Introduction to TKD

Discussion in 'Tae Kwon Do' started by Fireblade, Sep 14, 2015.

  1. Fireblade

    Fireblade New Member


    I am considering becoming part of a Taekwondo club, but I have no previous experience in TKD. I have studied it on the internet for a long time now, but I would like to know more about this before I start practising it. What skills can I expect to learn by belt level and what parts of TKD are the most enjoyable / useful to you?
  2. Pretty In Pink

    Pretty In Pink Moved on MAP 2017 Gold Award

    Beat way to know is to try! Take a trial class :)

    General benefits are flexibility, weight loss and generally just healthier.
  3. Van Zandt

    Van Zandt Mr. High Kick

    What you study will depend on the teaching preferences of the instructor(s), which is influenced by the association they're part of. If they're with the World Taekwondo Federation, they will probably lean towards Olympic-rules sparring for the bulk of their lessons. If they are with the International Taekwondo Federation, they will probably be more "traditional" and focus on patterns and self-defence. You will only know when you speak to the instructor and start training.

    Understand the above is a generalisation; there are ITF-style clubs which produce phenomenal tournament fighters and WTF-style clubs which focus mostly on self-defence. Either way, you'll learn to kick people in the head, which is the most fun thing you can do in martial arts!
  4. Fireblade

    Fireblade New Member

    Thanks for the info.

    I've a few question on sparring and the kicks used in matches. Why is the roundhouse kick used so frequently, but front kicks and side kicks are barely ever used? (I've noticed this in Olympic sparring videos) Isn't it very easy to simply block a roundhouse kick and hit someone in the chest with a front / side kick? I know that round kicks are very fast and powerful, but it still seems like they are a bit overrated. I find them painfully boring to watch, so I don't think I can be objective on this, I'll need someone else's opinion.
    Also, what would the penalty be if you used a low spinning heel kick on someone in a sparring match? (Spinning hook kick to the ankle used to sweep the leg) Are you allowed to use this if it is not your intention to hit your opponent with it, but you use it as a feint?
  5. Hannibal

    Hannibal Cry HAVOC and let slip the Dogs of War!!! Supporter

    Forget everything you think you know because it isnt worth a hill of beans

    TKD has a ruleset that has evolved to favor specific technoques; you see them a lot because they work a lot. The chances of you finding a flaw are zero so turn up, train, have fun and above all LISTEN
  6. Simon

    Simon Administrator Admin Supporter MAP 2017 Koyo Award

    I agree.

    Stand like a boxer, close that guard right up and wonder how the TKD guy kicked you in the chest.

    The roundhouse is a great kick and is so easy to feint.

    A great penetrating kick, whether it's low, mid-height or to the head.

    An entry, a strike, it has the lot if you know what you're doing.
  7. Ben Gash CLF

    Ben Gash CLF Valued Member

    Because they stand side on.
    A) no B ) See the previous answer.
    If you want to kick but find those areas of kicking more attractive then do Kyokushin, Thai or Savate.
  8. Van Zandt

    Van Zandt Mr. High Kick

    The roundhouse kick is popular because of its speed and versatility. It's possibly one of the fastest techniques in a TKD athlete's arsenal and TKD sparring is very much a game of speed. The athlete can counter, switch from leg to leg and spin with roundhouse kicks in ways that just don't work as effectively with other kicks.

    Front kicks and side kicks are used more than you think, particularly when launching attacks with a push kick from the rear leg (for example, using a rear leg push kick to the opponent's body to force him back, thus creating space for a double round or stepping-in axe kick).

    Side kicks are probably the most common kick in ITF-style sparring, and have become a common sight in Olympic-style sparring (again, for the reason of creating distance). Push side kicks to the head are also increasing in popularity.

    Spar against even a mediocre WTF black belt and see if you still think blocking a roundhouse kick is simple or easy. Blocking with your head doesn't count by the way.

    As said above - DQ. Although depending on the malice and intent behind it, you may find yourself suspended from competing for a lengthy spell or even permanently expelled from your club/association (I've seen it happen).

