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Taekwondo Terminology

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Taekwondo Terminology

A Summary of Korean Terminology for TaeKwonDo

Definition of TaeKwonDo

"Tae" means "foot" or "to strike with the feet". "Kwon" means "hand", or "to strike with the hand". "Do" means discipline, art, or way. Hence TaeKwonDo (foot-hand-way) means literally "the art of the feet and the hands" or "the art of kicking and punching". Different schools and/or styles may impose different variations on the formal definition however. For example, some styles add the words "self defense" to the literal definition and/or throw in some form of the phrase "physical and mental training".

Korean Counting

There are two different numbering systems that are used by Koreans. The first numbering system is used when counting, or when only speaking of the numbers themselves. The first ten numbers in this system are as follows:

1 : hanah
2 : dool
3 : set
4 : net
5 : dasot
6 : yasot
7 : ilgop
8 : yadol
9 : ahop
10 : yool

The stress in "hanah", "dasot", and "yasot" is on the first syllable, in "ilgop", "yadol", and "ahop" on the second. In counting cadence in TaeKwonDo, this is so emphasized that the other syllable frequently almost disappears (e.g., "han", "das", "yos", "lgop", "hop", etc.).

The other numbering system (which is of Chinese origin) is used in most other cases and is often used where Americans would use ordinal numbers (such as "first", "second", etc ...). For example, this second numbering system is used when describing a person's rank: a first degree black belt would be an "il dan". The first ten numbers in this numbering system are as follows:

1 : il
2 : ee
3 : sahm
4 : sah
5 : oh
6 : ryook
7 : chil
8 : pal
9 : koo
10 : ship

The final `l' in "chil" and "pal" isn't rounded, like an American `l' .... It's a much shorter sound, sort of like the initial `l' in "let", but even shorter. It's not like the `l' in "ball".

When pronouncing the word "ship", you must not emphasize the "sh" sound. It's almost more like "sip" with a sort of a lisp. If you pronounce it like "sh" in "shell", then you are referring to sexual intercourse.

Even though this second numbering system may correspond to ordinal numbers in English in some cases, these are not ordinal numbers. Koreans use a separate set of words for ordinal numbers.

Basic Body Parts

mom : body
kwanjeol : joint
ulgool : face & head
muh ree : head
noon : eye
gui : ear
ko : nose
in joong : philtrum
eep : mouth
tuhk : chin
mokoomeong : throat
mok : neck
ouka : shoulder
myung chi : solar plexus
pahl : arm
pahlkup : elbow
pahlmahk : forearm
ahn pahlmahk : inner side of forearm
bahkat pahlmahk : outer side of forearm
meet pahlmahk : palm side of forearm
wi pahlmahk : back side of forearm
deung pahlmahk : back of forearm
sahnmahk : wrist
sahn : hand
sahnkal : outside edge of hand (knifehand)
sahnkal deung : inside edge of hand (ridgehand)
sahn deung : back hand
joomok : fist
sahnkahrak : finger
sahnkeut : fingertip
momtong : trunk (middle section)
huri : waist
ahrae : lower body (low section)
noolro : groin
dahree : leg
mooreup : knee
ahp jung kang yi : shin
bahl mahk : ankle
bahl : foot (or feet)
bahldung : instep
bahlbong oh ri : arch of foot
bahl nahl : outside edge of foot
an bahl nahl : inside edge of foot
bahl badak : sole of foot
ahp chook : ball of foot
dwi koomchi : heel
dwi chook : bottom of heel
bahlkeut : toes

Tenets of TaeKwonDo

ye ui : courtesy
yom chi : integrity
in nae : perseverance
kuk gi : self-control (also "jah jeh")
baekjool : indomitable spirit (also "boolgool eui jung shin")

