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ITF HQ Newsletter #04 – April 2022

May 15, 2022 | News, newsletter

Dear Taekwon-Do Practitioners and Friends,  

April has been a very eventful month, both in a positive and a poignant way.  We celebrated the 67th anniversary of Taekwon-Do on April the 11th.  It has been 67 years since the name Taekwon-Do was introduced and the art started spreading worldwide. Grand Master Peter Sanders, vice president of ITF HQ visited Korea and we, together with Secretary General Mast. Zibby Kruk, used this occasion to reflect on the past and talk about the present. The future looks bright for ITF-HQ Korea. We are proud of what we have achieved upto now, in bringing back ITF Taekwon-Do to South Korea, and fulfilling the Founder’s dream.

However, April was also brought sad moments as we bid farewell to Grand Master Charles Sereff, the Founder of USTF and also the first in USA to be ever promoted 9th Dan by the Founder General Choi Hong Hi. We also lost Grand Master Pablo Trajtenberg from Argentina, former president and a Taekwon-Do leader who devoted his life to promote the art of General Choi. Their contribution to Taekwon-Do will never be forgotten. R.I.P. in the eternal heavenly dojang.

Stay safe, healthy everyone, and take care of Taekwon-Do.


 Oh Chang Jin – ITF HQ President



ITF has taken some hard hits lately. We have lost Pioneers and Icons of Taekwon-Do.  After GM Sutherland, GM Bok Man Kim, GM Park Jung Soo, now both GM Pablo Trajtenberg and GM Charles Sereff have left this earth to shine on elsewhere.

GM Trajtenberg was the pioneer of Argentinian Taekwon-Do. He was known around the world as a great leader who contributed significantly in spreading Taekwon-Do to all corners of the world. He was the man behind such programs as the ITF Kids program and the ITF Harmony Program for training older adults. GM Trajtenberg placed a focus on helping to professionalism the teaching of ITF Taekwon-Do and was passionate about enabling instructors to earn a livelihood from teaching the Art.

GM Sereff was the first non-Asian to be promoted to 9th degree by the Founder himself, and the second to obtain this rank in ITF. His passing is a great loss to the USTF, his family and friends and the Taekwon-Do community as a whole. He was a man of the people, accessible to all regardless of rank and was known for his tremendous knowledge as well as the “instructor of instructors”.

Grand Master Sereff always emphasized that teaching and being around young people, in mind and body, helped him to stay forever young.

Grand Master Sereff
1933 – 2022

Grand Master Trajtenberg
1950 – 2022


Grand Master Peter Sanders visits Korea

(from the desk of Zibby Kruk)

After two years of struggling with the pandemic, restrictions are finally easing. This made it possible for GM Sanders to visit Korea this month. He got off his long flight and got involved in various activities related to ITF HQ right away.

The purpose of his visit was to prepare for the post COVID operation of the Federation, to review policies, plan events, and discuss short- and long-term goals. The days were intensive and involved daily meetings with the president and secretary general. The result of these meetings will be a better and more efficient management of the federation that will benefit our members.

Of course, GM Sander’s visit has some fun events as well, such as travel to an island and training on the secluded beach, horse riding, attending a Fashion show, mingling with the models, meeting of other business partners and martial art representatives, being a victim of a Taxi crash (no injuries luckily!) and participating in a discussion group meeting where he was interviewed.

It was great to host GM sanders in Korea and we have accomplished really great work.  We are looking forward to welcoming him again in the later part of this year.


First ITF HQ dojang Now in South Auatralia

Port Pirie Full Impact ITF Taekwon-Do is affiliated with the International Taekwon-Do Federation, Headquarters Korea, and are now an officially registered Dojang of ITF HQ. This affiliation with ITF HQ will offer our students greater opportunities in the art of Taekwon-Do than we ever imagined, including being able to participate in competition sparring, patterns, board breaking, special techniques and even umpiring at competitions.  Students will also be able to access more learning materials, support and mentorship.

Port Pirie Full Impact ITF Taekwon-Do’s Chief Instructor has proudly been involved in Taekwon-Do for nearly 40 years, and together with Port Pirie Full Impact ITF Taekwon-Do look forward returning to a more traditional aspect and reuniting with the founder’s style and vision under the ITF HQ banner. This journey came about after connecting with Master Steve Weston (VIIIth Dan) of Southern ITF Taekwon-Do (based in Tasmania).  Master Weston also hosted Chief Instructor Louie Dimou for an intense five days of training in ITF technique, and since his return he has been passing on to students his new knowledge.

Photos included are Chief Instructor Louie Dimou and Black Belt George Kouimtzis, surrounded by some the Port Pirie Full Impact ITF Taekwon-Do Students, Chief Instructor Louie Dimou receiving instruction from Master Steve Weston.

GrandMaster Vasilis seminar (Bonn)

(from the desk of Dana Stokhoff and Pascal Raeijmaekers)

On Sunday, 27th of March, we got in our car at 7am for a little drive to Bonn from Belgium. The change to summertime was the night before so it felt even earlier. But to see GrandMaster Vasilis Alexandris again, it was all worth it. After COVID restrictions, online classes and lockdowns, this was the second time that we could follow a live seminar with GM Vasilis, and it was an opportunity not to be missed.

