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All through life, you have to take tests to show your ability and to prove to yourself and in most cases be rewarded for it. Learning a martial art is no different, you learn take tests and get rewarded for it, whether it is belt recognition, a trophy or just pure self-satisfaction.

What makes Tae Kwon-Do different from many other martial arts is that you have to prove yourself in more ways than one in order to progress. As well as physical capability, you are expected to learn about the history of Tae Kwon-Do, its terminology, the theory of power and why you do the things the way you are taught.

These notes have been produced to help the student study theory for the purpose of gradings as well as providing a basic general knowledge of the martial art.

Tae Kwon-Do is a constant learning process no matter which Grade is attained.

An old proverb says that even heaven cannot make a diligent worker poor. However, in Taekwon-Do, diligence or intensive training alone does not produce quality techniques. On the contrary, instructions from a false or unqualified instructor would be worse than not being taught at all because unscientific movements not only reduce the power but require a tremendous amount of time to correct. On the other hand, under the proper guidance of a competent instructor, a student who trains earnestly with dedication will learn the true techniques of Taekwon-Do in a comparatively short period of time with less effort.

Students should keep in mind the following secrets:
1) To study the theory of power thoroughly.
2) To understand the purpose and method of each movement clearly.
3) To bring the action of eyes, hands, feet and breath into one single coordinated action.
4) To choose the appropriate attacking tool for each vital spot.
5) To become familiar with the correct angle and distance for attack and defence.
6) Keep both the arms and legs bent slightly while movement is in motion.
7) All movements must begin with a backward motion with very few exceptions. However, once the movement is in motion it should not be stopped before reaching the target.
8) To create a sine wave during the movement by utilizing the knee spring properly.
9) To exhale briefly at the moment of each blow excepting a connecting motion.


Reproduced from "Taekwon-Do" (The Korean Art of Self Defense) also known as The Condensed Encyclopedia.
Copyright 1988, 1991, 1992, 1995, 1999 General Choi, Hong Hi.


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