Hapkido is a dynamic martial art of Korean origin. Its name means literally, “The way of coordination and internal power” (Hap, meaning coordinated, Ki, meaning power (internal energy), and Do, meaning the art or way). Hapkido is the combination of two Korean Martial Arts – Yool Sool which comes from the Japanese art known as Daito-Ryu Aiki-Jutsu and Tae Kyon which is an ancient Korean Kicking Skill that was widespread during the time of the Three Kingdoms. It is a complete martial art in that it consists of dynamic striking and kicking techniques, very similar to Tae Kwon Do, both hard and soft style deflection techniques, throws, takedowns, ground-fighting, and extensive joint locking techniques. There is also the use of traditional weapons, including a sword, rope, nunchaku, cane, short stick, and staff.
Hapkido is based on three important basic principles:
- Circular Motion (The principle of the circle): All movements are round. The Hapkido fighter moves as inside a ball. Influencing forces are rerouted from the outside and neutralized at the surface of the “ball”.
- Water Principle (The principle of the river): As the river, which adapts extremely flexibly to the landscape and nevertheless in the moment the buildup develops an enormous strength, the Hapkido fighter also sensitively reacts to his opponent, in order to let his pent-up “Ki” flow by the technique into the opponent in the crucial moment.
- Non-resistance (The principle of influence): By lightning movements, which hardly can be noticed, the aggressor is arranged to reflex counter movements, which then are used in a subsequent technique.
Hapkido contains both long and close range fighting techniques, utilizing jumping kicks and percussive hand strikes at longer ranges and pressure point strikes, joint locks, or throws at closer fighting distances. Hapkido emphasizes circular motion, non-resisting movements, and control of the opponent. Practitioners seek to gain advantage through footwork and body positioning to employ leverage, avoiding the use of strength against strength. Once the opponent’s balance has been taken, there are a myriad of techniques to disable and subdue the opponent. Hapkido is widely taught to military and law enforcement because of the effectiveness against armed and unarmed attacks.
In addition to learning effective self-defense, Hapkido is a dynamic art that provides the student with the means to improve their physical fitness, awareness, flexibility and self-confidence. As the student progresses through our program, he or she will gain the confidence, awareness, and attitude to avoid confrontation and de-escalate a situation. We teach traditional Hapkido and we follow the Korea Hapkido Total Federation rules.