(Vol. 8, SI) The Globalization of Taekwondo Analyzed from perspective of Invasion Biology


The Globalization of Taekwondo Analyzed fromperspective of Invasion Biology


Song, Hyeong-Seok (Keimyung University) 




Taekwondo is a martial art which has succeeded in globalization. A variety of researchers have long been interested in the reasons of Taekwondo’s global success. The efforts of instructors overseas, the role of taekwondo-related organizations, the support of the Korean government and the sports taekwondo have played a role in this success. These reasons are convincing but not enough as definite

explanations, since there is a lack of discussion about the characteristics of Taekwondo. This study focuses on identifying these characteristics. Invasion biology was chosen for the theoretical basis. Successful invasive organisms display two fundamental characteristics: absence of natural enemies and the possession of certain genetic factors. These biological traits can be interpreted as cultural features of uniqueness and a requisite diversity. Taekwondo is a unique cultural phenomenon with exceptionally dynamic skills and a rich cultural diversity that can cope flexibly with environmental changes. Taekwondo skills are fast and dynamic. The dynamics expressed in Taekwondo movements is promoted through various competition events, such as sparring and poomsae. In addition, Taekwondo displays the requisite diversity to meet demands for various environments. One of the main reasons why Taekwondo displays the requisite diversity is its weak tradition. A cultural phenomenon with strong traditions is closed to the general environment. Contrary to this, a cultural phenomenon which has weak traditions is open. The expression ‘open to the environment’ means to absorb the heterogeneous elements into itself. Through such an inclusive process, Taekwondo displays the requisite diversity. The uniqueness of skills and the requisite diversity are agents of Taekwondo's successful globalization.


Keywords: invasion biology, globalization, Taekwondo, uniqueness of skills, requisite diversity 


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