Taekwondo a Path to Excellence by Doug Cook
“Taekwondo A Path to Excellence” by Doug Cook is an exceptional book for martial artists, not just those who practice taekwondo. The subtitle of this book is “Achieving Physical and Spiritual Enrichment Through Disciplined Practice”, and although Cook’s specific practice is the art of Korean taekwondo, I believe that much of what he writes is applicable to any martial art, regardless of style or country of origin. origin. It is not a technical book, but rather a text that shares the author’s journey and how taekwondo has had a positive impact on his life.
Through Cook’s journey, this book explores taekwondo and can inspire others to explore their own martial art path. Yes, I believe those who practice Korean arts will enjoy this book the most. Personally, I don’t do taekwondo, but my experiences with my chosen art, hapkido, are similar, and when Cook wrote about his travels in Korea, it reminded me of my time in the land of the morning. calme. (Not to mention it made me a little homesick to come back)
The book is divided into seven parts. The first part focuses on what taekwondo is. The author explains it as more than just hitting and kicking, and I found myself agreeing with many, especially the importance of “Doing”. The second part explains a bit of the history of taekwondo, including a bit of Korean history. The third part deals with becoming an unwavering practitioner of the art. I really liked this part and think most practitioners can relate the author’s message to their own practice, whatever the art. The fourth section of the book contains very good advice for beginners. Since we are all beginners in some part of our art, this chapter is good for everyone, but especially for those just starting their journey. The fifth part is more personal for the author concerning his students, his colleagues and his experiences. I found it an inspiring chapter. Part Six is quite short, but provides some wisdom regarding the economics of martial arts, something that anyone who wants to make a living teaching has to deal with. Finally, the seventh part recounts some of the experiences of the author during his training trips to Korea. Those who practice Korean arts and have not yet traveled to Korea may be inspired by this chapter to travel to the country of origin of their art themselves. As I mentioned, it got me thinking about my time there and made me yearn for my next visit.
It was an enjoyable, well-written book that got me thinking about my own martial arts journey. I think it’s a valuable book for martial artists, especially those who practice taekwondo or other Korean arts. Definitely recommended reading for all taekwondo stylists.