My personal ending comments regarding
Taekwondo in the 2012 Olympics
A very diverse group of winners
this year and a number of the traditional Taekwondo powerhouse countries
Spain did much better
than expected. Congrats!
The UK has a new
Taekwondo champion who should be a strong competitor in a number of
future Olympics - Jade "Headhunter" Jones! She
was only 19 at the 2012 London Olympics.
This was an extremely
poor Olympics for South Korean Taekwondo. I am sure
there will be tremendous soul searching in that country
because they did not dominate their national sport. Sort of like when the USA
lost in men's basketball during the 2004 Olympics.
Hopefully Korea will exam their mistakes and come back
stronger for the 2016 Olympics.
USA also did poorly in
Olympic Taekwondo. Unfortunately, the Lopez family
exited quickly and may be too old to help in 2016.
Luckily, bronze medalist Paige McPherson was only 21 at
the 2012 London Olympics. She should come back even
stronger for the 2016 Olympics.
Most Taekwondo analysts seem to be
pleased that the Taekwondo matches in the 2012 Olympics
were more exciting and less controversial. This
means that Taekwondo is more likely to be included in
future Olympics (as it was on the verge of being
eliminated after a number of controversies in the 2008
games). For more, please read this
Reuters article, Yahoo
Sports article or this
Dong-A article (a major S. Korean newspaper).
The Independent article (UK newspaper) thinks that
Taekwondo could be excluded from the 2020
Olympics. You should also read this
The Atlantic article that discusses potential
replacements... squash, speed climbing, roller derby,
etc. Then again the Olympics includes "real sports" such
as ribbon dancing (rhythmic gymnastics)! Come on IOC!!!
You need to include sports with huge worldwide appeal
(i.e. Taekwondo) versus unknown & unpopular niche
Olympics will be held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Taekwondo will participate in the 2016 Olympics.
are questions on whether Taekwondo will be
offered in the 2020 Olympics (and this issue
will be decided in 2013).
Olympics were held in London, England. This
event started on July 27 and ended on August 12,
Click here for the official 2012 Olympic
Here is the
schedule for the Taekwondo matches at the
2012 London Olympics. The Taekwondo matches ran from August 8 through
only one of two "traditional" martial arts participating in
the 2012 Olympics. The other is Judo.
Here are the
of the top Taekwondo Olympic athletes. See who is competing
from your country and who are the favorites in each Taekwondo
weight division. Many of these athletes (i.e. Steven Lopez of
the US and Cha Dong-Min of S. Korea) have won medals in past
There are four
weight classes. Men - under 58 kg, 58-68 kg,
68-80 kg and 80+ kg. Women - under 49 kg, 49-57
kg, 57-67 kg and 67+ kg.
However in the
2012 Olympics, a country may only compete in two
weight classes per gender. Thus a single country
could only win a maximum of 4 possible gold
medals in Taekwondo at the 2012 Olympics (2 for the men &
for the women).
consists of sparring for three rounds of two
minutes each. If the match has not been decided
after these three rounds, the match has a sudden
trying to make Olympic Taekwondo even more
exciting so they are awarding more points for
spectacular head kicks. According to
Wikipedia, "a kick or punch that makes
contact with the opponent's hogu (the body guard
that functions as a scoring target) scores one
point; if a kick to the hogu involved a
technique that includes fully turning the
attacking competitor's body, so that the back is
fully exposed to the targeted competitor during
execution of the technique, an additional point
is awarded; a kick to the head scores three
points; as of October 2010 an additional point
is awarded if a turning kick was used to execute
are full force; if one competitor is knocked out
by a legal attack, the attacking competitor is
declared the winner, since the WTF allows
knockouts in sparring competition."
The primary gold
medals winners in the 2008 Olympics were South
Korea - 4, Mexico - 2, China - 1 and Iran - 1. The US came in
second in the overall medal count with 1 silver
and 2 bronze medals. However, no gold medals.
South Korea has been the primary winner at
Olympic Taekwondo. However, other countries
(i.e. Iran, China and USA) are becoming more &
more competitive. Because Taekwondo originated
in Korea, there is tremendous pressure on the
Korean athletes to win Olympic gold. For more,
please read this
Reuters article entitled "Olympic-South
Koreans fear being branded Taekwondo traitors"
(if they lose).
The Lopez family
is America's best known Taekwondo Olympic participants.
Support the US
Taekwondo Olympic team and
to help America's Olympic efforts.
Videos of Olympic Taekwondo
Athletes from Various Countries
Cook - These Taekwondo videos focus on Aaron Cook who is an
Olympic contestant from the UK. He knocked out Steven Lopez (the
Olympic gold medalist) in 2009.
Dong-Min - These Taekwondo videos focus on Cha Dong-Min who
is an Olympic gold medalist from S. Korea.
Jones - These Taekwondo videos focus on Jade Jones who is a
young Olympic Taekwondo star from the UK.
Steven Lopez - These Taekwondo videos focus on Steven Lopez
who is an Olympic gold medalist from the USA. He will be
competing in the 2012 Olympics.
Diana Lopez - These Taekwondo videos focus on Diana Lopez
who has won a bronze medal at the Olympics. She is the sister
of Steven Lopez.
Saei - These Taekwondo videos focus on Hadi Saei who is an
Olympic gold medalist from Iran. He has won two gold medals at
the Olympics (in 2004 and 2008).
Sarah Stevenson - These Taekwondo videos focus on Sarah
Stevenson who is an Olympic Taekwondo star from the UK.
Articles about Taekwondo Olympic Athletes
(these articles open in a new window)
Taekwondo Favorites -
Olympic Taekwondo Preview - This article
looks at the Taekwondo athletes favored to win
at the 2012 London Olympics. It examines
athletes from the US, UK, Iran, China, S. Korea,
Greece, Spain and France.
Olympic Team -
Afghanistan Trailblazer - This article looks
at an Afghan Taekwondo star who won a bronze
medal in the 2008 Olympics and how he is
preparing for the 2012 games.
USA Olympic Team
Lopez Siblings Clinch Berths on US Team -
The Lopez family has been America's best
Taekwondo Olympians but they have had more
trouble qualifying this year. Is age creeping
up? Steven Lopez has won Taekwondo medals in the
past three Olympics. However, he will be 33 when he
competes in the 2012 Olympics.
USA Olympic Team
Lopez, Abdallah Advance - This article looks
at the some of people going to the US Olympic
Taekwondo trials in March 2012.