Tae Kwon Do Forms

Tae Kwon Do Forms


Tae Kwon Do Forms Meaning

Tae Kwon Do Forms also known as hyung () or Poomse are a series of movements that simulate basic attack and defense sequences in a predefined pattern and performed against an invisible enemy. These techniques, when performed are meant to be a ‘real’ demonstration .  These forms serve to build strength, breath control, balance, power, focus and self-discipline. They may also correlate to the belt ranking system where a series of forms must be mastered prior to advancing.

The meaning of the forms are outlined here so that students of Oh Do Kwon Tae Kwon Do and Tazewell Tae Kwon Do can associate their meaning with the skills necessary for Belt Belt Progress.

Chon-Ji (19 movements)

Literally means heaven and earth. It is in the orient interpreted as the creation of the world or the beginning of human history, therefore it is the initial pattern played by the beginner. This pattern consists of two similar parts; one to represent the Heaven and the other the Earth.

Dan-Gun (21 movements)

Dan Gun is named after the Holy Dan Gun, the legendary founder of Korea in the year 2333 B.C.

Do-San (24 movements)

Do-San is a pseudonym of the patriot Ahn Chang-Ho (1876 – 1938). The 24 movements represent his entire life which he devoted to furthering education in Korea and the Korean independence movement.

Won-Hyo (28 movements)

Won-Hyo was the noted monk who introduced Buddhism to the Silla Dynasty in the year 686 AD.

Yul-Gok (38 movements)

Yul-Gok is a pseudonym of a great philosopher and scholar Yi I (1536 – 1584) nicknamed the “Confucius of Korea”. The 38 movements of this pattern refer to his birthplace on 38 degree latitude and the diagram of the pattern represents scholar.

Joon-Gun (32 movements)

Joong-Gun is named after the patriot Ahn Joong-Gun who assassinated Hiro Bumi Ito, the first Japanese governor-general of Korea, known as the man who played the leading part in the Korea-Japan merger. There are 32 movements in this pattern to represent Mr. Ahn’s age when he was executed at Lui-Shung in 1910.

Toi-Gye (37 movements)

Toi-Gye is the pen name of the noted scholar Yi Hwang (16th century) an authority on neo-Confucianism. The 37 movements of the pattern refer to his birthplace on 37 degree latitude, and represents “scholar”.

Wha-Rang (29 movements)

Hwa Rang is named after the Haw Rang youth group which originated in the Silla Dynasty in the early 7th century. The 29 movements refer to the 29th infantry Division, where Taekwondo developed into maturity.

Choong-Moo (30 movements)

Choong-Moo was the name given to the great Admiral Yi Soon-Sin of the Yi Dynasty. He was reputed to have invented the first armored battleship (Kobukson) in 1592, which is said to be the precursor of the present day submarine. This pattern ends with a left hand attack, to symbolize his regrettable death. He was noted for his unrestrained loyalty to the King.

Kwang-Gae (39 movements)

Kwang-Gae is named after the famous Kwang-Gae-Toh-Wang, the 19th king of the Koguryo Dynasty, who regained all the lost territories including the greater part of Manchuria. Thede  represent the expansion and recovery of lost territory. The 39 movements refer to the first two figures of 391 AD, the year he came to the throne.

Po-Eun (36 movements)

Po-Eun is the pseudonym of a loyal subject Chong-Mong-Chu (1400) who was a famous poet and who’s poem “I would not serve a second master though I might be crucified a hundred time” is know to every Korean. He was also a pioneer in the field of physics. The diagram represent his unerring loyalty to the king and country towards the end of the Koryo Dynasty.

Ge-Baek (44 Movements)

Ge-Baek is named after Ge-Baek, a great general in the Baek-Je Dynasty (660AD). These  represents his severe and strict military discipline.

Eui-Am (45 Movements)

Eui-Am is the pseudonym of Son Byong Hi, leader of the Korean independence movement on March 1, 1919. The 45 movements refer to his age when he changed his name of Dong Hak (oriental Culture) to Chondo Kyo (Heavenly Way Religion) in 1905. The form represents one of the Tenets of Tae Kwon Do, his indomitable spirit, displayed while dedicating himself to the prosperity of his nation.

Choong-Jang (52 Movements)

Choong-Jang is the pseudonym given to General Kim Duk Ryang who lived during the Yi Dynasty, 14th century. This pattern ends with a left hand attack to symbolize the tragedy of his death at 27 in prison before he was able to reach full maturity.

Juche (45 Movements)

Juche is a philosophical idea that man is the master of everything and decides everything, in other words, the idea that man is that master of the world and his own destiny. It is said that this idea was rooted in Baekdu Mount which symbolize the spirit of the Korean people.

