THE FOUNDER OF TAEKWON-DO
General Choi Hong
General Choi Hong Photos
-General Choi Hong Hi was born on 9 November 1918 in the rugged and harsh area of Hwa Dae, Myong Chun District in what is now DPR of Korea. In his youth, he was frail and quite sickly, a constant source of worry for his parents.
General Choi Hong Hi föddes den 9:e November 1918 i ett ogästvänligt område kallat Myong Chun distriktet. Det var en del av Hwa Dae, den nuvarande republiken Nordkorea.
Even at an early age, however, the future general showed a strong and independent spirit. At the age of twelve, he was expelled from school for agitating against the Japanese authorities that were in control of Korea. This was the beginning of what would be a long association with the Kwant Ju Students’ Independence Movement.
After his expulsion, young Choi’s father sent him to study calligraphy under one of the most famous teachers in Korea, Mr Han Il Dong. Han in addition to his skills as a calligrapher was also a master of Taek Kyon, the ancient Korean art of foot fighting. The teacher, concerned over the frail condition of his student, began teaching him the rigorous exercises of Taek Kyon to help build up his body.
– In 1937, Choi was sent to Japan to further his education. Shortly before leaving, however, the youth had the misfortune to engage in a rather heated argument with a massive professional wrestler who promised to literally tear the youth limb from limb at their next encounter. This threat seems to give a new impetus to young Choi’s training in the martial art In Kyoto,
Choi met a fellow Korean, Mr Kim, who was engaged in teaching the Japanese martial art, Karate. With two years of concentrated training, Choi attained the rang of first-degree black belt. These techniques, together with Taek Kyon (foot techniques) were the forerunners of modern Taekwon-Do.
There followed a period of both mental and physical training, preparatory school, high school, and finally the University of Tokyo. During this time, training and experimentation of his new fighting techniques were intensified until, with attainment of his second-degree black belt, he began teaching at a YMCA in Tokyo, Japan.
Choi recounts a particular experience from his period of time. There was no lamppost in the city that he didn’t strike or kick to see if the copper wires ahead were vibrating in protest.
“I would imagine that these were the techniques I would use to defend myself against the wrestler, Mr Hu, if he did attempt to carry out his promise to tear me limb from limb when I eventually returned to Korea”.
With the outbreak of World War II, the author was forced to enlist in the Japanese army through no volition of his own. While at his post in Pyongyang, North Korea, the author was implicated as the planner of the Korean Independence Movement, known as the Pyongyang Student Soldiers’ Movement and interned at a Japanese prison during his eight-month pretrial examination.
While in prison, to alleviate the boredom and keep physically fit, Choi began practicing this art in the solitude of his cell. In a short time, he cellmate and jailer became students of his. Eventually, the whole prison courtyard became one gigantic gymnasium.
The liberation in August 1945 spared Choi from an imposed seven-year prison sentence. Following his release, the ex-prisoner journeyed to Seoul where he organised a student soldier’s party. In January of the following year, Choi was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the new South Korean army, the “Launching Pad” for putting Taekwon-Do into a new orbit.
Soon after, he made company commander in Kwang-Ju where the young second lieutenant lighted the torch of this art by teaching his entire company and was then promoted to first lieutenant and transferred to Tae Jon in charge of the Second Infantry Regiment. While at his new post, Choi began spreading the art not only to Korean soldiers but also to the Americans stationed there. This was the first introduction to Americans of what would eventually become known as Taekwon-Do.
1947 was a year of fast promotion. Choi was promoted to captain and then major. In 1948, he was posted to Seoul as the head of logistics and became Taekwon-Do instructor for the American Military Police School there. In late 1948, Choi became a lieutenant colonel.
In 1949, Choi was promoted to full colonel and visited the United States for the first time, attending the Fort Riley Ground General School. While there, this art was introduced to the American public. And in 1951, brigadier general. During this time, he organised the Ground General School in Pusan as Assistant Commandant and Chief of the Academic Department. Choi was appointed as Chief of Staff of the First Corps in 1952 and was responsible for briefing General MacArthur during the latter’s visits to Kang Nung. At the time of the armistice, Choi was in command of the 5th Infantry Division.
