What is Hapkido ?


An overview:

Hap: Union, Co-ordination
Ki: Vital Energy
Do: Way/Path

This is the meaning of this Korean Martial Art well diversified in its basics principles.
Hap Ki Do consists of circular movements including torsions (articular stimulus), kicks, punches, falls,mobilisations, locks and pressure points. These pressure points correspond to the meridian of internal organs. Weapons are used in more advanced stages.

The Korean Martial Arts philosophy is, in general, defined in four points:
1. Honesty and correct conduct
2. Loyalty to parents and country
3. Bravery in battles
4. Security and help others

From these principles, the followers of this philosophy were capable of sacrifing their own interests, work, family, country and friends keeping their personal satisfaction as their last objective.

To understand the movements and techniques of Hap Ki Do three elements (theories) must be studied :

Yu – Water
The water simbolizes many things in Korea. One of them is adaptability. Water never fights against the objects that it finds in its way. There is no conflict. It never loses his form. Man should learn to adapt in the same way to survive the obstacles he will eventually confront in his life.

Won – Circle
The circle, apart from the natural and continous moviment, it also simbolises the perfomer objective to progress. When he reaches his objective (black belt) his evolution will only be completed when he returnes to the starting point, with the advantage of the experience aquired. New circles will then be formed, much smaller like spirals wich will lead the perfomer not forward but upward.

Wha – Harmony
When training Hap Ki Do the simultaneous combination of body, mind and technique must always be present. Harmony is the main element of this practice. In aquiring harmony within oneself it makes it possible to aquire harmony with the adversary. The next step is learn to harmonize with the situation. The final task is to combine the harmony developed within oneself, the oponent and situation with the adversary’s technique.