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Hapkido

Date of Origin: 20th Century

Country of Origin: Korea

Technique: Bare Hands and Feet, Throwing -- Also Belt, Kubatan, Cane, and Short Staff

Hapkido literally translated: Hap means "coordination of harmony," Ki means "the essence of power," and Do means "the art" - in short, "the Way of Coordination and Internal Power."

Hapkido uses diversion or suppression and combines skeletal joint locks, pressure points, throws, kicks, and strikes for self-defense. The Hapkido practitioner uses their attacker's power against him. Hapkido emphasizes circular motion, non-resistive movements, and control of the opponent. Although Hapkido contains both outfighting and infighting techniques, the goal in most situations is to get inside for a close-in strike, lock, or throw.

The essence of Hapkido is to gain advantage through technique, avoiding the use of strength against strength. For example, if the attack is strong, one must receive it gently. If the attack is gentle, one must counter it powerfully. This makes this style more suitable for women, as they are not required to meet an attacker head on.

Some of the striking and kicking practice is form-like with no partner; however, most is done with a partner who is holding heavy pads that the student strikes and kicks full power. There is some weapons training for advanced students - primarily belt, kubatan, cane, and short staff. Forms and sparring are offered by some schools. There are no Hapkido competitions.

Many Hapkido techniques are unsuitable for use in sparring, as their use would result in injury, even when protective gear is used. There is generally an emphasis on physical conditioning and excercise, including "ki" exercises.