Body Movements

mom omgigi : movement of the body
mahki : block
chagi : kick
chirugi : thrust (or punch)
chigi : strike (with the hand)
jeek gi : strike (with the foot)
bahk gi : strike (with the head)
sahn ki sool : hand technique
bahl ki sool : foot technique
kyorugi : sparring
bituro : twisting
gamya : stepping (also "omkyuh didigi")
kuht neun : walking
uro : moving in a particular direction (e.g. "ahp uro gamya" - stepping forward)
bang hyang bakoogi : changing direction
bitkyuh surgi : escaping
tdwim yu : jumping
dora : to turn
dolmyo : spinning
mee keul myu : sliding (also "mee kul gi")
jupgi : holding/grabbing
donzigi : throwing
goorugi : rolling/tumbling
pyihagi : dodging
hecho : spreading
moyo : gathering
bojoo : covering

Directions

oo : right (also "oh-ruen")
joa : left (also "wen")
ahp : front
ahn : inner
bahkat : outer
bahndae : reverse
dwi : back
ahnuro : inward
bahkuro : outward
whee : high (up)
whee uro : upward
guande : middle
ulgool : high section (also "sahngdahn")
momtong : middle section (also "chungdahn")
ahrae : low section (also "hahdahn")

Rank

kagup : rank
gup : grade
dan : degree
simsa : grading (or promotional) test
simsa kwan : examiner
dan gup jedo : system of rank

Hand Positions

sahnkal : knifehand
sahnkal jecho : knifehand with palm up
sahnkal deung : ridgehand (also "oppun sahnkal")
sahn bahtong : palm heel (also "bahtong sahn")
sahn deung : back hand (also "deung sahn")
ah keum sahn : arc hand
galkwi sahn : ripping (or raking) hand
jipke sahn : pincers hand
joomok : fist
deung joomuk : back fist
yup joomuk : side fist
me joomuk : hammer-fist
inju joomuk : forefinger one-knuckle fist
bamchu joomuk : middle-finger one-knuckle fist
doo bam joomuk : two-knuckle fist
pyun joomuk : flat (or open) fist
omji joomuk : thumb-knuckle fist
kwan soo : spearhand (also "pyun sahnkeut")
sahnkeut : spearfinger
gawi sahnkeut : scissors-shaped spearfingers

Hand Attacks

bahro chirugi : straight (return) punch
bahndae chirugi : reverse punch
gullgi chirugi : hook punch
yung seuk chirugi : combination (consecutive) punch
doo bun chirugi : double punch
sae bun chirugi : triple punch
sahnkeut chirugi : spearfinger thrust
sewo chirugi : vertical punch
gotjang chirugi : vertical fist punch
dolrya chirugi : round punch
dwijubo chirugi : upset punch
soteum chirugi : spring punch
nehryuh chirugi : downward punch
chi chirugi : uppercut punch
jae chuh chirugi : upper punch (also "jae chin chirugi")
doo joomuk chirugi : doublefist punch
dikootja chirugi : `U' (or `C') shaped punch (hi-lo)
sosum chirugi : double uppercut punch
keumgang chirugi : diamond-shaped punch
nalgeh chirugi : wing-shaped punch

Blocks

bahkat palmahk mahki : outer forearm block
ahn palmahk mahki : inner forearm block
sahng palmahk mahki : twin forearm block
ahnuro mahki : inward block
bahkuro mahki : outward block
ahrae mahki : low block
cho kyo mahki : rising block
daebi mahki : guarding block
bituro mahki : twisting block
gahwi mahki : scissors block
keumgang mahki : diamond-shaped (Hercules) block
gutjha mahki : `9'-shaped block (cross block)
yeot pero mahki : `X'-shaped block (also "kyo cha mahki")
santeul mahki : mountain-shaped block (also "osanteul mahki")
weh santeul mahki : part mountain-shaped block
utgallruyuh mahki : cross block (also "utgiruh mahki")
hechuh mahki : scattered block (or wedge block)
hwang so mahki : ox (or "bull") block
bahtangsahn nooluh mahki : pressing down block
deuluh oll ryu mahki : upward scooping fist block

