61 years ago Taekwon-Do was born.
In 1955, a Board made up of politicians, military, businessmen, historians, masters of Korean martial arts and social leaders approved the name of Taekwon-Do to designate the National Martial Art of Korea.
It was the first step to regain national pride for that country, after having suffered a foreign occupation.
But a part of the dream that General Choi Hong Hi had for Taekwon-Do, was evidenced only a few years later, when this Art was present in several countries in Asia and Europe, a fact that laid the foundations for shaping the International Taekwon-Do Federation, which occurred in 1966.
Another dream of the Father of Taekwon-Do was to tend to the excellence through continuous evolution and opening up to all changes which will improve the effectiveness of his art, a goal that he left embodied in the phrase “Anyone who believes that has fully complied with their duty, soon will perish”.
After the physical disappearance of General Choi, 14 years ago, first by the Honourable Russell Maclellan, then by GM Tran Trieu Quan, and from the latter’s death in 2010, by myself, we been trying that Taekwon-Do do not lose that overcoming momentum, which with a strong will and effort, was imprinted by its creator.
In retrospect, we see that we have 61 years of a rich history, of relevant facts and the permanent memory of people who are no longer with us, but have left their contribution.
Transiting the present, we see that we have 61 years of experience and that we have the same passion of those pioneers to continue developing and evolving our beloved Art.
And facing the future, as being current responsible of leading Taekwon-Do, I think that we all will be able to see, that with every birthday and although it seems a mere wordplay, Taekwon-Do will not become increasingly “old”, but increasingly bigger”.
And that will inevitably happen because we are an experienced Martial Art, that learn from their mistakes and overcomes them. Taekwon-Do will become bigger, growing by the hand of Instructors, Masters and Grand Masters who do not stop, who evolve and exceed day after day, year after year, as was dreamed 61 years ago by General Choi Hong Hi.
As I dream in the present.
¡Happy birthday, dear Taekwon-Do!
GM Pablo Trajtenberg