The year 1953 was an eventful one for the General, in both his military career and in the progress of the new martial art. He became the author of the first authoritative book on military intelligence in Korea. He organised and activated the crack 29th Infantry Division of Ceju Island, which eventually became the spearhead of Taekwon-Do in the military and established the Oh Do Kwan (Gym of My Way) where he succeeded not only in training the cadre instructors for the entire military but also developing the Taek Kyon and Karate techniques into a modern system of Taekwon-Do, with the help of Mr Nam Tae Hi, his right hand man in 1954.
In the latter part of that year, he commanded Chong Do Kwan (Gym of the Blue Wave), the largest civilian gym in Korea; Choi was also promoted to major general.
Technically, 1955 signaled the beginning of Taekwon-Do as a formally recognized art in Korea. During that year, a special board was formed which included leading master instructors, historians, and prominent leaders of society. A number of names for the new martial art were submitted. On 11th of April, the board summoned by General Choi decided on the name of Taekwon-Do which had been submitted by him. This single unified name of Taekwon-Do replaced the different and confusing terms; Dang Soo, Gong Soo, Taek Kyon, Kwon Bup etc.
During the year of 1956 and 1957 the energetic general spread Taekwon-Do to universities and military posts throughout Korea. The Third Military District Command in Tae Jon became one of the main centers for this new art.
Gen Choi explains the meaning of ‘Taekwon’ both literally and technically. Mr Yoo says, “I completely agree with the name of Taekwon submitted by Maj Gen Cho Hong Hi. I think, however, it would be utterly significant that we have the approval from the president, since giving a name to a martial art is so important”.
Mr Cho, the Chairman, motioned that a three-men subcommittee be formed to study historical and academic data which will be submitted to each member not later than December 31. These members in turn, should be responsible for getting the approval from the President within one week upon receiving the above data.
In 1958 he made us of his reluctantly assigned position as the chief of the reserve bureau by successfully spreading Taekwon-Do to the entire reserve divisions under this supervision.
All members unanimously agreed.
In 1959 Taekwon-Do spread beyond its national boundaries. The father of Taekwon-Do and nineteen of his top black belt holders toured the Far East. The tour was a major success, astounding all spectators with the excellence of the Taekwon-Do techniques. Many of these black belt holders such as Nam Tae Hi, President of the Asia Taekwon-Do Federation; Colonel Ko Jae Chun, the 5th Chief of Taekwon-Do instructors in Vietnam; Colonel Baek Joon Gi, the 2nd Chief instructor in Vietnam, Brigadier General Woo Jong Lim; Mr Han Cha Kyo, the head Instructor in Singapore and Mr Cha Soo Young presently an international instructor in Washington DC eventually went on to spread the art to the world.
The Korean Ambassador to Vietnam, General Choi Duk Shin was instrumental in helping to promote Taekwon-Do in this nation locked in a death struggle with the communists. That same year General Choi Hong Hi published his first Korean text on Taekwon-Do, which became the model for the 1965 edition.
In the year of 1960 the General attended the Modern Weapons Familiarization Course in Texas followed by a visit to Jhoon Rhees Karate Club in San Antonio, where the author convinced the students to use the name Taekwon-Do instead of Karate. Thus Jhoon Rhee is known as the first Taekwon-Do instructor in America.
This marked the beginning of Taekwon-Do in the United States of America.
Choi returned to Korea as the Directory of Intelligence of the Korean Army. Later that same year, he assumed command of the Combat Armed Command with direction of the infantry, artillery, armoured, signal and aviation schools.
The year 1961 was the year of maturation for both Choi’s military career and Taekwon-Do, with the command of the largest training centers in Korea and the newly assigned command of the 6th Army Corps.
