04 December 2010

North Korea ITF Demonstration Team 2003

I found these videos on YouTube of the demonstration by the North Korea ITF Taekwon-Do Demonstration Team during the ITF World Championships in Thessalonika, Greece, in 2003. I've actually seen this demo before, one of the South African players that attended the championships that year is a photographer and he took his HD film camera with him. It was a wonderfully inspiring demonstration and set a standard for demonstrations worldwide. Since this 2003 demonstration I have seen many other demonstration teams incorporate similar routines.

In the first video the team members are introduced, they then all do the pattern Kwang-Gae together, followed by a nice Model Sparring demonstration. The purpose of Model Sparring is to show-off Taekwon-Do techniques, often involving "slow motion" movements, which helps the audience to better appreciate the technique.

The second video clip depicts a Self-Defence demonstration by one of the female demonstration members. It is followed by a Special Technique Breaking demonstration. Special Technique Breaking focusses on the agility of the practitioner and often involves jumping techniques. Third in this video clip is a demonstration of the pattern Ul-Ji. Another dexterous Special Technique Breaking demonstration follows.

The third video begins with a Self-Defence demonstration, with one "hero" against three "villains." This demonstration became the basic format for the new Self-Defence Demonstration Category included into the World Championships. Thereafter a female demonstrator shows off her Special Technique Breaking skills. A demonstrator then performs the pattern Choong-Moo and afterwards illustrates how this pattern applies to four attackers. Next a male team member performs some Special Technique Breaking followed by a Power Technique Break, in which he breaks two bricks placed vertically on top op each other, using a knife-hand strike.

The fourth video begins with two female practitioners defending against attackers. In part of the routine they use their handbags as part of the self-defence, mostly to distract the attacker by throwing the back into his face. Also, apart from the general use of strikes and kicks, a variety of joint-locks and breaks are employed. Since joint-locks and breaks are an often neglected part of Taekwon-Do, I especially enjoyed seeing them employed here. An impressive Power Breaking routine follows. Next up is a Special Technique Breaking demonstration of two twin foot kicks. A twin foot kick is a kick in which you kick the target with both feet at the same time. First in the video, the kicker's vertical jump ability without a run-up is shown. He breaks a board above a person's head using a jumping twin foot kick. For the second demonstration his horizontal jumping ability is shown as he jumps over the shoulders of three pairs of people to break a board with a twin foot kick on the other side. This video clip ends with an action packed Self-Defence demonstration.

The final video clips starts with a demonstration of a Taekwon-Do guy's conditioned body. He is hit with poles over different parts of his musculature. This is followed by a Power Breaking routine in which bricks and tiles are shattered using different hand techniques. The demonstration ends with a group performance of the pattern Sam-Il.

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