Present Day
Upon liberation of Korea from the Japanese colonial rule after World War II, the Korean people began recovering the thought of self-reliance and the traditional folkloric games resumed their popularity. Song Duk-Ki, afore-mentioned master of Taekkyon, presented a demonstration of the martial art before the first republic of Korea president Syngman Rhee on the occasion of his birthday, clearly distinguishing Taekwondo from the Japanese Karate which had been introduced by the Japanese rulers.
Martial art experts began opening Taekwondo gymnasiums all over the country and after the end of Korean War [1950-1953] Taekwondo was popularized among the dan-grade black-belters within the country, also dispatching about 2,000 Taekwondo masters to more than 100 countries.
After all, following the nomination of Taekwondo as a national martial art in 1971, the present Kukkiwon was founded in 1972 to be used as the headquarters as well as the site of various Taekwondo competitions. Then a year later, in 1973 the World Taekwondo Federation was established. In 1973, the biennial World Taekwondo Championships was organized.
In 1984, Taekwondo was admitted to the Asian games as an official event. In 1975, Taekwondo was accepted as an official sport by the U.S Amateur Athletic Union [AAU] and also admitted to the General Association of International Sports Federations [GAISF], followed by the adoption of official sports event by the International Council of Military Sports [CISM] in 1976. The WTF became an IOC-recognized sports federation in 1980, making Taekwondo an Olympic sport. Then the adoption of Taekwondo as an official event was followed by the world games in 1981, the pan-American games in 1986, and finally by the Sydney 2000 Olympics in 1994 and then Athens 2004 Olympic Games in 2000. On November 29, 2002, the 114th IOC Session also confirmed the inclusion of Taekwondo in the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games.