The Founder of Taekwon-Do

Between 1910 and 1945, Korea was forcibly occupied by Japan and ruled by the Japanese Empire. During this period, on November 9th, 1918, General Choi Hong Hi was born in Hwa Dae in the Myong Chun District of what is now the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. At the young age of 12 he became involved with the Kwang Ju Students’ Independence Movement and was expelled from school for agitating against the Japanese authorities and young Choi’s father sent him to study calligraphy with Mr. Han Il Dong, who was also a master of Taek Kyon, the ancient Korean art of foot fighting.

In 1937, General Choi was sent to Kyoto, Japan to further his education. It was here that he was introduced to Mr. Him and the Japanese martial art, Karate. With the outbreak of World War II, General Choi was enlisted into the Japanese army and was posted at Pyongyang, North Korea. During this time, he was implicated as the planner of the Korean Independence Movement and interned at a Japanese prison. It was here that Taekwon-Do as we know it today was developed by General Choi.

General Choi spent the rest of his life dedicated to the further developement and evolution of his art, until he passed away at 20:35 on the 15th June 2002 in Pyongyang in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.


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