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Directory of Tang Soo Do and Soo Bahk Do Resources

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The first evidence of Tang Soo Do, an ancient form of Korean martial arts, appeared during the Three Kingdom era (57 BC-935 AD) as Hwa Rang Do. The indigenous martial arts quietly developed through generations of the Korean people. During some eras it flourished and other times it diminished, according to the political, economic or cultural environment. The art was known by various names throughout the eras as Hwa Rang Do, Moo Sul, Kyuck Too Ki, Soo Bahk Ki, Soo Byuck Ki, and Taek Kyun respectively. Following Korea's independence in 1945 the Korean martial arts were again merged and flourished throughout the entire Korean Peninsula. Many organizations were founded with various names such as Soo Bahk Do, Tang Soo Do, and Tae Soo Do. At the beginning of the modern era of Korean martial arts, Tang Soo Do was the most popular term for these arts. However, at that time, the Korean political leader was concerned about establishing Korean values based on Korean nationalism. The political leaders recognized the popularity of Korean martial arts around the world, but were opposed to the use of the name Tang Soo Do for the art as it sounded like a Chinese martial art. The first word "Tang" could be interpreted as representing the Chinese Tang Dynasty (617-907 AD). In 1964, a small government-sponsored group created a new name for the Korean martial arts, Tae Kwon Do.


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