The seminar was a small, by-invitation-only event. Master Thomas Weiss (Taekwon-Do Center Sammler and Weiss, Bonn) is a life-time follower of GM, and hosts this seminar every year, inviting around 15 black belts and instructors in his very beautiful dojang. This year there were students from other traditional TKD clubs, HQ Germany, as well as his own dojang. We were privileged to also be invited.

GM was accompanied by Master Natasa Manavaki, and together we covered 2×2 hours of exercises based on self-defense, with and without partner. We worked hard with a lot of sweat and gained instruction as well as tips to be better instructors ourselves. Afterwards we were sore for three days! But that is what we like the most about these kinds of seminars.

A dinner of pizza and pasta with everyone was the perfect end to the day. No words are needed to express how amazing it was again!

In November 2021 in Amsterdam, we covered fundamentals, in Bonn we focused on self-defence. In Belgium on the 21st of May, GM will cover sparring related. So bring your gloves, and be prepared to work hard. There will be 3 sessions in total, 2 from green belt and up, and 1 for black belts only. Register now at hwarang_itf@hotmail.be !

Korea The Homeland of Taekwon-Do

University World Cup (BUTL)

(From the desk of GM Henrik Kaerdrup)

The University World Cup was held in Manchester on 26th and 27th of March 2022. After several attempts since April 2020, after several Covid19 shutdowns, we finally succeeded in holding this fantastic event.

The people around BUTL, led by Sabum Ross Sharman, had managed to gather practitioners and representatives from a total of 47 different countries. The event was well attended throughout the weekend, despite the nice weather that Manchester offered, around 22/23 degrees. Various ITF organizations and federations, including WT Taekwon-do, were present, and it was nice to see everyone coming together with the same purpose. It was great to revisit old friends, meet Facebook friends and make a lot of new acquaintances. It was great to see people smiling without a face mask and everyone having a good time. It was obvious that everyone has missed coming together for tournaments like this for the 2 years of worldwide pandemic.

The whole weekend ended on Sunday evening with a fantastic after party, where we all gathered at a local disco bar in inner Manchester with karaoke, music, dance and exchanging friendships across organizations and countries.

All in all, it was a fantastic event which will be repeated in 2024.

Tul Tour 2022

We have organized a Tul tour (August 28th until September 4th), led by our Technical Director Grandmaster Vasilis Alexandris (Greece).  This tour provides its participants with technical instruction and theoretical lectures on patterns, and gives the opportunity to practice those patterns in the locations around South Korea that are associated with Taekwon-Do TUL history. The programs are epic tours across Korea taking its participants to the historic places that inspired general Choi to create the TUL.

The “TUL TOUR programs®” have also been structured as a blend of practical training and cultural experience, that allows its participants to develop a better understanding of Korean history, cuisine, tradition and therefore, about Taekwon-Do.

When you are interested in joining the Tultour in August, you can send an email to korea@itfmail.org. Also check out our website (WWW.TULTOUR.ORG).


Hopefully we will see you in August!

Korea The Homeland of Taekwon-Do

Job Opportunity in Korea after COVID-19       Recovery – Expression of Interest.

Teaching Taekwon-Do in English in South Korea.

The International Taekwon-Do Federation Headquarters in Korea is looking for young, energetic and experienced Taekwon-Do instructors (males or females), who are native English speakers, and would like to come to Korea and test their teaching skills utilizing a Taekwon-Do curriculum and a specially designed English language program. The essential criteria are:

1: Being a native English speaker

2: A minimum 1 Dan in Taekwon-Do ITF

3: Experience in conducting classes for children and teenagers.

For more information, please contact via email: korea@itfmail.org. The position(s) will be available as soon as the government regulation allows group activities to be conducted and COVID-19 restrictions eased.

ITF Rings

Rings have been used throughout history and seem to be a universally understood and exclusive symbol that carries respect, and high esteem, whether wealth or power. In some cultures, rings are the symbol of belonging to a group or fraternity. To honour the founder of Taekwon-Do, General Choi Hong Hi, ITF HQ Korea has introduced rings analogous to the one worn by the founder as an optional part of the ITF Dan certification system.

Four individually designed ring types will be available for ITF practitioners, Instructors, Masters and Grandmasters (I – IX Dan) who are ITF HQ Korea members or mentors. Rings are also available for non-ITF HQ members. The recent “Ring” promotion has resulted in a flurry of applications, and since the rings are hand made by a small merchant, the waiting time may be up to a month. Therefore, we ask for your patience, and we will update every single applicant with a time frame for production and delivery.  For those who would like to order an ITF HQ ring, please do it online following the link: https://www.itfofficial.org/ring-form/. The price is $250 USD for ITF HQ members + postage and $350 USD + postage for non-members.

ITF HQ Newsletter editorial team

Zibby Kruk (PhD, 8th Degree, Korea) – Editor-in-chief

Sheba Agarwal (PhD, 1st Degree, The Netherlands) – Editor

Luke Danskin (4th Degree, Scotland) – Editor

Michael Munyon (7th Degree, USA) – Editor

Johny Del la Rosa (7th Degree, Mexico) – Editor-Spanish

Muhammad Zaidi Surati (6th Degree, Malaysia) – editor-designer

Get Yourself in Print

If you’re an ITF HQ member and have news, updates or events you would like to have published in our newsletter; please send us a brief (1-2 paragraph) submission with photos to korea@itfmail.org.  Please note that your club news should stay within your club, but we would love to share it with the Taekwon-Do community for anything else.  You have worked hard to build your club and your students.  Let ITF HQ help recognize your outstanding accomplishments along with your members.