Taekwon-Do spread like wildfire, not only to the Korean civilian and military population but to US soldiers of the 7th Infantry Division which was under his operational control. Through his students, Taekwon-Do was even introduced to the greatest military academy in the world, West Point. In the same year, he also made Taekwon-Do a compulsory subject for the entire armed and police force in South Korea.
In 1962, Choi was appointed as Ambassador to Malaysia where, as a dedicated missionary of Taekwon-Do, the art was spread. In 1963 the Taekwon-Do association of Malaysia was formed and reached national acceptance when the art was demonstrated at the Merdeka Stadium at the request of the Prime Minister, Tunju Abdul Rhaman.
The same year, two important milestones took place; the famous demonstration at the United Nationals building in New York, and the introduction of Taekwon-Do to the Armed Forces of Vietnam under Manor Nam Tae Hi. In February of the following year, a Taekwon-Do Association was formed in Singapore, and the groundwork was laid for forming associations in the outer reaches of Brunei.
The same year, Ambassador Choi made a trip to Vietnam with the sole purpose of teaching the advanced Taekwon-Do patterns that he perfected after years of research to the instructors group headed by Lt Col Park Joon Gi in person. This was indeed a new era for Taekwon-Do in that he was able to draw a clear line between Taekwon-Do and Karate by completely eliminating the remaining vestige of Karate.
Later this year, he was re-elected to be the President of the Korea Taekwon-do Association upon returning home, which gave him a chance to purify the Taekwon-Do society by cleaning up the political circles within its organisation.
In 1965 Ambassador Choi, retired two star general, was appointed by the Government of the Republic of Korea to lead a goodwill mission to West Germany. Italy, Turkey, United Arab Republic, Malaysia and Singapore. This trip is significant in that the Ambassador, for the first time in Korean history, declared Taekwon-Do as the national martial art of Korea.
This was the basis not only for establishing Taekwon-Do Associations in these countries but also the formation of the International Taekwon-Do Federation (ITF) as it is know today. In 1966 the dream of the sickly young student of calligraphy, who rose to Ambassador and the Association President of the most respected martial art in the world, came true. On 22 March, the International Taekwon-Do Federation (ITF) was formed with associations in Vietnam, Malaysia, Singapore, West Germany, the United States, Turkey, Italy, Arab Republic of Egypt and Korea.
In 1967 the father of Taekwon-Do received the first Class Distinguished Service medal from the Government of Vietnam and he helped to form the Korea-Vietnam Taekwon-Do Foundation, presided by Gen Tran van Dong. That same year the Hong Kong Taekwon-Do Association was formed. In August Choi visited the All American Taekwon-Do tournament held in Chicago Illinois, where he discussed expansion, unification, and the policy of the United States Taekwon-Do Association with leading instructors. This visit led to the formal establishment of the US Taekwon-Do Association in Washington DC on 26 November 1967.
During this visit Choi also met with Robert Walson, fourth degree black belt and one of the foremost American authorities on Taekwon-Do to lay the groundwork for a new edition of a book on Taekwon-Do.
In late 1967, the author invited Master Oyama to the ITF Headquarters in Seoul to continue the discussion they had earlier at Hakone, Japan, whereby Master Oyama would eventually change his techniques to that of Taekwon-Do.
In that same year, the President of the ITF selected five instructors from the Armed Forces for Taiwan, at the request of Generalissimo Chiang Kai-Shek. This request was channelled through General Chung Il Kwon, then the Prime Minister of South Korea.
In 1968, the author visited France, as the chief delegate of the Korean Government, to attend the Consul International Sports Military Symposium held in Paris. Taekwon-Do was a major topic on the agenda. Delegates from 32 countries witnessed demonstrations of Taekwon-Do by a team of experts. That same year, the United Kingdom Taekwon-Do Association (UKTA) was formed and the author visited Spain, the Netherlands, Canada, Belgium and India with the hope of spreading Taekwon-Do.
When Choi returned to Korea he was presented with the first Sports Research Award from south Korea for his dedicated work on behalf of the Korean martial art.
