Olympic Sports: Tae Kwon Do a Martial Arts Full of History [VIDEO]
ST. CLOUD -- They are many different types of martial arts, that after a while it becomes hard to distinguish them. One thing that stands out from Tae Kwon Do is the country origin and the style.
Tae Kwon Do is a Korean martial art that involves spinning kicks and jumping kicks.
It was first introduced as a demonstration sport in the Olympics in 1988 however, the following year it was finally recognized as a full medal sport.
Evolution Tae Kwon Do Fifth Degree Master Robert Opheim says, despite Tae Kwon Do being an Olympic sport, a misconception that people assume is that what they see in the Olympics is what Tae Kwon Do is.
However, that's not true what you will see in the Olympics is the sports side of Tae Kwon Do. A sport once referred to as Tai Chi.
"The history was that it was named Tai Chi. Which is a competition that was done between villages and cities back in the ancient times. Where they would actually have their hands behind their back. They would only be able to use their legs to tag their opponent." says Opheim.
Now you won't be seeing opponents hands tied behind their back in the Olympics. However, what you will see is that opponents are allowed to do kicks to the body, head, and punches.
In order for judges to track the scores, the fighters wear a chest protector that has a sensor to measure how hard one gets hit. For someone to score a point, one must have a solid hit rather than a light hit.
"They are looking for kicks to the body. How those will be scored is, if it's a regular straight kick that makes contact that will count as one point but, they get extra points if they do dynamic stuff. So if it's a turning kick they will get extra points as well as earn extra points if they hit the head. The head is a hard part to hit ,so that's extra points. They can also win by a knockout"
If you are sitting at home, wondering if you should give this a try? Well, you are in luck. Evolution Tae Kwon Do in St. Cloud offers one free class for your first time. They have classes ranging from the age of four and up in six different locations.
Master Opheim says this is a sports anyone can try. Being overweight or thinking your not as flexible is not a problem. It is still possible to learn and enjoy the sport.
To find out more about the classes visit their website Evolution Tae Kwon Do.