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I loved seeing the hwa rang do shout out. It was practiced by the youth movement Hwa Rang, which I assume was essentially very young soldiers, and there was an article about it in Black Belt which I have had for years.Uhg.. I read most of this thread.. I got tired of hearing the same things as I read it backwards..
At my TKD school we have been taught to twist our hips, though I heard someone say most TKD schools don't teach that. I assumed they did.. At the TKD place I attend, I train under a fifth dan. He is governed under a seventh dan I believe. I was taught when you choose to kick "through" a target your leg stays on the target as you're trying to go through. Lets say the target is a persons head. This causes the power transfered from your leg to go into the head but as your leg stays connected to the head some of the energy from your kick will bounce back into your leg thus causing a less powerful kick. So he taught us when you make that strong contact you snap your leg back so the power will have nowhere to escape. (this was explained to me when I was young, around 10 years old so I may have misinterpreted some things) I have no clue where this logic comes from or if it can/has been proven. This is simply something I was taught. As for using your hips when you kick, it's the same principle as when punching. The energy you gather moves fromm the ground up the legs and as your hips snap the energy forces itself out through the chosen contact point(the foot). I have heard some people complain that TKD kicks are useless. This simply is not true, the kick have been developed and are effective. The fact is not everyone does a said kick the same way therefore the kick isn't preformed as it was made to. I feel like an idiot explain these things since it feels like everyone says I'm wrong.
I also heard someone say something about how since TKD is one of the newest martial arts it isn't something that derives from martial arts that use "brutality". Early Tae Kwon Do was developed from the ancient art of Hwa Rang do which is an extremely "brutal" martial art. Most serious fights being only to the death it focuses on punches, kicks, locks, and fatal techniques. I don't know much more about this so I won't go to deeply into it.
I will save more talk about this when I hear more and/or get responses. xD
I respect each and every martial art equally. In my eyes all martial arts are equal in their own respects, the only difference is the people who practice them.
By the way, I am a first degree, second level in TKD with 5-7years of experience(not saying thats alot).
As you may also know there is a palgwe hyung called hwa rang.