In 1969, Choi toured South East Asia to personally investigate the preparations of each country for the First Asian Taekwon-Do Tournament that was held in September in Hong Kong. Immediately after the tournament, the author undertook a worldwide tour of 29 countries to visit instructors and gather photographs for the first edition of his previous book “Taekwon-Do (copyright 1972).
August 1970 the author left for a tour of 20 countries throughout South East Asia, Canada, Europe and the Middle East. Choi held seminars for international instructors every place he went and helped spread and weld the ITF into a cohesive force.
In March 1971, Choi attended the 2nd Asian Taekwon-Do Tournament, held at Stadium Negara in Malaysia, which was opened with the declaration of Tun Abdul Rhajak, the Prime Minister and closed with the presence of their Majesties.
Also in this year, the author was asked by Gen Kim Jong Hyun, head of the Army Martial Art department to select qualified instructors for the Republic of Iran Armed Forces.
The world tour in 1972 was quite retrospective in that Choi had an opportunity to introduce Taekwon-Do to those heads of state of Bolivia, Dominica, Haiti and Guatemala respectively.
In this year, Choi moved the headquarters of ITF with the unanimous consent of member countries to Toronto, Canada, envisaging to spread this art eventually to the countries of Eastern Europe, according to the milestone he set up years before.
During these travels the author has been especially interested in promoting Taekwon-Do among the youth of the world. The president of the ITF has been instrumental in introducing the art to numerous universities in Europe, America, the Middle East and the Far East.
During the months of November and December 1973, General Choi and a specially selected ITF Demonstration Team, consisting of Kong Young Il, Park Jong Soo, Rhee Ki Ha, Pak Sun Jae and Choi Chang Keun, all 7th degree black belts toured Europe, Middle East, Africa and Far East. A total of 13 countries were visited and new ITF branches established in 5 of these countries. The tour was an overwhelming success with a total of more than 100,000 people watching the demonstrations in Egypt alone. At each stop, general Choi and the Demonstration Team were hosted by ranking representatives of the local governments.
1974 was an exuberant and long remembered year for Choi, because the founder of Taekwon-Do was not only able to proudly present the superiority of techniques as well as the competition rules of this art, but also to bring his dream into reality by holding the first World Taekwon-Do Championships in Montreal.
In November and December of this year, he led the 4th International Taekwon-Do Demonstration Team consisting of 10 of the world’s top instructors to Jamaica, Curacao, Costa Rica, Colombia, Venezuela and Surinam.
In 1975 Taekwon-Do alone had the privilege to demonstrate at the Sydney Opera House for the first time since its opening. General Choi visited Greece and Sweden to conduct seminars later in this year.
In the middle of 1976 he toured Iran, Malaysia, Indonesia and Europe to inspect Taekwon-Do activities giving seminars at the same time. November of the same year, Choi went to Holland to declare the opening of the First European Taekwon-Do Championships held in Amsterdam.
September 1977 the founder of Taekwon-Do visited Malaysia, New Zealand and Australia following the Tokyo meeting in which he publicly denounced the South Korean President Park Jung Hee who had been using Taekwon-Do for his political ends. Later that year he visited Sweden and Denmark to aid in the formation of their National Associates of Taekwon-Do.
In May 1978, General Choi toured Malaysia, Pakistan, Kenya and South Africa accompanied by Rhee Ki Ha. In this eyar he led the 5th International Taekwon-do Demonstration Team consisting of Choi Chang Keun, Rhee Ki Ha, Park Jung Tae and Liong Wai Meng to Sweden, Poland, Hungary and Yugoslavia. In September the same year the Second World Taekwon-Do Championships was held in Oklahoma City. USA.
In June 1979, the All Europe Taekwon-Do Federation was formed in Oslo, Norway. After this historic event General Choi toured Sweden, Denmark, West Germany, France and Greenland accompanied by Khang Su Jong and Rhee Ki Ha. In November of that year he led the 6th International Taekwon-Do Demonstration team consisting of Kin Jong Chan, Choi Chang Keun, Rhee Ki Ha, Park Jung Tae, Lee Jong Moon, Chung Kwang Duk, Kim Suk Jun and Michael Cormack to Argentina.