Kicks

cha olligi : stretching kick
jillo chagi : thrusting kick
ahp chagi : front kick
yup chagi : side kick
dolrya chagi : round (roundhouse) kick
dwi chagi : back kick
bahndae dolrya chagi : reverse round kick ("hook kick" for some styles)
dwi dolrya chagi : back round kick ("hook kick" for some styles)
gullgi chagi : hook kick (also "golcho chagi" or "golro chagi")
bahndall chagi : crescent kick (literally "half moon kick")
hoohrio chagi : wheel kick
beet chagi : slant (or instep) kick
bahn dolrya chagi : half round kick (also "instep kick")
beakya chagi : slap kick
nehryuh jeek gi : ax kick; literally "downward foot strike"
hwe jun chagi : swing kick
mil a chagi : pushing kick (also "mil gi chagi")
gokwang i chagi : pickax kick
pyojuk chagi : target kick
dolmyo chagi : spinning kick
tdwim yah chagi : jumping kick
yung seuk chagi : combination (consecutive) kick
meekulmyu chagi : sliding kick (also "mikulgi chagi")
goollruh chagi : rolling kick
natgeh tdwim yu chagi : hopping kick
nalla chagi : flying kick (also "goong jung chagi")
gahwi chagi : scissors kick
illja chagi : linear kick
japgo chagi : holding (grasp) kick
ohpo chagi : falling kick (leg sweep)
nachu oh chagi : stooping kick

Stances

sohgi : stance
jah seh : posture (or stance) [used instead of "sohgi" in some styles]
ahnjun sohgi : sitting stance
ahp sohgi : front stance
ahp koo bi sohgi : front bent knee stance (also just "ahp koo bi")
dwi sohgi : back stance
dwi koo bi sohgi : back bent knee stance (also just "dwi koo bi")
beom sohgi : cat (or tiger) stance (also "goyang-i sohgi")
kuht neun sohgi : walking stance
juchoom sohgi : horseback riding stance ("kima sohgi" in some styles)
mot sohgi : fighting stance
kyorugi sohgi : sparring stance
choon bi sohgi : ready stance (also "pyeonhi sohgi")
gibon sohgi : basic stance
guande sohgi : middle stance
naranhee sohgi : parallel stance
niun ja sohgi : `L'-stance
gojang sohgi : fixed (lower-back) stance
sa sun sohgi : diagonal stance
gyuttari sohgi : fixed balance (or bent knee) stance
koh ah sohgi : crossed foot stance
kyo cha sohgi : `X'-stance
mo ah sohgi : close stance
joong-rib sohgi : neutral stance
dong yuk sohgi : dynamic stance
cha yun sohgi : natural stance
chagi sohgi : kicking stance
hahktari sohgi : crane stance (also "ue bal sohgi")

Sparring

kyorugi : (free) sparring
han bun kyorugi : one step sparring
doo bun kyorugi : two step sparring
sae bun kyorugi : three step sparring
bahn ja yu kyorugi : semi free sparring
machu oh kyorugi : arranged free sparring
jeon : round (competition segment)
shihap : bout or match
jeum : point
shi gan : time out
keum bahk : out of bounds
kyong go : warning
gam jeum : deduction of point
shil kyuk : disqualification
boo sang : injury
seung : win
bi kim : tie
chung : blue
hong : red
hin : white
jajun bahl : use of footwork to dodge a technique
nachugi : body evasion by "ducking"

Forms

poomse : form (pronounced "poom-say"), also "hyung"
tul : patterns
jang : similar to a page or a chapter
yung seuk : combination
sa bang hyang : four direction

Uniform

dhee : belt
dobok : uniform
ha'i : training pants

Equipment

hogoo : chest protector (also "bohogoo")
sahn boho jang kap : protective gloves
pahlmahk bohodae : forearm guard
jung kang yi bohodae : shin guard
nang shim bohodae : groin cup
muh ree bohodae : protective head gear
eep bohodae : mouth guard

