What does Taekwondo teach – and what are those Korean words?
Poomse: (Taekwondo patterns or forms): Choreographed demonstrations of the various kicks, blocks and hand techniques of Taekwondo, practiced against an imaginary opponent. Observing a skilled poomse practitioner is like watching a ballet dancer; both arts are very graceful and controlled. Forms are used to develop concentration, balance, precision, reflex action, power, speed and agility. Students usually learn beginning poomses at the yellow belt level. We discuss more about Poomse since this is a rather involved subject.
Kyoruggi (Sparring/Fighting): The practical application of kicks, punches and blocks against an actual opponent in a controlled, safe environment. In a sparring competition, speed, skill, precision and confidence are the deciding factors. You will find different kinds of sparring at different dojangs, depending on the style of training, the skill level for fighting, and the type of training. WTF dojangs teach “sport” or Olympic Taekwondo sparring.
Kyulpa (Breaking): Demonstrations of skill and power in breaking boards, bricks and other material items. Breaking focuses on mental power, concentration, and speed – demonstrated on a material object because it cannot be demonstrated on a human being in a practical manner. There’s a lot more to breaking discussed here.
Hosinsool (Self-Defense): The study of how to protect oneself by using an attacker’s strength, skill and/or weapons against him/her. Most self-defense techniques teach a student how to overcome an attacker with moves to disable or disarm the person in order to get away from the situation andthen let the proper authorities sort out the details. Self-defense is the original reason Taekwondo was developed – see the History of Taekwondo for more info.
Some schools include weapons training, mediation, and other studies in their curriculum. When you are checking out a Taekwondo school, you will want to ask many questions – and you’ll learn about those questions here.