The year 1980 was an unforgettable one for the father of Taekwon-do both for himself and the future of his art. He and 15 of his students including his son Choi Joong Hwa made a monumental trip to the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. This was the first time Taekwon-Do was introduced to the people of North Korea, Choi’s birthplace. In November of the same year, the first All Europe Taekwon-Do Championships was held in London with 18 countries participating.
In January 1981, General Choi made a visit to Queensland, Australia, accompanied by Choi Chang Keun to declare the first Open Pacific Area Taekwon-do Championships. At this time he helped to form the South pacific Taekwon-do Federation as well as the Australia Taekwon-Do Federation.
In June of the same year, the author led the 8th International Taekwon-Do Demonstration Team to Tokyo, Japan. In October he conducted a seminar for the founding members of Taekwon-Do in the Democratic people’s Republic of Korea and in November he proudly presented the unified Taekwon-Do demonstration team consisting of North and South Korean instructors to the historic meeting called North and Overseas Korea Christian Leaders held in Vienna Austria.
In August General Choi visited Argentina to declare the opening of the Third World Taekwon-Do Championships held in Resitancia, Chaco.
In January 1982 the President of ITF formed the North America Taekwon-Do Federation in Toronto, Canada. In the year, the author was finally able to realise his long anticipated dream (since 1967) when a Taekwon-Do gym opened for the first time in Japan under the auspices of patriot Chon Jin Shik. It was indeed a very busy year for the President in that he visited Puerto Rico in July accompanied by Master Park Jung Tae to conduct seminars.
During the months of October and November he toured Greenland, the UK, West Germany, Austria, Denmark, Poland, Hungary, Yugoslavia, Czechoslovakia and Finland accompanied by Master Han Sam Soo, park Jung Taek and Choi Joong Hwa to promote Taekwon-Do. He also attended the First Intercontinental Taekwon-Do Championships held in December in Naples, Italy.
In October of the same year General Choi met with Mr Csanadi, the Chairman of programming committee of IOC in Budapest, Hungary to discuss the recognition of ITF by the IOC.
In January 1983, General Choi made a visit to Colorado; USA accompanied by Master Lee Suk Hi, the President of North America Taekwon-Do Federation to grade Charles E Sereff the President of UK Taekwon-Do Federation for 7th Degree.
In February 1983, the author toured Latin America including Argentina, Columbia, Panama and Honduras to conduct full-scale seminar. During his stay in Honduras he helped to activate the Central America Taekwon-Do Federation.
During the months of March, April and May he toured Santa Barbara, California, Europe and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea to conduct last minute preparation of the Encyclopedia, the last product of his life-long research.
In October and November of the same year, he made a visit to Yugoslavia and Italy accompanied by Park Jung Taek and Choi Joong Hwa to prepare photographs to be used for the Encyclopedia.
In April 1984, General Choi declared the opening of the 4th World Taekwon-Do Championships held in Glasgow, Scotland. In the same month, he visited Mr Juan Antonio Samaranch, President of the International Olympic committee in Lausanne accompanied by Master Rhee Ki Ha, Charles Sereff and Kim Yong Kyu to prove that only the ITF is the world governing body of true Taekwon-Do.
In September, the author invited key instructors such as Lee Suk Hi, Rhee Ki Ha, park Jung Tae and Choi Joong Hwa to Pyongyang to finalize the publication of the Encyclopedia. In fact, this was the time when the relocation of the ITF to Vienna Austria was seriously discussed.
In October of the same year, the President made an official visit to Budapest, Hungary to declare the opening of the 3rd All Europe Taekwon-Do Championships. This was of particular importance as it was the first large-scale international event held in a socialist country as far as Taekwon-Do tournament is concerned.
In the following month, General Choi visited New York City along with masters Lee Suk Hi and Park Jung Tae to declare open the 3rd annual General Choi’s Cup in North America.