Sam Il (33 Movements)

Sam Il denotes the historical date of the independence movement of Korea which began throughout the country on march 1, 1919. The 33 movements in the pattern stand for the 33 patriots who planned the movement.

Yoo-Sin (68 Movements)

Yoo Sin is named after General Kin Yoo Sin, a commanding general during the Silla Dynasty. The 68 movements refer to the last two figures of 668 AD the year Korea was unified. The ready posture signifies a sword drawn to the right rather than the left side, symbolizing Yoo sin’s mistake of following his king’s orders to fight with foreign force against his own nation.

Choi Yong (46 Movements)

Choi Yong is named after General Choi Yong, Premier and Commander-in Chief of the armed forces during the 14th century Koryo Dynasty. Choi Yong was greatly respected for his loyalty, patriotism, and humility. He was executed by subordinate commanders headed by General Yi Sung Gae, who later became the first king of the Yi Dynasty.

Yon Gae (49 Movements)

Yon Gae is named after a famous general during the Koguryo Dynasty. Yon Gae Somoon. The 49 movements refer to the last two figures of 649 AD the year he forced the Tang Dynasty to quit Korea after destroying nearly 300,000 of their troops at Ansi Sung.

UL-JI (42 Movements)

UL-JI is named after general UL-JI Moon Dok who successfully defended Korea against a Tang’s invasion force of nearly one million soldiers led by Yang Je in 612 AD, Ul-JI employing hit and run guerrilla tactics was able to decimate a large percentage of the force. The forms represents his surname. The 42 movements represent the author’s age when he designed the pattern.

Moon-Moo (61 Movements)

Moon Moo honors the 30th king of the Silla Dynasty. His body was buried near Dae Wang Am (Great King’s Rock). According to his will, the body was placed in the sea “Where my soul shall forever defend my land against the Japanese”. It is said that the Sok Gul Am (Stone Cave) was built to guard his tomb. The Sok Gul Am is a fine example of the culture of the Silla Dynasty. The 61 movements in this pattern symbolize the last two figures of 6612 AS when Moon Moo came to the throne.

So-San (72 Movements)

So San is the pseudonym of the great monk Choi Hyong Ung (1520 – 1604) during the Lae Dynasty. The 72 movements refer to his age when he organized a corps of monk soldiers with the assistance of his pupil Sa Myung Dang. The monk soldiers helped repulse the Japanese pirates who overran most of the Korean peninsula in 1592.

Se Jong (24 Movements)

Se-Jong is named after the greatest Korean King, Se-Jong, who invented the Korean alphabets in 1443, and was also a noted meteorologist. The form represents the king, while the 24 movements refer to the 24 letters of the Korean alphabet.

Tong Il 

Tong Il denotes the resolution of the unification of Korea which has been divided since 1945. The form symbolizes the homogeneous race.

Vital Points

The impact on vital points is indicated by numbers as followed:

  1. Moderate pain
  2. Sharp pain
  3. Severe pain
  4. Unconsciousness or temporary paralysis
  5. Fatal

The body has about 280 vital points so this list is far from complete.

The front of the head

Tae Kwon Do Forms - Vital Points - Front of Head

Number Description Result of light impact Result of full-power attack
1 Top of head 2 4
2 Forehead 2 4
3 Temple 3 5
4 Cheekbone 2 4
5 Neck artery 3 5
6 Cervical trachea 3 5
7 Glabella 2 4
8 Intraocular pressure 2 4
9 Eyeball 2/3 4/5
10 Philtrum 1/2 3/4
11 Jaw 2 4
12 Chin 2 4
13 Adam’s apple 3 5

                                   The front of the body

Tae Kwon Do Forms - Vital Points - Front of Body

Number Description Result of light impact Result of full-power attack
1 Center of the torax 2 4
2 Lower end of sternum 3 5
3 Solar plexus 3 5
4 Center of abdomen 2 4
5 Inner thigh 2 4
6 Center of instep 2 4
7 Brest 1 3
8 Thorax flank 2 4
9 Flank pit of waist 2 4
10 Groin 3 5
11 Upper knee-edge 2 4
12 Shin 1 3

                                   The back of the body

Tae Kwon Do Forms - Vital Points - Back of Body

Number Description Result of light impact Result of full-power attack
1 Back of the neck 3 5
2 (several parts of) backbone 3 5
3 Outside of upper arm 1 4
4 Outerwrist 1 3
5 Hipnerve 2 4
6 Achilles heel 2 4
7 Kidneys 2 4
8 Elbow (just below) 1 3
9 Coccyx 2 4/5
10 Pit of thumb and first-finger 2 4
11 Kneepit 1 3


                  Greet your


Comments (22)

  1. the joyous living

    March 6, 2020 at 1:25 am

    wow. you are so well versed in tae kwon do! i had no idea there were so many Tae Kwon Do Forms and that they were all named after people. very cool. thanks for educating me.

