Is it the Olympics again this year? Time goes by so quickly.
Taekwondo has been a competitive Olympic sport for the last 20 years, and appeared before this at the Olympics as an exhibition sport.
Taekwondo first appeared as an exhibition sport in the 1988 Seoul Olympics.
Taekwondo became a competitive sport (people win medals) at the 2000 Sydney Olympic games.
There are eight Olympic categories for the sport, comprising of four different weight classes for men and four for women.
In the 2012 Olympics the 8 gold medals for Taekwondo were taken home by 8 different nations.
Athletes compete in three rounds of two minutes each.
Points are awarded for hits to the torso and head.
More challenging moves, such as a kick to the head or a spinning kick to the torso, get three points.
For the 2012 Olympics there were electronic detectors used for scoring in Taekwondo. These proved controversial, some claiming the encouraged lighter hits with less power, and that the sport’s techniques changed because of this.
For the first time ever the 2020 Tokyo Olympics will use a 360 degree camera system for TV replays and for judges to check scores.
Many people learn Taekwondo (TKD) for a variety of reasons. Some feel the need for self defense, or self discipline, but many simply enjoy it for the sake of sport.