Hapkido is a Korean martial art known to most people that are familiar with the martial arts. But many do not know its origin and more importantly, what makes it unique.
The famous martial arts fighter Sokaku Takeda popularized Hapkido in many areas of Japan during the periods of Meiji, Taisho, and Showa. Takeda was well known for his martial prowess and toughness of his character. He used his skills in battles of life and death more than once.
Hapkido aims to be a complete fighting style, and not a specialized art. Beyond this, it makes use of gentle techniques borrowed from aikido so to turn an opponent’s power against him with throws and joint locks, along with hard punching and kicking techniques borrowed from Tae Kwon Do and Tang Soo Do. It also emphasizes the use of weapons. One of the things that makes Hapkido unique is the use of circular movements. In essence it is a style of self defense and not sport.
The main objectives of Hapkido are associated with its attempts at self-defense. Thus, a practitioner’s aim is to neutralize the opponent.