In December the 5th ITF Congress meeting was held in Vienna where it was unanimously decided to relocate the ITF by March of the next year. Also at the meeting Present Choi Hong Hi was re-elected for another term. Mr Jun Chin Shik, the President of Japan International Taekwon-Do Federation, masters Lee Suk Hi and Rhee ki Ha were elected as Vice Presidents with master Park Jung Tae as Secretary General.
Without doubt 1985 was one of the most significant years for the founder of Taekwon-Do as he was able to document all of the techniques he had researched for years by publishing the Encyclopedia of Taekwon-Do. He was also able to establish a strong foundation for the spreading of his art to the entire world, especially the socialist as well as the Third World countries by moving the International Taekwon-Do Federation to Vienna the capital city of Austria.
In April of this year, General Choi visited Puerto Rico accompanied by Tran Trien Quan, the President of the Canadian Taekwon-Do Federation, James Lim and, Kim Suk Jun to attend the 1st Latin American General Choi’s Cup. In June he visited East Berlin to attend the opening ceremony of the 24th IOC Congress.
In November of the same year, General Choi accompanied by Secretary General Master park Jung Tae and Tran Trien Quan visited Norway to honour the opening of the 1985 Scandinavian Taekwon-do Championships. In December various festivals celebrating the 30th anniversary of Taekwon-Do held in Quebec, Canada sponsored by the Taekwon-Do Federation of Canada were highlighted with the presence of the Father of Taekwon-Do, General Choi Hong Hi.
In June 1986 the founder took DPRK Taekwon-Do Demonstration Team to the People’s Republic of China. This visit eventually became the motivation for the Chinese people to adopt the Korean martial art, Taekwon-Do.
1987 was a significant year for general Choi because he showed once again the indomitable spirit as well as perseverance to the Taekwon-do world by declaring the 5th World Championship in May in Athens, Greece, despite persistent interference of South Korean dictatorial regime.
In December of the same year, president Choi began to formulate the promotion and Popularization Foundation of ITF boosted by the pledge given by Mr Chon Yon Shik, the elder brother of senior vice-president Mr Chon Jin Shik, in the amount of 100,000,000 Japanese Yen.
The year 1998 was culminated by two important events. In May the Hungarian government hosted the 6th Taekwon-do World Championship in Budapest, which was by far, the largest in scale, finest in technique and also for the first time, televised via satellite throughout Europe.
In August, General Choi was at last able to realise his ultimate dream of introducing and teaching his art without regard to religion, race, national or ideological boundaries, by leading the ITF Demonstration Team to Moscow, USSR.
At the beginning of 1989 the condensed version of “Taekwon-Do” of 765 pages was published. In June, General Choi travelled to Yanji China, a self governing district bordering the northern part of Korea where he met with leading Korean nationals and reached an agreement to organise the Yan Bin Taekwon-Do Association.
It is understandable that the founder of Taekwon-Do rejoiced immensely in July when Taekwon-Do was chosen as a formal event of the 13th World Festival of Youth and Student. In September, ensuing the second Pan-American Taekwon-Do Championship held in Honduras General Choi conducted seminars on Taekwon-Do techniques for the participants from fourteen countries.
In March 1990 the author, accompanied by his son Choi Joong Hwa (7th Degree) and Ri Yong Sok (6th Degree Instructor in the USSR) visited Tashkent, Uzbekistan. For 10 days he elaborated on the method and proficiency of Taekwon-Do for 8 hours each day to over 60 Karate black belt holders who travelled from six republics across the USSR to meet the Found of Taekwon-Do. Following this seminar President Choi stopped in Moscow to give another five-day technical seminar that laid a firm foundation for Taekwon-Do in the USSR.
Late in June he made a trip to Hanoi accompanied by Jong Jae Hun, Vice President of the Korean Taekwon-Do Federation. Here General Choi met with the minister for physical culture, where they resolved diverse Taekwon-Do issues. He then visited Ho Chi Minh City where a seminar was held for some one hundred black belt holders. In August, the 7th Taekwon-Do World Championships took place in Montreal Canada. The 4-day event was an immense success with some 600 competitors from 51 nations.
