Taekwondo is famed for its employment of kicking techniques, which distinguishes it from martial arts such as karate or certain southern styles of kung fu. The rationale is that the leg is the longest and strongest weapon a martial artist has, and kicks thus have the greatest potential to strike without retaliation.
Taekwondo as a sport and exercise is popular with people of both sexes and of many ages. Physically, taekwondo develops strength, speed, balance, flexibility, and stamina. An example of the union of mental and physical discipline is the breaking of boards, which requires both physical mastery of the technique and the concentration to focus one's strength.
Stretching to increase flexibility is an important aspect of Taekwondo training.
Although each taekwondo club or school will be different, a taekwondo student can typically expect to take part in most or all of the following:
Some of the best-known taekwondo techniques include: