Tang Soo Do is a korean martial art whose roots go back 2000 years. Litteraly, "Tang" stands for the "T'ang"dynasty of China and is a reminder of the shared background of China and Korea (617-907 AD). "Soo" means "hand" but stands for "fist, strike", and "Do" is the path, the way. "Tang Soo Do" is therefore "the korean martial art inspired by the T'ang method of martial arts".
In the facts, Tang Soo Do is a striking art (with feet, hands, knees, elbows...). Many other aspects of martial arts are also used, such as throws, joint manipulation and locks, weapons (bo staff, dagger, sword, cane...). As in most other martial arts, particular attention is given to moving, to generating power efficiently, to using one's opponent's momentum against him...
Tang Soo Do is however not just a sport or self-defense techniques. It is also a harmonious training of body, mind and spirit, a way to reach a state of total mental tranquility. The ultimate goal of a Tang Soo Do practitioner is not only to be able to perform perfect techniques but also to develop and perfect one's character.
Tang Soo Do contains a wide range of traditionnal striking techniques such as can be found in many other martial arts : punches, kicks, jumping techniques... These techniques are practiced among other ways in line drills or striking foam targets held by a training partner.
They are also practiced in patterns of predetermined moves, called Hyung (korean equivalent to the japanese katas). Hyungs combine harmony anf technique to teach one's body to move efficiently.
Sets of predetermined techniques are also practiced in twos, where on training partner will attack the other in a speccific way, and the other will defend following one of the techniques taught. This works targeting, distance and timing on a "solid" opponent.
Sparring is also present (Ja Yu Dae Ryun, korean equivalent to the japanese randori), where one can practice one's techniques freely, as long as no real contact between partners happens.
Weapons are also included. Staff (bong in korean, bo in japanese) is introduced after a year or two training, then come dagger, sword and finally cane at high level.
Instructors at 2RTSD will sometimes step out of the traditional TGTSDA curriculum to teach things that interest them or that they believe as important. This includes in particular knife fighting, flexible weapons, and self-defense points less often talked about in martial arts, such as consequences of self-defense or ways to avoid self-defense situation entirely.