Ultimate Martial Arts

*Tae Kwon Do * Hapkido * Korean Karate


Developed by Choi Yong-Sool (1904-1986), Korean master of Daito-Ryu Aiki Jujitsu as learned under the teachings of Takeda Sokaku. Though disputes exist on whether Choi was a head student or a servant in Takeda’s household, Choi returned to Korea after WWII and starting teaching his style of jujitsu in 1948 under the name Yawarwa. The name was eventually changed to Hapkido. As other students came to Choi from various martial arts backgrounds, the art started to include techniques like punches and kicks. Today, there are several lineages of Hapkido (Sin Moo, Jung Ki Kwan to name a few), but all trace their roots back to Choi Yong-Sul.

The Tree of Hapkido Knowledge

ROOT - Meaning Hapkido is comprised of 3 words, “Hap” meaning “to gather” or “hamonize”, Ki which is energy, which has many interpretations, and “Do” meaning “way”.

Hapkido is the “way of harmonizing energies” or “way of harvesting energies”. It is important to conceptualize harmony (like with music) and the art of gathering energies. Hapkido encourages a martial artist to overcome obstacles with efficiency, working with the energy inherent in that obstacle. Take for example a punch thrown from an opponent who comes in fast can be deflected in the same oncoming direction to throw the attacker off balance.

TRUNK – Principles of Hapkido

1. Water Principle - This principle can simply be to flow like water. Water finds the lowest level, and fits into the vessel. Hapkido encourages a martial artist to be flexible in a time of stress, and to be aware of surroundings and incoming energies, and to flow with or around them.

2. Circle Principle - Orbits, the Taeguk, human movement all have a circular principle. When working against an obstacle, a martial artist can use circular motions to position themselves or their attacker to a more advantageous position. This principle also comes into play when realizing the force required to move through the perimeter of a circle. Throws performed from extended angles require more force than throws that are up close due to the radius of force applied.

3. Nonresistance Principle (or Harmony Principle) - Simply put, for every action there is a reaction. For every push there is a pull, for every up there is a down, and so forth. When an opposing force comes at a martial artists, they can pull (or push) to accelerate the initial direction, then re-direct for their own intentions. This can also lead to an addition of velocities (attacker + defender) that can be put to the aid of the defenders intentions.

BRANCHES – Attributes of Martial Arts Techniques

1. Balance

2. Timing

3. Interval (spacing)

4. Mass

5. Speed

6. Power

7. Focus

Every martial artist is different, and also has certain strengths and weaknesses pertaining to the various attributes. One fighter may have great timing and spacing for technique, but fall short on power. Does this make them ineffective? No, but realizing the weakness of their form and application allows for them to compensate, as well as improve the weaker attributes. Hapkido is an art that encourages an understanding of these attributes per situation and per individual. At its core Hapkido is about improving oneself on all levels.


SPARRING – Our practice will incorporate 4 levels of sparring

NOTE! Sparring with join-locks can be very dangerous. Students MUST learn when to tap out to stop a technique. Students that do not tap out when “proper” locks are applied, will be restricted to working on the previous 3 levels of sparring, for their own safety and the safety of others.

1. Guided – to practice techniques, students will take turns using the techniques on a partner.

2. Push hands – style of sparring that focuses on shifting weight, and trains on learning an oppenent’s center of gravity and how to engage them. Also develops a sense of balance.

3. Gyorugi (with pads and throws) – no joint locks will be applied in this style of practice, due to padding that prevents effective locks, and to prevent injury of improper techniques that are placed too fast. Throws and sweeps will be allowed. Light head contact allowed if students are okay with it. Points for solid strikes or kicks to mid-section, 2 for light head contact, 2 points for sweep.

4. Gyorugi (randori-grappling) – free sparring. No one under the age of 12 for this style of sparring. This style of sparring is free of strikes, but incorporates sweeps, takedowns, and submissions. Matches will be pointed based on successful throw/sweep, or submission by tap-out. If submissions or holds are applied for more than 5 seconds (20 seconds for black belts) with no tap out, then 2 points will be awarded to the one in control and the match is reset to standing.

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