1. #1

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    Shotokan Karate or TaeKwonDo?

    I see many people hating on Taekwondo, some even referring to it as the worst art for self defense out there. I have studied both, but only for a few months, and as I see it Shotokan is even worse than Taekwondo for self defense.

    In shotokan, hits must not land at all or only tap your opponent.
    In taekwondo, everything is full contact.
    In shotokan fights are stopped after one hit is landed.
    Taekwondo has continuous fighting.

    The only advantage I see that Shotokan has is face punching, but the face punches are light to no contact, which will give you a horrible habit.

    So am I missing something here? Would someone please explain to me why people consider Shotokan a better form of self defense than Taekwondo?

  2. #2
    DerAuslander's Avatar
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    I assume you're referring only to Olympic Taekwondo with the full-contact comment.

    Both arts, while coming from the same root, have diverged drastically. They serve two very different purposes in training.

    Olympic Taekwondo, while being continuous and full-contact, is a very limited sport. This transfers over to its applications to self-defense, MMA, or more broad striking competitions such as kickboxing.

    While you will learn how to kick full-contact, and learn how to take kicks at full-contact, you will learn little in the way of punching for actual combat. You will gain in your ability to judge distance, and develop timing, but those will be artificially set for a distance that deals only in long-range kicking techniques. You will gain next to nothing in punching range, and absolutely nothing in clinching range. Also, because your kicking techniques have been developed in this long-range, the majority of them will need to be cast aside when moving into self-defense training, and those that don't will likely need great modification. While there is always some bleed over, training Olympic Taekwondo will not prepare you for self-defense, it will prepare you for Olympic Taekwondo.

    Shotokan varies greatly from dojo to dojo and association to association. Some do actually fight much closer to full contact, some under rulesets closer to Kyokushin. Others are very much limited contact. Without a standardization such as an Olympic ruleset, the best I can tell you is that some is good, and some is bad.

  3. #3

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    Yeah, that's true, but you still get to use fists to the chest and stomach, although I don't understand why most Olympic Taekwondo fighters don't use them.

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mage View Post
    Yeah, that's true, but you still get to use fists to the chest and stomach, although I don't understand why most Olympic Taekwondo fighters don't use them.
    Body punches are harder for the judges to see, and they get scored lower when they are recognized. As a result, a lot TKD Olympians have evidently adopted the strategy of swinging for the home run every time instead of the safer but less impressive tactic of single,single,single,single...

  5. #5
    It is Fake's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mage View Post
    Yeah, that's true, but you still get to use fists to the chest and stomach, although I don't understand why most Olympic Taekwondo fighters don't use them.

    http://library.thinkquest.org/J002862/Tae.htm

    There may be changes but, this is the quickest point link I could:

    Punch To Body: 1 Point
    Flying Punch To Body: 2 Points
    Kick To Body: 2 Points
    Kick To Head: 2 Points
    Flying Kick To Body: 2 Points
    Look at this list and I think you can figure out why.

  6. #6

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    Der pretty much nailed it , sounds like you went to one of the better tkd schools and one of the crappier shotokan ones.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by bassai View Post
    Der pretty much nailed it , sounds like you went to one of the better tkd schools and one of the crappier shotokan ones.
    Yeah, I guess that's it.

    Thanks for the info guys.

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