The 6th International Taekwondo Symposium ended on the 3rd of September at the Soul Olympic Parktel.
The symposium ended in a great success, with the presence of IOC member Patrick Ckamunda, IOC International Cooperation & Development Director Tomas Amos Ganda Sithole, WTF President Choue, the 5 continental federation presidents, and around 200 national and international professors, teachers and leaders of Taekwondo.
In the last day of the symposium, Mr Sithole said: “I hope that Taekwondo, which puts into practice the Olympic Values Education Program, will keep contributing to the Olympic movement, breaking barriers of race, religion, and culture.”
TPF Chairman Bae said that “I hope that through the topic of ‘Olympic spirit and Taekwondo’, we will have the opportunity to learn and discuss about how the Olympic values are put into practice through Taekwondo, how it contributes to youth education, and about the values of Taekwondo, an already global sport.”
Dr Ken Min, from UC Berkeley, said that, “with the completion of the Taekwondowon 2013, there is a great meaning in the celebration of the symposium in Korea, mother country of Taekwondo”
General Ahmed Fouly, President of the AFTU, gave the first presentation, with the title “Olympic Spirit and Taekwondo”. He said that “mutual understanding, friendship, unity these are at the core of the Olympic spirit, and the WTF is working to promote them through education and training, in order to unite Taekwondo and the Olympic movement”.
During Session I, Dr Franjo Prot, professor of the University of Zagreb, gave a presentation about the “Implementation of Olympic values through Taekwondo”. He talked about the similarity in Olympic and Taekwondo values, and emphasized the important role of Taekwondo athletes, teachers, coaches, trainers, judges, parents etc. in enhancing the Olympic values.
Dong-Hwan Kim, Dean of Hanyang University, participated in the panel, said that the IOC’s Olympic Values Education Program have to be combined with the Taekwondo values, so that sports culture and education together help young people learn about the Olympic values.
Another panelist, Dr Russell Ahn from UC Berkeley said that the Olympic values are very similar to those of Taekwondo, and that Taekwondo is leader in the Olympic movement.
Dr Joong-Heon Kim from Yongin University said that, “sport teaches collaboration and unity, and this is of great importance in today’s world, in which social instability is rising and the youth is more exposed to the harmful effects of the development of IT. There needs to be a development of new activities related to Taekwondo, which the youth can enjoy in safe places.”
In Session II, Dr Kyoo-Hyung from Gyemyeong University gave a presentation on youth personality education. He emphasized that Taekwondo can help young children to have good mental health, and that it helps in instilling moral and ethical values in them.
Panelist Adrian Tranter, chairman of British Taekwondo, said that these effects of Taekwondo in moral education could be enhanced through marketing of real case studies of people who changed through Taekwondo.
Another panelist, Pimol Srivikorn, President of the Taekwondo Association of Thailand, presented real cases of young people who saw positive changes through Taekwondo training. Unstable children, who had, for example, family issues, were trained during 1 year. After the training period, their discipline, social skills and self-esteem had improved.
Kook-Hyun Jeong, from the Korea National Sports University, said that in Korea, the personality education is being more and more neglected in schools and within the family, whereas it was gaining importance in Taekwondo clubs, and pointed out the important role of Taekwondo leaders in personality formation, in sense of responsibility, and in moral values, etc. He also added that the ´commercialization´of Taekwondo clubs has to change.
In the last open discussion, there were a great number of questions. The importance of Taekwondo leaders was pointed out, in order to practice Olympic values through the education of Taekwondo.