Ying Yang

Taekwondo Information

Korean History

Modern times did not stop clashes among neighbors.

Korean history was changed by frequent conflicts with China and Japan. These clashes also brought the native martial arts of Japan and China into Korea, further developing modern tae kwond o.

This permanently altered the native arts practiced among Korean families. Martial arts knowledge of tae kwon do were handed down from generation to generation.

In 1909, the Japanese invaded and annexed Korea. This colonization proved oppressive to the Korean people.

Japanese imperialists declared the practice of native Korean martial arts to be forbidden.

Eventually, censorship of all Korean history and culture was forced and Japanese was declared the only language acceptable in schools and in print.

It was this attempt at brutal subjugation of native culture that caused resurgence of all Korean culture in secret, including martial arts.

Underground societies practiced all facets of Korean culture in secrecy to keep it alive. In addition, many Koreans went to Japan and China to live and work, absorbing new culture and new styles of martial arts.

World War II ended in 1945, bringing the end of Japanese occupation.

Korea was once again an independent nation. Masters who had been living in China and Japan returned to their homeland bringing with them knowledge of many foreign styles of martial arts.

The Masters who had stayed in Korea and worked to keep native Taek Kyon and other martial arts forms alive in the underground worked with returning masters.

The native blended with the new and martial arts experienced resurgence in the newly free Korea.

The first native Korean martial arts school kwan opened its doors in 1944.

It was soon followed by four more schools all teaching various forms of traditional Korean martial arts. Within ten years, another four schools were opened forming the foundation of modern tae kwon do.

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