At Vortexic, we offer classes in both Tae Kwon Do and Hapkido. Both styles are derived from traditional arts whose origins go back as far as the first century. Each one has a lot to offer and students often wonder where to focus their training. Should they take one or the other, or both?
The History of the Two Martial Arts
Both of these arts originated in Korea. Tae Kwon Do developed into its modern form during the 1950’s. At that time, Korea’s five major martial arts academies came together to develop a combat sport based on their combined techniques. Kicks and punches are taught through repeated drills and forms. Repetition helps with muscle memory and creates an instinctive response by the student, both in competition and in a combat situation.
Hapkido is an amalgam of several arts, including the Japanese Daito Ryu Aikijujutsu. It was defined by Grandmaster Choi Yong Sool who continued to develop it over the course of his life. Hapkido is particularly effective for self-defense on the street. The joint locks and strikes can control an attacker or debilitate him. Hapkido teaches strikes and defenses in the four ranges of combat. There are kicks, punches, traps, and grappling techniques.
Hapkido or Tae Kwon Do?
The very first thing to consider is the age of the student. Hapkido classes are not really appropriate for young children. Most of the trapping techniques must be executed with control. Young children may not have the ability to judge the amount of pressure they can apply without causing damage. For this reason, we recommend that Hapkido students be at least 12-years old.
Another thing you need to think about is your end goal. Are you interested in competing in tournaments? Are you wanting to improve fitness, balance, and strength? If so, then Tae Kwon Do is the perfect style for you. If you are more interested in practical self-defense for the street, then Hapkido is definitely the way to go.
Martial Arts Training for Children
Ideally, a young child would start their Tae Kwon Do training as early as 5-years old. Over the next seven years they would build stamina, balance, and control; moving up in rank as their skills increase. By the time they become a teenager, they should have mastered the basic skills taught in Tae Kwon Do. Kicks and punches should be controlled, clean, and precise. They will have also learned focus and self-control; two of the most important lessons martial arts has to offer.
As a teenager, with years of experience behind them, they would be in the perfect position to continue training in Tae Kwon Do and begin Hapkido training at the same time.
There is an advantage to having a good grounding in any martial art before you begin training in another. Liken it to learning a language. If you spend six months studying a foreign language and then move on to another one for six months, you may learn a few phrases in both of them, but you will never be able to hold a conversation in either one.
Do You Recommend Tae Kwon Do or Hapkido for Teenagers and Adults?
Both arts teach self-defense skills. Both of them improve your overall physical fitness. Tae Kwon Do could lead to competition, trophies, and possibly even college scholarships. Hapkido is all about practical, close-quarter combat. As a means of self-defense, it is one of the most effective martial arts out there. The two are completely different, yet they complement each other quite nicely.
So, consider your goals and visit a few classes. Decide whether Tae Kwon Do or Hapkido appeals to you more. One way or the other, you can only benefit from the time you spend in the dojang.
Sign Up For Hapkido Here
Sign Up for Tae Kwon Do Here