In September, General Choi accompanied by Pha Lu (5th Degree and secretary of the Canadian Taekwon-Do Federation International) visited Yanji, People’s Republic of China. A 3 day seminar was given on Taekwon-Do techniques to black belt holders at Yian Bin University, which resulted in producing 3 International Instructors for the first time in the history of People’s Republic of China.
In the spring of 1991, General Choi, accompanied by Vice President Rhee Ki Ha to Moscow where he gave an historic lecture that lasted 4 hours at the Lenin Central University of Physical Education of the USSR. As a result of this lecture, the University decided to adopt Taekwon-Do as a 4-year credit course.
In August, General Choi, Le Ki Young, Secretary General and Valmir Ligai, the highest degree holder of Taekwon-Do in the USSR, paid a visit to the President of Uzbekistan where agreement was reached on various matters concerning Taekwon-Do. Later the Founder awarded the President of Uzbekistan with a honorary 5th degree.
1992 was a year of pride not only for General Choi himself, but also for all Korean people. He was conferred with a honourary doctorate in physical education by the Lenin Central University of Physical Education of the USSR one of the most authoritative institutes of physical education in the world. This honour was the fruit of his endeavour throughout his life. In September, 8th Taekwon-Do world Championship was held at the Taekwon-Do hall.
The championship lasted 5 days, in which, for the first time in the history of Taekwon-Do as many as 66 countries and some 700 competitors participated. The event took place in Pyongyang, capital of the ancient kingdom of Koguryo, with full pomp and ceremony. At this championship Korea demonstrated to the world its place s the home of Taekwon-Do by placing first in the individual and overall results. In addition, the widely respected New Encyclopedia Britannica put forth that year clearly referred to General Choi Hong Hi as the principal found of Taekwon-Do. General Choi has now been recognised worldwide as the true Father of Taekwon-Do. In April 1993 the author made an official visit to Kyrgyzstan do discuss matters on Taekwon-Do.
1993 was the historical year to General Choi. In this year, the First Junior TKD World Championship was held in Moscow. In July General Choi accompanied by Valeri Kuzin, Vice President of the ITF visited Ryazan City, which is several hundred kilometers from Moscow.
He went round the Russian Army Airborne Troops School and decided to organise the Taekwon-Do team here. Following this month, he visited Russian Military University of Physical Education in Saint Petersburg and here they decided to introduce and adopt Taekwon-Do as a training course of the University.
In September, General Choi went to Tashkent, the capital of Uzbekistan and opened the Asian-Pacific TKD Championship, which contributed to introduce Taekwon-Do in Asia.
In November 1993, General Choi accompanied by Master Leong Wai Meng, Chairman of Umpire Committee of ITF, visited India for an International Taekwon-Do Seminar.
In September 1995, General Choi made a trip to Tajikstan and he discussed issues about Taekwon-Do with the First Deputy Prime Minister. Then he conducted seminars on Taekwon-Do techniques for the black belt holders from Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova and Russia.
In April 1996, General Choi holds the 1st ITF meeting in Toronto, Canada. Here, participated the high degree holders of more than 5th Degree. At the meeting, they discussed about the further strengthening matters of Taekwon-Do and the seminar was given on Taekwon-Do techniques to fix patterns ultimately for high degree holders. And Finally, they celebrated the foundation of the ITF (11 April).
In July General Choi accompanied by Rhee Ki Ha, Vice president of the ITF, participated in the 3rd Junior Taekwon-Do World Championship in Prague, Czech Republic. Here the excellent young competitors participated from 34 various countries of the world.
Following this month, General Choi made an impressive meeting with Gennanzi Seleznyov, the Chairman of the Parliament of Russia. (He had gone through the harshest ordeals with him). General Choi had Gennazi Seleznyov, the Chairman of the Parliament of Russia over the permanent adviser of ITF and conferred the degree of honour on him.
