Sport Tae Kwon Do has continued to increase in popularity since it first appeared as a demonstration sport in the 1988 Olympics. Recognizing the importance of healthy competition and the lessons learned from it, our school typically participates in two tournaments every year, one in spring and one in the fall. However, this is not the main focus of our training; I view tournament competition as a piece of the pie and not the whole pie.

It is important for us to recognize things for what they are. Olympic style Tae Kwon Do is a sport, whereas Tae Kwon Do is an art. The "Do" in Tae Kwon Do means "art" or "way." If we take all the traditional aspects of Tae Kwon Do away, all we're left with is a sport. I have been to some tournaments where it was obvious that some of the schools there were focused solely on the sport aspect. This is usually apparent during forms competition; these schools will typically be very competitive during sparring, but usually display very poor technique while doing their forms. Why? It's simple. Technique is simply not what they're focused on. Such schools typically don't emphasize proper technique, one step sparring, self defense techniques, etc. The main focus of their training is practicing how to score points and win trophies. We must also realize that since it is a sport, a Tae Kwon Do match does not closely resemble a real fight. Thus making it a pretty unrealistic self defense system. This is problematic for schools who say they teach martial arts, but really only teach sport. In other words a lot of "tournament champions" who are only trained in sport TKD, may not fare very well in a real self defense confrontation.

I am not anti-sport, our nation loves sports and they certainly have their place. However, we must realize that Tae Kwon Do is so much more than simply a sport. The development of TKD as a sport is very recent compared to its long history as a martial art.

Let us remember that it was some of the early masters of TKD, such as Grandmasters Un Yong Kim and Woon Kyu Uhm both former presidents of the Kukkiwon, who helped develop the rules, format, and style of modern day Tae Kwon Do competition.

It can be described like a tree. Traditional Tae Kwon Do is the trunk, and sport Tae Kwon Do is one of the branches. Without Traditional Tae Kwon Do and it's early masters being there first, sport TKD would have had no roots which to grow out of.

- Master Stephen

Harvest TKD Instructors

Harvest Tae Kwon Do is under the leadership of Master Stephen, an internationally certified fifth degree Black Belt. He has been a martial artist for over 25 years, and has over 15 years of teaching experience. Master Stephen founded Harvest Tae Kwon Do in Olathe in 2005. Master Stephen is a patient instructor who students look up to. He teaches class in a disciplined manner, while still allowing students to have fun. Since Master Stephen began his training as a child he understands the positive impact martial arts can have in children’s lives.

Master Stephen is aided in teaching by several Black Belts and senior students. Among those are:

Master Frank is an internationally certified fourth degree Black Belt with many years of teaching experience. He ran a Tae Kwon Do school in Texas for his instructor Grandmaster Hee Deok Park. Master Frank is an enthusiastic instructor who pushes students to do their best.

Master Jackson is an internationally certified fifth degree Black Belt. He owned and operated Miami County Tae Kwon Do for many years. Master Jackson, a former Sergeant with the Johnson County Sheriff's Department, has conducted many self defense seminars in conjunction with law enforcement agencies. Master Jackson serves as president of our testing committee.

Mr. Jacob is one of Master Stephen's senior students, he holds the rank of second degree Black Belt. He also studies various other styles of martial arts like Okinawan Kenpo and Judo.

Ms. Samantha
is one of Master Stephen's senior students, she holds the rank of second degree Black Belt. She also has interest in different styles of martial arts and is currently training in Judo.

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