. This is done to ensure everone is ready for their test when it comes around because all kids learn at a different pace.
What is a belt for?
Belts are goals that are set for students to meet on their road to Tae Kwon Do training and personal improvement. To obtain the first belts, the goals are more easily met and involve more help from the instructor. Techniques are fairly simple early on and increase in difficulty as the students’ progress. Each student will progress at the speed that is equal to his or her personal abilities. There are ten belts, or goals in the sequence starting with white on up to the black belt -- The ultimate goal.
What is a Black Belt?
A Junior Black Belt (Poom) or Adult Black Belt (Dan) is a student recognized for their commitment to Tae Kwon Do who has achieved a high level of proficiency and knowledge in the art of kicking and punching. This proficiency includes speed, accuracy, strength, and thorough knowledge of a large amount of techniques, theory and application, as well as information and history. A Black Belt is worn by a person who possesses the qualities of courtesy, integrity, self-control, perseverance and indomitable spirit in addition to demonstration a knowledge and understanding of the aspects of Tae Kwon Do as presented to them by their instructor.
Tournaments are by invitation only. Flyers will be handed out in class or emailed. Tournaments are NOT required for a student to advance in rank. Tournaments are an extracurricular activity that one can take part in at their own expense.
Are students required to compete in Tournaments?
It is not required.
My child is not very athletic. Can they still benefit from Tae Kwon Do?
Certainly. We teach them skills that will help with their coordination, flexibility and strength. We make sure that the activities we assign are appropriate for the child’s athletic level.
How fit do I have to be to take an adult class?
We have people of almost all levels of fitness attend our classes. Your level of fitness is not that important a factor because we work on improving your level, no matter where you are in terms of physical fitness.
Why learn Korean?
Korean is the universal language of Tae Kwon Do. It is also fun for the students to learn words in another language. It also prepares students for competition, as all competition and commands in the sport arena are conducted and given in Korean. Students could go to any Tae Kwon Do training center in the world and understand the training. Learning and using Korean is also very crucial to know in the event that other Masters, Grand Masters or even the Great Grand Master should make a visit to our gym. Instructors from Korea, naturally, conduct their classes, training, and commands in Korean and are always impressed when American students understand them.
Why are students required to Bow?
Bowing is a tradition in Korea used when entering or leaving the gym. It is also used when asking a question of an instructor or entering the gym in which higher ranks and black belts are present. It is a sign of respect for their experience, knowledge and commitment to Tae Kwon Do. It is also out of respect for the gym, the ranks, and the instructors. It is similar to an American handshake. When you meet someone it is proper etiquette to shake their hand. In Korea, and especially Tae Kwon Do, it is proper to greet people in this way each time they meet. This method of recognizing authority, experience, and greater knowledge helps to strengthen a student's respect for authority in and out of the gym whether it is parents, teachers, police, adults or other persons of stature. It also fosters a sense of respect for the training, the goals, and the person they aspire to become.