Taekwondo Versus Karate at the IOC

Sensei Post in Competition, News

As reported today Taekwondo is fighting for its survival with the IOC (International Olympic Committee). Interestingly Taekwondo’s loss could be Karate’s gain! “The president of the World Taekwondo Federation said he has mounted a big international campaign to win supporters for the martial art, while reforming the sport to make its judging easier to understand and its action more viewer friendly.” There are several reasons that Taekwondo finds itself on the block. First is the lack of media attention it received in the 2004 Games in Athens and its low television ratings. One of the most damaging reasons is charges that the judges were not impartial. Nothing looks worse then biased judging at any competition. Giving wieght to the appearance of impropriety is the sports link to Kim Un-yong, a former top Taekwondo officials AND former IOC vice president who was recently sentenced to a two-year jail term and a fine of $760,800 after being found guilty of corruption. None of these facts bode well for Taekwondo’s continued support from the IOC. If Taekwondo doesn’t recieve at least 50 out of 115 votes they will be removed from the 2012 Olympic Games. Taekwondo is not alone in this threat of removal from the games it shares the stage with Baseball, Softball and Modern Pentathlon. If any or all of these sports are eliminated from the 2012 Olympic Games there are five sports on the official waiting list looking to take their place; golf, karate, roller sports, seven-a-side rugby and squash. One would hope if Taekwondo is removed that Karate would be added so the Martial Arts will still have representation at the Olympic Games.

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