"The way of the Sword"
The present form of Kumdo uses "juk do"(4 split bamboo sword) and the "ho goo"(the head and body gear). In Kumdo, if you receive a blow, the battle is over. Under this circumstance one's attitude and spiritual understanding of oneself is most crucial. The statement of "never underestimate your opponent" cannot be more true for Kumdo than anything else.
The art of the sword in Korea evolved from a martial art heritage reaching back more than three thousand years to the time of the Bronze Age. In 1896 during the era of modernization, the art of the sword, also known as "Ghihuck-Gum," was selected as a mandatory training requirement for the newly established police academy. From there on, Kumdo, the modern amalgamation of "the art of the sword" and "the way of righteousness" from the Taoist philosophy, was developed to be practiced by some as a sport and by others as a means of character development or spiritual refinement. By the early 20th century, Kumdo training had adopted and utilized a practice weapon made of bamboo and lightweight armor that had been developed by the Japanese. This method of practice largely replaced the earlier, more dangerous, methods of training. Yet, the Kumdo popularity had been limited until early 1960 when the practice armor could be mass produced with the latest materials.
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