Commands

cha ryuht : attention
choon bi : ready
bah ro : return to starting position
dwi uro dorah : about face
dorah : turn
elosoh : stand
gomahn : stop (also "mum cho")
geuk gi hyang ha yoh : face the flag
jwa woo hyang woo : face each other
sah bum nim keh : face instructor/master
sun bae nim keh : face senior student
simsa kwan nim keh : face examiner/tester
dobok dahnjung : fix your uniform
dhee dahnjung : fix your belt
hai sahn : class dismissed (also "hae cho")
jonglee : line up (also "ji hap" and "jung yul")
kyung nae : bow
ahnjoe : sit
kool o angi : kneel (kneeling)
bah ro angi : sit in lotus position (yoga posture)
bahl bah kwah : switch your stance (switch your feet)
koo ryung op see : in your own time
seijak : begin
shiuh : relax
kalyeo : break (or stop)
kae sok : continue

Common Phrases

ye : yes (also "ne")
anio : no
kahm sa hamnida : thank you
komap sumnida : less formal form of "thank you"
cheon maeneyo : you're welcome (literally "Don't mention it!")
cheuk ka hamnida : congratulations!
ahnyong hasimnika : How are you? (literally "Are you well?" or "Are you at peace?")
ahnyong hasayo : less formal form of "How are you?"
yoboseyo : hello (used on the phone or to get someone's attention; literally "Please look here!")
ahnyonghee gasipsiyo : good-bye (to the person who is leaving); literally "Go in peace!"
ahnyonghee gyesipsiyo : good-bye (to the person who is staying); literally "Stay in peace!"
ahnyonghee gasayo : less formal form of "good-bye" (to the person who is leaving)
ahnyonghee gyesayo : less formal form of "good-bye" (to the person who is staying)
pangap seumnida : Pleased to meet you!
toh poepkeseoyo : See you later!
eoseo osayo : Welcome!
choesong hamnida : I'm sorry
mian hamnida : less formal form of "I'm sorry!"
shillye hamnida : Excuse me! (asking forgiveness for an impolite act)
kwaen chanayo : That's all right
ahlge seoyo : I understand
moreuge seoyo : I don't understand
chaemi isseoyo : It is fun (or interesting)!

Titles

do joo nim : founder (of the art)
kwan jang nim : grandmaster
chung sah nim : chief instructor (or "chief master")
sah bum nim : instructor (or "master")
sah boo nim : more intimate and respectful form of "sah bum nim"; literally "teaching father"
kyo sah nim : teacher (also "seon saeng nim")
sun bae nim : senior student
hu bae nim : junior student
hak saeng : student
suryun saeng : trainee
jeja : pupil
joo sim : referee
bu sim : judge
bae sim : juror
kae sim : time keeper
ki rohk : recorder

Miscellaneous

dojang : place where one trains (house of discipline)
gong-kyok : offense
hosinsool : self-defense
mukyum : meditation
kihap : yell
jung shin yuk : mental strength, or martial art spirit (also "moodo jung shin")
jung shin dong il : concentration of the mind
jung shin soo yang : development (training) of the mind
jung do : the "right" way (correctness of action)
sim shin dahn ryun : mind and body discipline
chung myung kwon : development (training) of the body, mind, and spirit
chi shik : knowledge of mind and thoughts
heng dong : execution (action) of the body and its techniques
pil seung : certain victory
il sok pil sai : one strike must kill
ho hyoop : breathing
shim ho hyoop : breathing control (deep breathing)
himm : force or power
ki : life-energy
dahnjun : the center of your "ki"
bokboo : the stomach area where "ki" is generated.
choong sim : center of gravity
chojum : focus (focal point) of your energy
jeung ga : increase (to strengthen or augment)
kyuk pa : breaking (the art of breaking boards, bricks, and tiles)
shibum : demonstration (or exhibition)
pyugi : stretching
ye jol : etiquette
jon gyung : respect
choong sung : loyalty (also "eui ri")
jung jhik : honesty
kahjok : family