In July 1997, General Choi visited St Petersburg on guidance for the 11 ITF Congress and participated in the 10 TKD World Championships. At the Congress, Master Choi Joong Hwa was nominated as the Secretary General of the ITF. 73 countries participated in the championship.
Following this month, the founder of TKD also went round a construction site of the Sacred Place of TKD.
General Choi accompanied by Master Choi Joong Hwa paid a formal visit to the prime Minister of Canada and had a long talk with him. Here he presented the prime minister with his calligraphy that was written in his own hand.
In September 1999 General Choi journeyed to Argentina. Here the 12 Congress of the ITF and the 11th TKD World Championship was held. 800 competitors from 75 countries participated.
On this day, General Choi opened the Inaugural Meeting of the IMGC (International Martial Arts Games Committee). 23 representatives from 14 countries participated.
March 2001, General Choi was conferred the Honorary Doctor’s Degree of Philosophy at Kishnov University in the Republic of Moldova. The Prime Minister took part in the ceremony.
In May 2001 the 1st Congress of the International Martial Art Games Committee was held in Pyongyang. Participating in the games were delegates of Taekwon-Do, Wushu, Karate, Aikido, Ju-Jitsu from 9 countries of Russia, Canada, Australia, Malaysia, Mongolia, Uzbekistan, Cambodia and DPRK.
In July 2001 the founder of Taekwon-Do guided the 13 Congress of ITF and 700 competitors from 64 countries participated in the 12th TKD World Championship.
In August of the same year, the founder of Taekwon-Do completed and let the world know his Memoirs “Taekwon-Do and I” in 3 volumes which had taken a great deal of effort over many years.
General Choi Hong Hi, the founder of Taekwon-Do passed away in Pyongyang DPRK on 15 June 2002 at the age of 84.
On his deathbed General Choi left ITF to Mr Chang Ung, the IOC Member, 1st Vice Chairman of Physical Culture and Sports Guidance Committee of DPRK and member of Standing Committee of Korean Taekwon-do Committee.
General Choi also created “Chang Hon” Foundation (pseudonym of Choi Hong Hi) and nominated Chang Ung as the President. The copyright of Taekwon-Do Encyclopedia and Taekwon-Do Condensed Version belongs to Chang Hon Foundation
– Modern-day Taekwondo as we practice today was founded April 11, 1955 by Gen. Choi Hong-Hi.
Its origins date back about 1300 years and has its roots in Tae Kyon, Soo Bak Gi and some karate techniques.
Taekwondo today have very little in common with the above martial arts.
During Gen. Choi’s leadership was a diversity of techniques and spiritual disciplines combined to technological perfection,
and finally shaping today’s scientific Tae Kwon-Do.
– Tae Kwon-Do is a Korean art of self-defence
Created by Gen. Choi Hong Hi, president of the international Tae Kwon-Do Federation (ITF).
-The study of Tae Kwon-Do proceeded in two parts; spiritual discipline and technical perfection.
It aims at a noble moral rearmament, high degree of intellectual achievement, graceful techniques, formidable power and beauty of physical form.
-strength and physical beauty. It can therefore be considered as a part of everyday life, as natural as breathing and thinking.
– Taekwondo emphasizes not only a strict self-imposed discipline along with cooperative and mutual respect but also:
patience and determination to overcome difficulties.
Tae Kwon-Do translating literally as “Tae” for foot, “kwon” the fist and “Do” Road and morality. So you can certainly understand that this is a martial art that uses an individual’s full potential.
Tae Kwon-Do’s principles (Jung Shin) Tae Kwon-Do
goal to aim for:
The tenets of Tae Kwon-Do (Jungshin)
Tae Kwon-Do aims to achieve:
Courtesy (Ye Ui)
Integrity (Yom Chi)
Perseverance (In Nae)
Self-Control (Guk Gi)
Indomitable Spirit (Baekjul Boolgool)
I shall observe the tenets of Tae Kwon-Do.
I shall respect the instructor and seniors.
I shall never misuse Tae Kwon-Do.
I shall be a champion of freedom and justice.
I shall build a more peaceful world.