Derry Taekwondo: If you'd like to strengthen your mind and body, bolster your self-respect, learn some useful self-defence techniques and build your confidence, an ideal activity to take up is Taekwondo. This more modern of the martial arts was developed in Korea just after the Second World War.
Images of young children doing energetic kicks and rapid punching manoeuvres, are what spring to mind at the mere mention of Taekwondo. While the physical demands of Taekwondo may make it more suited to the younger generation, it can also be practiced by people of all ages. You do however need to be relatively fit and agile to fully enjoy all the complexities of Taekwondo.
Taekwondo originated in Korea in 1945. This mix of various martial arts techniques were practiced in some exciting new schools in Seoul called "kwans", established by a group of Korean martial artists. Taekwondo, which it ultimately became known as, mostly involves kicking movements, in particular jumping/spinning kicks, head-height kicks and fast kicking methods. Nowadays Derry Taekwondo classes adhere to this tradition.
Taekwondo has become extremely popular in Derry and all across the globe, with more than sixty million enthusiasts worldwide. Now an Olympic sport, Taekwondo is accessible to everyone, and signing up for your local Derry Taekwondo club or class is the best way to get yourself involved. While nobody would expect you to get to Olympic standard, you could certainly be one of the best Taekwondo exponents in Derry.
It appears that the most appealing element of Taekwondo is self-defence. This is no surprise when you take into account the rising levels of violence seen in city centres nowadays. Being capable of defending yourself is a key principle of Taekwondo, but this is tempered by exercising self-restraint and respecting others.
While its good to know that you're able to defend yourself any time you need to, you should be hoping that you never need to do this outside of your local Taekwondo club environment.
Your First Derry Taekwondo Lesson: For those of you who've never attempted Taekwondo before, you will no doubt be intrigued to know just what to expect from your first lesson. There may be variations to the following, depending on which Derry Taekwondo school you go to, but you can roughly expect; A warm up lasting 15-20 minutes, some technical training including learning some kicks, stances, hand attacks and blocks, learning some forms (or Poomse), a look at sparring including movement, timing and the targeting of attacks, and to finish off a warm down to prevent muscle spasms and cramping,
The 8 Basic Taekwondo Kicks (With Korean Names): Among the best known Taekwondo kicks that you'll learn initially include: Side Kick (Yeop Chagi), Roundhouse Kick (Dollyo Chagi), Crescent Kick (Bandal Chagi), Back Kick (Dwo Chagi), Push Kick (Meereo Chagi), Front Kick (Ap Chagi), Hook or Whip Kick (Huryeo Chagi), Axe Kick (Naeryeo Chagi).
If you want to join a Taekwondo club in Derry, you will also have to become a member of the sport's governing body, namely British Taekwondo.