An umbrella term for Korean martial arts styles united in the 1950s. Some schools trace a heritage through one of the more narrowly defined "kwans" that existed before the unification. Drawing from a mixture of influences, it is best known for its explosive kicks and strikes. Most similar to karate, but tends to be less linear and more motive. A good school will do sparring (rule based, but hardens the body), breaking (accuracy), and self-defense exercises.

Unfortunately, in recent times, Tae Kwon Do's loose definition and the willingness of many to use it as mere training for Olympic-style Sparring has resulted in many poorly run schools.

As with any martial art, there are advantages and disadvantages; no single style is complete. And remember it the skill lies in the school and the artist, not the style.
No, I can't go to the prom after-party; I have a four-hour long check-up in Tae Kwon Do tomorrow.
by Calabrino L November 09, 2007
A martial art, that when practiced correctly, requires vigorous and brutal exercise, dedication, and physical well-being. It not only teaches a high concentration of kicks and blocks with a few hand attacks, but it focuses incredibly on respect, honor, sacrifice, honesty, compassion, focus, and many other philosophies that should be remembered every day. Taekwondo is a martial art that could eliminate most others not only because of it's technique, but the physical condition and mental well-being it requires.
I have practiced Taekwondo for years, and am physically and mentally well. I know how to fight, and also when to fight. My combat skills are surpassed only by my respect for my fellow men and women.
by TKDteacher December 04, 2010
a martial art that has the highest concentration of kicks compared to any other martial arts available today (over 100). it destroys kickboxing and muay thai and teaches you self discipline and respect not only in your training but in everyday life. it is extremely fitness orientated, and requires immense amounts of dedication to succeed. it is for all races and religions as well as sex and age. once you reach your higher belts you are trained so well you can punch through a brick wall in one single blow (or 9 bricks piled on top of each other). its worth trying it out because most people get fucked up by taekwondo students and have to bad mouth it by saying its weak. if its so weak then how am i able to stop a mans heart by throwing a single punch??

*Taekwondo Guy*: <tornado kicks him in the head>

*KICKBOXER*: <out cold and dragged to hospital>
by TKDSTudEnt March 27, 2008
martial art involving mostly kicking. It utilizes the 2nd of the four main ranges of fighting, which are:
1) Too far to contact opponent
2) In kicking range, some punching
3) Elbow/knee range
4) Groundfighting
As with all martial arts, it has its advantages and disadvantages.
Someone who has their knee kicked in so they cant walk, they probably wont get close enough to punch you
People who think tae-kwon-do is completely useless are shortsighted and know nothing of martial arts.
by TKD Guy December 02, 2004
a very fun sport that many men women and children as young as 3 practice. its fun, but is challenging and great exercise. i've been practicing taekwondo for almsot 3 years now, and i've made many new friends and have acquired many new skills. i am currently the top of my class and i now have a true love for taekwondo, and now i teach there too. in taekwondo, people may say its "wimpy" n shit like that because we wear gear and don't punch and whatever rumors go around. but yes, we do punch, and for all those douches who think its stupid. it takes a LOT of strategy, especially when sparring. one wrong move can cost you the game, and its just as aggressive as other sport such as football or basketball. and yes, we do wear gear, why? because some kids are not as prepared and not as strong as another, and to prevent any injuries, we put on guards.and if youre thinking "well if theyre nto as prepared, then why pair those two up?" well, its because in competition its by AGE and belt not by experience or watever. i've sparred kids half my size and who werent as good as me, so i've had to CONTROL my power and not totally kill them. i would have to use my speed instead of power. that's called CONTROL. just going ballistic against someone isnt a sport. if it was mugging could be a god damn sport.
and btw without guards , it wouldn't help us create "toughness" or whatever, it would just hurt us, and we could never learn from our mistakes coz almost everyone would be afraid to spar, really just pushing us away form wat we love to do. lets see you douches who try to insults taekwondo as being a boring non contact sport try to fight us without guards. some of us kick as hard as hell, in my taekwondo, we've had quite a few broken bones and sprained ankles that happened during sparring, WITH the guards on, and that means we kick pretty damn hard to kick through those guards and still break the bone(i've done this by ACCIDENT many times.. and im only 12 you assholes!!). and it takes a lot of strength, courage,control, and strategy to compete in taekwondo. strategy to predict your opponents moves;courage to fight another who is much larger or stronger than you;control to be able to lower your power if face with a smaller, or less experienced child, and strength to follow through in your kicks and to go to your best of you ability and to be proud of yourself when you do.
if you are a true athlete, you must have a love of your sport, as i do. i <3 taekwondo
by k3taekwondo May 14, 2011
A korean modern (ie last 200 years) martial art created for military combat.
Unfortunately the martial art has become so popular that it has suffered from a severe case of McDojos & huge increase of the sport version over the traditional art, 10 year old black-belts are far too common & the McDojos are everywhere. The sport version is split into two branches

WTF & ITF where the latter allows boxing methods to be employed. Unfortunately the sport is nearly completely useless for self-defence due to its point-system emphasising high kicks over strategic attack, penalty on aggressiveness in combat & not allowing grappling/clinching which all other sport-arts allow on some level + in WTFs scenario restarts after contact.
There is then the even worse branch ATA which is scam-artists at its best, ATA isn't recognised by the Koreans as a real branch of Taekwondo & ATA refuse to compete in ITF/WTF competitions alongside charging high prices for training.
Traditional Taekwondo is like any other art, a complete system in all aspects with grappling/locks/takedowns & strikes + weapon combat. Unfortunately it is far & few between to come across, Taekwondo is a prime example of what can potentially happen when a martial art is turned into a sport, though this hasn't been the case for many sport-arts such as Judo which is a highly effective system adapted to many police forces.
John: I started ITF Taekwondo, now if anybody tries to beat me up i'll kick them in the face

Jack: You're aware that the high kicks are in most cases NOT the best option especially where you will most likely get attacked ie alleys & crowded clubs? Let alone Taekwondo doesn't prepare you for multiple attackers & the potential for weapons being involved OR escaping if your kick is grappled.
Oh and they also hand out belts like candy in many cases. Do the sport if you want but don't fool yourself John into thinking it will be reliable to use fully in a fight.
by dum1anddum2 March 20, 2011
A martial art which focuses on utilizing kicks for long rang attacks. Also has a variety of punches, elbow strikes, and knee strikes.
The Tae-kwon-do tourney is next week. I'm taking tae-kwon-do to strengthen my legs and focus my mind
by TKD student December 15, 2004

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