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Taekwondo Purists Say Olympics Hurting Martial Art

Taekwondo's governing body rewriting the rules for Olympic hopefuls

Thursday, Apr 12, 2012  |  Updated 10:07 AM PDT
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Taekwondo Purists Say Olympics Hurting Martial Art

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Olympic Taekwondo hopeful Aaron Cook of Great Britain poses for pictures to capture his martial arts journey to the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

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Since becoming an Olympic event, taekwondo has largely ditched its traditions, creating a split in the martial sport.

At last weekend's British Open, more than 400 top competitors took part in a key event leading to the 2012 London Olympics. Many of the medals went to Britain, France and Iran.

Taekwondo's governing body rewrote the rules last year to award fighters more points for head shots. since then, many of the best players now often throw fancy spinning and jumping kicks that were once seen only occasionally.

Some taekwondo purists say the changes have gone too far and argue the Olympic-style fighting bears no resemblance to the martial art's origins in Korea.
 

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