View Full Version : what is the difference between karate and tai kwan do?
DS wants to take a martial arts class. There are places near me that offer both or one or the other. What the heck do I choose for him? He is 5.5 with SPD (his OT likes the idea of him taking this type of a class).
08-31-2010, 11:12 AM
Pretty sure there's a lot more leg/kicking actions with Tae Kwon Do vs. Karate.
I did Tae Kwon Do for a while back in the day and it was a helluva workout.
I think Karate is probably the better "self defense" option of the 2 but Tae Kwon Do is very pretty with all the patterns etc.
edit - here's a link: http://www.diffen.com/difference/Karate_vs_Taekwondo
08-31-2010, 11:20 AM
I'm not the best to describe the actual difference in the martial arts - some are more whole body vs kicks vs weapons (at higher levels).
I'd go visit a couple of places and just ask. The spirit of the facility will come through in a visit. We recently started our 6 YO in Taekwondo. DS and DH visited several different places in our area. DH was leaning towards Taekwondo versus other martial arts, but I honestly don't remember the reason, but we also liked the actual place because while it was "yes sir" and professional, it still acknowledged that the kids were kids. Most places will let you do at least one preview class and/or has a cheap intro rate for a few classes or month to trip it out.
08-31-2010, 11:58 AM
I'd tell you to go and check out the places. Every place has a different "philosophy" about what they teach and how they expect the kids to learn. I can only speak for karate (my son has been taking classes for 2+ years), but it is a defense style, it is NOT teaching them to go out and kick butt. Part of the kata that they learn states "I bear no weapons and I pray I never have to use them". My son's sensei believes in kids being kids, but he expects respect and that the kids learn what they need to know (so kids won't pass just because their parents pay the money). The thing I like most about the dojo is that they do not believe in giving younger children a false sense of security about their skills by having a 10 year old get a black belt (the highest level in karate). A black belt is about responsibility and maturity (both physical and mental) and is a very big deal, so no one can get it until they are at least 16 and after many years of instruction. I like that they take it seriously and treat the kids to do the same. Other dojos around me are proud of having the youngest black belt or the most. So, check them out, maybe even try a class.
08-31-2010, 12:36 PM
Yeah, I'd go and check them out.
Thinking from a kid's point of view, tae kwan do is a LOT more fun.
08-31-2010, 12:58 PM
I agree that you really need to see the school/style to decide what you'd like to try. I grew up in karate and it was great fun (Universal Kempo Karate). It was, however, considered "street fighting" and a lot of emphasis was placed on self-defense. We did perform katas, which was more showy, but also did the fun stuff like breaking boards and bricks and fighting in tournaments.
08-31-2010, 06:34 PM
All three of my DD's are 1st degree blackbelt's in taekwondo. They all took from ATA (American Taekwondo Association). Our school is an excellent one with outstanding instructors. Each month has a "theme." It's a different character trait, ie, goal setting, perseverance, integrity, etc. There is a form for each belt and they work and test as a class, but are passed individually. Ages 8 and under work through the "Tiny Tiger" program and they do their forms with the instructor when they test. Testing is usually every 8 weeks and they also can participate in tournaments. They begin sparring at camouflage belt, but it is no or very light contact. They are taught how to avoid fights, how to handle bullies, and how to defend themselves if necessary. We found it to be an excellent self-esteem builder for all our DD's.
08-31-2010, 07:49 PM
my DS and DH have been taking TKD for years. It all really depends on the program and the people teaching it. Our school is owned and run by a 9th degree Grand Master. He holds an 8th or 9th degree in MANY forms of Martial Arts. The head master and other instructors are also 4th or 5th degree from Korea. They know their stuff and they are also wonderful with the children. The school is like a 2nd family for us. Highly recommend Tae Kwon Do. I feel it's more full body... hand and foot work.
08-31-2010, 08:30 PM
If I recall correctly from my college years: Karate is rooted in Japan and is more about hands. Tai Kwan Do has more leg and foot work than karate, though the each have both. Tai Kwan Do originated in Korea.
The instructor matters. A lot. Do a few sample classes before signing up for the long haul. I did Tai Kwan Do for a couple of years in college and it was great but I am sure others have great experiences in all the various forms of martial arts.
08-31-2010, 10:20 PM
Dora is in TKD right now, and my impression is that it is primarily defensive, and more about discipline, self control, etc, although part of the higher levels involve sparring. All I know is that TKD is Korean in origin (right?). Although each school may differ, at Dora's school they teach kids to count 1-5 in Korean and use the number for labeling different forms/poses. They also greet and thank each other in Korean. So there is some passing on of culture in the process.
One of the things that surprised me is that they do board breaking from the beginning. Even the Tiger tots class. In fact, Dora's first class had board breaking. There she was breaking boards with her fist and foot, on her first day. We were told they do this to build confidence.
vBulletin® v3.8.4, Copyright ©2000-2013, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.