    Yes, we know TKD athletes leave themselves open to leg kicks. They probably know it more than anyone given the number of times they'll accidentally be kicked in the legs during training.
  9. qazaqwe

    qazaqwe Valued Member

    Is it really a sport if you can't use the hug tornado?
  10. Mitch

    Mitch Lord Mitch of MAP Admin

    Yes, because you can use the Hug axe kick and knock people out. :D

  11. Latikos

    Latikos Valued Member

    I blocked a fist with my nose a few weeks back and thought it worked awesomely well! :cool:

    More on topic: Being a person that thinks too much myself, I think the best thing to do at the point is: Go and try. Stop reading about it.
    You can read for months and once you're there the first thing you'll notice is how much time you've wasted ^^
  12. qazaqwe

    qazaqwe Valued Member

    I thought a KO was a DQ in taekwondo these days as of recently? I don't know where i read it, nor do i know what organization it applies to, but, i am sure i read it somewhere, did i?
  13. Van Zandt

    Van Zandt Mr. High Kick

    Olympic sparring continues to permit win by KO. A knockout in ITF sparring won't necessarily result in DQ if the attacker hit with control and accuracy, even though it is typically semi-contact (i.e. KO is not permitted, but leeway is given because some people can't take even a moderate hit as well as others). Full-contact (KO permitted) events do exist in ITF sparring however (e.g. Pro Taekwon-do).
  14. Fireblade

    Fireblade New Member

    Thank you for the great answers everyone!

    If the roundhouse is used for its speed, what would the best counter to it be? If you have good reflexes you can easily spot one coming in (of course if the person is a pro you'd have to worry about it being a great feint, but lets take one problem at a time) and if it is coming towards your chest you can pivot off your front foot with a block and go into a spinning hook kick. My sparring partner is a heavy bag, so I have no idea how this would work against an actual person, but the momentum displacement / redirection seems quite efficient. If the hook kick misses you could also spin all the way through with it and pivot hard on your supporting leg, going into a tornado kick. Or if a roundhouse is coming towards your back (not sure why it would but let's say it does) you could simply skip in and use a side kick so the roundhouse scuffs off your back.
    As I said, my partner doesn't throw kicks too often and his legs are invisible so I have no idea how far his kicking range is. I'll have to work out my range and then apply it somehow.

    If you are a side-on fighter, would the side kick be efficient as protection against someone moving in? (In other words, if someone moves within range of your side kick, you just lift the lead leg up and push the person away) It seems to be very effective in this regard, since you can have a controlled lean on a side kick, which puts you out of range of most kicks.
  15. Latikos

    Latikos Valued Member

    When my kickbox-teacher kicks a roundhouse you spot rather late what he's up to, because the entry (does that word make sense here? As in "the beginning"?) of the kick is the same he uses for other kicks. The "roundhouse part" comes at the last moment.

    Either way, you need another sparring partner.
    You know: Like one who actually can do something. Anything. ;)
  16. Van Zandt

    Van Zandt Mr. High Kick

    Easily spot one coming in? No. Its speed is the reason why it is so difficult to spot coming in, which is also the reason why it scores so frequently in tournament sparring. Heck, you have top level guys who can tell you exactly where they're going to hit you with a round kick and you still can't block it (Bill Wallace in the video below is an example - I know plenty of TKD guys who can kick as well as Bill, so it's not just because he's a mutant).

  17. Earl Weiss

    Earl Weiss Valued Member

    It's not just "Speed" it's the setup. By Set Up I mean foot work and feints which how affect how it comes and where it goes.

    If we are channeling Superfoot, one of his favorite Mantras is "You can't just throw and Hope" (Throw a technique and hope it lands) He would show combos and feints to create an opening.

    Then when it comes to "Speed" that can mean diiferent things. A. Shortest elapsed time from initiation to contact. B. Speed of foot on contact C. Perceived Speed meaning no hint it's coming so short time from being able to tell what's coming. A,B, C are independant factors that can be combined to greater and lesser extents to affect "Speed".
  18. Fireblade

    Fireblade New Member

    Thanks for the help.

    What routine can I expect from a Taekwondo class? I know each club is different but what would a common routine look like? Ex. Warm-up, kicking drills, sparring, forms, strength practice.

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