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Hwa Rang Do

During Korea’s Three Kingdoms period, the Chinese Tang dynasty-backed Silla kingdom defeated the Japanese-backed Paechta kingdom. After the Silla defeated the Paechta, they honored the Tang emperor by creating tangsu martial arts. Tangsu was taught to an elite vanguard of aristocratic child soldiers who were educated in art, academia and martial arts. They became known as the Hwarang (Flowering Knights). The Hwarang became obsolete during Korea’s Yi period.

In 1942, Korean brothers Joo Bang Lee and Joo Sang Lee learned a variety of martial arts from a monk named Suahm Dosa. After their time with Suahm Dosa, the two brothers learned kung fu, karate and jujutsu. After piecing all the martial arts together and purporting that many of the movements were similar to the Hwarang warriors’ techniques, Joo Bang Lee named the art hwa rang do (way of the flowering knights) in honor of the Hwarang.

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  1. Korean Martial Arts Video: Behind the Scenes of Hwa Rang Do Grandmaster Taejoon Lee’s Cover Shoot for Black Belt Magazine

    Korean Martial Arts Video: Behind the Scenes of Hwa Rang Do Grandmaster Taejoon Lee’s Cover Shoot for Black Belt Magazine