The (mental) joys of Hapkido

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In this blog I’ve spent a lot of time writing about the history of Hapkido and the factors that have gone into it such as the history of Korea, the philosophy of Hapkido and what makes it my favourite martial art. What I haven’t spent too much time writing about has been how the martial art has affected me personally and that’s what I wanted to discuss in this blog post.

I have been a fan of the sport for many years now and it’s also become a big part of my social life by virtue of me having met many people through going to competitions and getting to know people where I practise Hapkido myself. That has been one of the biggest rewards of the sport. I suppose that is probably true for other people who join clubs to practise their passions, be it photography, cooking, horseback riding, debate clubs or anything else under the sun. As social beings we tend to enjoy sharing our passions with one another and regardless of what one is into I think that’s one fo the best ways to make lasting friendships.

For me however, what makes Hapkido different and special (again, I’m only speaking for myself here) is the state of mind that it has produced in me. Or not so much produced as allowed me to cultivate. I find that through practising this specific martial art I’ve been able to find peace of mind in a piece of my mind, if you’ll excuse the eye pun.

I’ve talked to friends who have experienced the same thing with yoga, but for me it only works with Hapkido. I like the way I can centre myself and really mediate through martial arts. Obviously martial arts tune one’s body the way a mechanic tunes a car, but they also do that to the mind.

On days when I’m particularly stressed, for example, I have found that the best and perhaps the only way for me to really feel at peace and at ease again is to do some Hapkido, even if it’s in my pyjamas at home before bed. Having an activity that helps clear one’s mind is incredibly helpful and while Hapkido has done marvels to help me stay in shape, I need to emphasis that it’s also been great in keeping me sane!