Para Taekwondo History
Taekwondo was introduced as a full member of the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) in 2015. World Taekwondo (WT) began developing the kyorugi (sparring) discipline for para-athletes in 2005. Since 2013, Poomsae has been developed as a competition format for athletes with all forms of impairments.
At the Paralympics, athletes can only compete in kyorugi. This includes the K43 and K44 classes (eligible impairments include – upper limb impairments such as hemiplegia and impaired range of motion and athletes with an arm amputation/deficiency/dysmelia).
In 2009, the first WT Para-Taekwondo World Championships were held in Baku, Azerbaijan and have now become a permanent fixture of the WT Calendar. Australia has a great run of success at these championships producing multiple World Champions.
Australian Taekwondo has established a national Para-Taekwondo Committee to specifically cater for members with impairments, and we are also engaging with like-minded national sports organisations to be part of a national framework in support of athletes with an impairment and officials being included in our programs.
Para Taekwondo Kyorugi Competition
Para Taekwondo competitions are included in most Australian state competitions, at a national level in the Australian Open Championships and the National Championships. Regionally they are included in the Oceania Championships and internationally in the WTF's Para Taekwondo World Championships. 2020 will see the inaugural inclusion of Para-Taekwondo (K43 and K44 classes) in the Paralympics to be held in Tokyo, Japan.
Did You Know?
Janine Watson (QLD) was Australia’s first ever Paralympian for Taekwondo.