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Hapkido/Self Defense

HAPKIDO is the martial art of Choi, Yong Sul (1904-1986). Mr. Choi was born in Korea, but was brought to Japan as a young boy. Eventually he was adopted into the household of Takeda Sokaku, head of Daito-Ryu Aikijutsu. Mr. Choi lived and studied with Takeda Sokaku until Sokaku’s death. At the end of World War II, Mr. Choi returned to his native Korea and supported himself and his family by teaching a "new" martial art, Hapkido, which was based on the Daito-Ryu Aikijutsu he had learned in Japan.

Many Japanese will not accept a Korean born master of Daito-Ryu, especially one claiming to be the only man to have mastered the entire art. To acknowledge Mr. Choi would undermine the purely Japanese character of Daito-Ryu. Instead, the Japanese minimize Mr. Choi's role, stating only that Mr. Choi attended a seminar with Sokaku. On the other hand, many Koreans ignore or diminish Mr. Choi’s tie to Japan because they want Hapkido to be considered Korean in origin. Some Korean authors trace Hapkido history to an ancient warrior class and then refer to Mr. Choi as an afterthought. Others omit Mr. Choi entirely from the history of Hapkido.

Hapkido, literally translated, means the way (do) of power (ki) and coordination (hap).
Hapkido is a comprehensive martial art, emphasizing kicking and punching as well as joint-locks, throws, chokes, take-downs, and the use of pressure points. The study of Hapkido develops: strength, speed, agility, flexibility, coordination, discipline, sportsmanship, leadership, respect, peace of mind, self confidence, winning spirit, character, mind and body harmony. Hapkido is a total martial art, combining the locking and breaking aspects of Aikido, the throwing aspects of Jujitsu,and Judo, the striking aspects of Karate, and the footwork and kicks of Taekwondo.


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