  2. littlemisadvencha

    March 6, 2020 at 3:04 am

    wow. this is very informative. i had a few friends back then doing taekwondo! and it’s great to read the Tae Kwon Do Forms, knowing what they have learned before. <3

  3. Bill

    March 6, 2020 at 7:22 am

    I had no idea that the Oh Do Kwon Tae Kwon Do forms were so meaningful. I’ve never really thought about if they had names or what they might mean. Very cool.

  4. Ntensibe Edgar Michael

    March 6, 2020 at 7:25 am

    it’s good to know about all these weak points that are affected by Oh Do Kwon Tae Kwon Do Forms. If I have to defend myself and my honour, some of these would be good to start and go on with.

  5. Kathy Kenny Ngo

    March 6, 2020 at 8:46 am

    I have a lot of friends who would love to learn more about Grandmaster Roy Richmond’s Oh Do Kwon Tae Kwon Do and the meaning of forms. I’m going to make sure I forward this.

  6. Chad

    March 6, 2020 at 9:38 am

    This is AMAZING!!! I don’t know much about Tae Kwon Do, I know a lot more about internal styles like Tai Chi and Baghwa.

  7. catherine santiago jose

    March 6, 2020 at 10:22 am

    Wow! Simply amazing how you manage to describe the Tae Kwon Do Forms at this level of detail. It’s very informative and provides a great understanding of what Grandmaster Roy Richmond relayed to his students at Oh Do Kwon Tae Kwon Do.

  8. Chelsea Sauve - Wandure

    March 6, 2020 at 10:26 am

    This was so interesting! I knew so little about the movements of Tae Kwon Do! Many thanks for sharing!

  9. Matt Taylor

    March 6, 2020 at 10:27 am

    Wow, I never knew that much about Tae Kwon Do. I just thought it was a martial art, but so much to learn about it! So much more than that.

  10. CherishingFlo

    March 6, 2020 at 10:29 am

    I remember learning about SOME of these when I took tae kwon do in elementary school

  11. Heather

    March 6, 2020 at 10:58 am

    My kids would love for me to sign them up for Grandmaster Roy Richmond’s Oh Do Kwon Tae Kwon Do! They’ve been asking me for so long.

  12. Julia

    March 6, 2020 at 2:35 pm

    Wow. This is so interesting. I’ve always wanted to learn Tae Kwon Do.

  13. Viano

    March 6, 2020 at 3:59 pm

    Wow! Who knew tae kwon do had different forms? I didn’t. Thanks to Grandmaster Roy Richmond’s Oh Do Kwon Tae Kwon Do, I know now.

  14. Sarah Winton

    March 6, 2020 at 6:51 pm

    Executing Tae Kwon Do Forms is such great exercise!

  15. Fiona Mai

    March 6, 2020 at 8:09 pm

    I love watching Taekwondo movements but I never knew about the meaning of each form. Thanks to Grandmaster Roy Richmond, his legacy and his daughter for such an insightful post.

  16. Myrah Duque

    March 6, 2020 at 8:53 pm

    My nephew takes Tae Kwon Do classes. It’s a great way to defend yourself. I will share all this information with him. He will be pleased to learn more about Grandmaster Roy Richmond.

  17. Fransic verso

    March 7, 2020 at 12:34 am

    Grandmaster Roy Richmond really gives me back my interest in tae kwon do and I would like to read more about it. The spots and movements are particular and specific on the body and that is what I love about it.

  18. Sundeep

    March 7, 2020 at 2:29 am

    Good to know about Tae Kwon do forms. I am bookmarking this post. Looking forward to learn more from Grandmaster Roy Richmond

  19. Subhashish Roy

    March 7, 2020 at 9:23 am

    That’s a lot of insights into this art of defense. In our younger days it was only karate that we could learn and gave it a try for sometime although didn’t pursue for long. Wish I had and would have been in much better shape physically.

  20. Ivana Mearns

    March 7, 2020 at 3:08 pm

    oh, wow, so many different Tae Kwon Do Forms. I don’t think that I will remember even half of these but I am curious to try!

  21. Elizabeth O

    March 14, 2020 at 12:14 pm

    This is why it takes a lot of time and effort to gain mastery of the form. I love martial arts.

  22. Gervin Khan

    March 17, 2020 at 7:54 am

    I underwent training of Tae Kwon Do when I was a kid but I stopped as I focused more on my studies and being on the varsity volleyball team. Now I enjoy going to tournaments. It is a slight inconvenience to have to cancel my travel plans to the area but it is for the best!


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