The Tao of Taekwondo

Notes and reflections from a deeper practice of traditional taekwondo

Sunday, August 24, 2008

The sport side

Taekwondo has come in for some well-deserved criticism after the Olympic tournament featured a nmber of judging farces and furious competitors who lodged protests and in the now infamous case of Angel Matos, kicked a referee in the head.

The problem with taekwondo as a sport is that there is no way to measure objectively and safely the winner of a bout. It all relies on judging, and judging is subject to numerous flaws ranging from poor scoring to outright bribery. Furthermore, the results of a taekwondo fight tell you nothing about the quality of the fighter, and in many cases, they don;t even give an accurate comparison of the two figters in a match.

But since 1988, taekwondo has been in the spotlight at the Olympics and this has driven many in the WTF to place a high emphasis on the competitive sport aspect of the art. There are many WTF schools that focus almost exclusively on sparring now, to the detriment of the other factors of the art. This has had tragic consequences for taekwondo as a traditional martial art.

I hope sincerely that taekwondo is dropped from the Olympic games. It has become a highly political sport now. Perhaps if the popularity if Kukki style taekwondo were reduced, instructors and masters would ficus more on training well-rounded individuals, versed in self-defense and self-discipline and less focused on trophies and national pride.


Blogger Tammy said...

I agree with you so much. Thank you

September 20, 2008 10:36 AM  

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