The Taekwon-do Workout

A class begins with a brief warm-up, followed by well-rounded exercise of all fundamental skills, hyungs, and various advanced exercises as the instructor sees fit. Instructors should, at their own discretion, tailor advanced techniques to the class composition. The training method is first to learn fundamental techniques; to repeat those techniques in volume several days per week to begin to create the skills the techniques represent (a minimum of three days is recommended, though four is better; it may be acceptable for the beginning student to attend only two classes per week initially); and to proceed from there to the exercise of those skills in ever more creative and sophisticated ways that maximize the students repertoire of execution.

The efficiency of the class is predicated on the use of Taekwon-do techniques as the exercises that not only create self-defense skill, but develop the student’s physical strength, flexibility, and aerobic fitness as well. Older students may find, however, that additional strength training with weights will add resiliency as their bodies age, allowing them to continue their aggressive practice of Taekwon-do well past their physical prime.

The typical Taekwon-do workout described here should include enough repetitions that a student who attends 3-5 times per week will after three years find that he or she has executed each of the fundamental techniques approximately 10,000 times. It is at this point that students should be nearing readiness for their 1st-dan examination.

Students will typically spend 20-40 minutes in their aerobic range of exertion during this workout. An advanced student of brown-belt rank or above can expect to burn from 750-1000 calories in a typical one-hour class, depending on individual exertion.

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