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Newsletter March 2020

Mar 7, 2020 | News

From the Office of the President – Covid-19 & Safety of ITF Family

It is very unfortunate that the World is facing a crisis that also affects our Taekwon-Do Family around the Globe. The covid-19 pandemic is spreading with different intensity in various regions like wildfire. Here in Korea we have been one of the first to face this challenge and now, although this challenge is not yet over, we feel more comfortable to see the number of infections decreasing.  I am proud that many Taekwon-Do instructors and students intelligently follow their regional rules to prevent the spread of the virus even if they have to close their schools. I am delighted to see so many ideas to continue the spread of Taekwon-Do in these difficult times despite the covid-19 challenge. Online pre-recorded activities, zoom interactive classes involving students and parents in their homes as well games and entertainment ideas that make me very proud of that we keep the indomitable spirit of Taekwon-Do soaring around the world.

Let’s all be one minded and overcome this crisis with the spirit of Taekwon-Do. A true leader who teaches Taekwon-Do should protect his students before himself, and his students who learn the Art should protect their teachers before themselves and become Taekwon-Do fighters for all of our community.

Let us all overcome the difficult situation with a heart of gratitude for everyone, not just yourselves.


Oh Chang Jin

ITFHQ President

MOU between ITF-HQ and ITF Americas

The breakdown of the International Taekwon-Do Federation into many small factions and organizations after the passing away of the Founder in 2002 has weakened the Art and in many cases downgraded the prestige and value of Taekwon-Do. There have been a lot of discussions about the importance of the Unification of the Art, however, no significant achievements have been made in this area so far.

ITF HQ’s motto “One spirit, One-force, One-ITF” has been a dominating force in the organization’s activities. Tul tour programs open to any organizations and branches of Taekwondo, open events organized with different Taekwondo groups, invitations and meetings in Korea with many leaders of Taekwondo visiting the ITF HQ Center of excellence and total openness for collaboration have been the main pragmatic approaches conducted by the ITF HQ. Therefore, it is with great pleasure that we announce that on the 22nd March 2020 a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed between the International Taekwon-Do Federation Headquarters (ITFHQ) and the International Taekwon-Do Federation of the Americas (ITF Americas) led by Grand Master Orlando Vega. The parties agree that the Unification of ITF is the main reason for this merger, according to the wish of General Choi Hong Hi to bring Taekwon-Do back to its homeland, South Korea. Therefore, ITF Americas will merge into ITFHQ and become fully incorporated into the ITFHQ Organization and will carry out the Taekwon-Do teachings as set in the Encyclopedia of Taekwon-Do, follow the rules of testing-criteria and the correct age and time between ranks as laid down in the Encyclopedia of Taekwon-Do, and provide service and high quality training for students, instructor and masters of the merged body.

Both parties are very proud of this agreement and are quite confident that more such unifying proceedings will follow very soon.

The MOU documents have been signed remotely by Master Oh Chang Jin in Korea and Grand Master Orlando Vega in the USA.

New Members of the Council of Masters (COM)

The tragic loss of G M Sutherland and recent resignations of Master Craig Stanley and Master Lee Jong Mok from the Council of Masters (COM) has meant we needed to fill a number of vacancies on our team. The COM would like to publicly acknowledge the great contribution of Masters’ Stanley and Lee during their tenure and know that they will continue to be a valued part of ITF HQ. Of course, the loss of G M Sutherland was felt by all of the COM and much of the membership who knew her or interacted with her. She nonetheless left the legacy of a terrific team who continue to assist in the development of ITF HQ in many ways.  We also wish to welcome to the COM Grand Masters Orlando Vega and Sergio Sciascia and know they will bring great energy and new ideas to ITF HQ.

New Umpire Rules Test

In order to allow the Umpire team to focus on the practical aspects of Umpiring in our face to face courses the committee has developed an online test of each component of the Rules of Competition for both World Championships and World Cup/Continental/National Championships. Aspiring Umpires must first complete the General Umpire Rules component and then may choose whichever discipline they wish to qualify in prior to participating in a practical Umpiring course.

The cost of each component is only US$5 (up to a maximum of US$30 for all disciplines) but participants need to achieve a 75% score to pass any of the elements to qualify. All successful candidates will receive a digital certificate of completion. The rules of competition are available on the ITF HQ web site at https://itfofficial.org/umpire-and-competition/

These rules should be studied thoroughly before attempting the online tests. Practical Umpiring courses can be organized through the Umpire Committee by contacting Master Steven Weston, Chair of the Umpire and Tournament committee. E-mail steve@southernitf.com

New ITF HQ Website Development

If you have logged onto our website at www.itfofficial.org recently you will have noticed how clean and dynamic our website now looks.

Mr Iain Stewart has done a terrific job in updating it and the back end systems to make it faster and cleaner and provide you with many more features. It will continue to be upgraded over the next few weeks to allow people to become ITF HQ members almost immediately and to access our online shop to purchase ITF HQ branded merchandise. It already includes our new competition rules tests as well as a registration and login area for website members to access special areas of the site.

We hope you like the new site and watch out for updates soon.

Recent High-Ranking Promotions

On 14 March 2020 the following personnel were promoted to the following ranks by Master Michael Munyon, ITF HQ North America Regional Director and Mr. Zac Taylor, ITF HQ-USA Ohio State Director and owner of Taylor Martial Arts Academy

Mr Paul Taylor VI

Ms. Misty Smith V

Mr. Jason Prettyman IV

List of ITF HQ Postponed Events

As you can imagine many of our planned events have had to be either postponed or cancelled due to the pandemic of Covid-19. Nonetheless, you can rest assured that we are doing everything possible to reschedule any event to a safer time, once the crisis that we face has passed.

Should any member or group wish to publicise their events or changes to dates etc. please feel free to send the information to ITFHQ Administration (korea@irfmail.org) or via our website and we will do our best to ensure everyone knows through our various social media networks.

The Newsletter Editorial Team

Master Steve Weston (7th Degree Master) is a member of the COM and Chair of the Umpire and Tournament committee. He has been involved with the production of Master Kang’s recently published  book “The Way to Learn Taekwon-Do” and has been involved in publishing many scientific journal articles in his role as the Laboratory Manager of the Respiratory Research Group at the University of Tasmania. He has also written numerous Taekwon-do related articles for the following magazines, Moosin online, Blitz         and Taekwon-Do Australia

Master Michael Munyon (7th Degree Master) is the ITF HQ North America Regional Director and has written articles for numerous magazines and newspapers.  You can see some of his writing in Totally Taekwon-Do magazine, USA DOJO and more.

Sabum Luke Danskin (4th Degree Sabom) is a member of the ITF marketing and promotions committee, and has written many online Taekwon-Do articles.  He also worked very closely with GM Sutherland with many of the documents required for ITFHQ Scotland

Master Zibby Kruk (PhD) author of over 80 research publication in the area of Genetics, Epigenetics, Meat and Animal Sciences. Referee to 4 international research journals. Also, author of articles about Taekwon-Do in various magazines, editor-in-chief of Moosin online magazine, editor of Master Kang’s recent book “The Way To Learn Taekwon-Do”