Kuk Sool Won is a Korean Martial art and means “national martial art” when translated into English. As a long-established fighting system, Kuk Sool Won is deeply rooted in the earliest martial arts used thousands of years ago. The study of Kuk Sool Won now includes many modern techniques such as weapon improvisations and defense against guns.
This martial art utilizes many different styles but continues to maintain some unique distinctions that ultimately set it apart from other conventional martial arts. There are also different techniques used by practitioners of Kuk Sool Won compared to other styles. Most of the Kuk Sool Won styles and techniques rely on fluid motions, forceful strikes, joints likes, and making use of pressure points. Each practitioner must have the ability to perform in low stances. This martial art combines both hard and soft styles of martial arts.
You Won Hwa is a significant principle of Kuk Sool Won which literally translates to “Water Circle Harmony.” You symbolizes softness, adaptability, and power while won symbolizes a personal circle where you are always active. This circle is also associated with the circular movement inherent in this martial art. Hwa finally symbolizes harmony between the body and mind. These three aspects of this principle are to be utilized during practice.
Kuk Sool Won was banned in the early 1900’s by the Japanese while they occupied Korea. If any Koreans were caught practicing martial arts, they were severely punished by the Japanese government. This forced martial arts practitioners to go into hiding. One of these practitioners and Grandmaster was Hyuk Suh who later gave Kuk Sool Won its official name in 1961.
In the 1970’s, this martial art became well known to the public and began to expand globally. Ever since then, schools were created to instruct the martial art, international tournaments have been held, and the Kuk Sool community in Korea has established a martial arts exhibition. This martial art is now instructed as a method of self defense, healing, competition, conditioning as well as recreational pleasure.