What is International Taekwon-Do? It is a martial art, but like most martial arts it's not about fighting.
The encyclopaedia of Taekwon-Do, written by the founder, General Choi Hong Hi, states:
"The utmost purpose of Taekwon-Do is to eliminate fighting by discouraging the stronger’s oppression of the weaker with a power that must be based on humanity, justice, morality, wisdom, and faith, thus helping to build a better and more peaceful world.”
General Choi emphasised the importance of mental conditioning, and he defined a moral code for Taekwon-Do students with the Tenets of Taekwon-Do and the Student Oath. Read more on Taekwon-Do rules and etiquette »
How is International Taekwon-Do different from other martial arts? The encyclopaedia of Taekwon-Do also states:
“… Taekwon-Do is a version of unarmed combat designed for the purpose of self-defence. It is more than just that, however.
This quote highlights two important features of International Taekwon-Do: first, how it differs from other martial arts, and secondly, the importance of moral development in International Taekwon-Do.
It is its scientific foundation that separates International Taekwon-Do from other martial arts. Its techniques are founded in an understanding of human anatomy and Newtonian physics. Power is generated by relaxing muscles during movements to maximise acceleration, and tensed suddenly at the conclusion of movements to maximise the concentration of force.