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Present Day Taekwondo
Upon liberation of Korea from the Japanese colonial rule after World
War II, the Korean people began recovering the thought of self-reliance
and the traditional folkloric games resumed their popularity. Song
Duk-Ki, afore-mentioned master of Taekkyon, presented a demonstration
of the martial art before the first republic of Korea president Syngman
Rhee on the occasion of his birthday, clearly distinguishing Taekwondo
from the Japanese Karate which had been introduced by the Japanese
Martial art experts began opening Taekwondo gymnasiums all over the
country and after the end of Korean War [1950-1953] Taekwondo was
popularized among the dan-grade black-belters within the country,
also dispatching about 2,000 Taekwondo masters to more than 100 countries.
After all, following the nomination of Taekwondo as a national martial
art in 1971, the present Kukkiwon was founded in 1972 to be used as
the headquarters as well as the site of various Taekwondo competitions.
Then a year later, in 1973 the World Taekwondo Federation was established.
In 1973, the biennial World Taekwondo Championships was organized.
In 1984, Taekwondo was admitted to the Asian games as an official
event. In 1975, Taekwondo was accepted as an official sport by the
U.S Amateur Athletic Union [AAU] and also admitted to the General
Association of International Sports Federations [GAISF], followed
by the adoption of official sports event by the International Council
of Military Sports [CISM] in 1976. The WTF became an IOC-recognized
sports federation in 1980, making Taekwondo an Olympic sport. Then
the adoption of Taekwondo as an official event was followed by the
world games in 1981, the pan-American games in 1986, and finally by
the Sydney 2000 Olympics in 1994 and then Athens 2004 Olympic Games
in 2000. On November 29, 2002, the 114th IOC Session also confirmed
the inclusion of Taekwondo in the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games.
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