Theory Of Power

Physical power combined with technique is the most important factor in TaeKwonDo, since without powerful techniques the student would not be able to overcome an assault. The development of physical power in TaeKwonDo is the result of the utilisation and co-ordination of reaction force, concentration, equilibrium, breath control and speed.

Reaction Force

Reaction Force has two elements. First, reaction force is generated by pulling the fist to the hip to increase the force of a punch to an opponent; this is often described as the piston action. Later in training the student will develop other methods of reaction force. The second is the effect of an opponent moving towards you and being struck by your attack. The total force is that of your own attack plus that of the opponent moving towards you.


Concentration is described as the ability to mobilise the correct muscles in order to optimise the attack and to focus the attack on the target area. By utilising the correct muscle groups maximum power can be achieved. The effectiveness will be determined by the concentration of the power to the smallest possible target area.


Equilibrium is classified into both dynamic and static balance. They are so closely interrelated that the maximum power can only be produced when the static stability is maintained through dynamic (mobile) stability. To maintain good equilibrium, the centre of gravity must fall on a straight line midway between both legs (assuming both feet remain on the floor).

Breath Control

Correctly controlled breathing can improve one’s stamina. It can also condition the body to receive a blow and increase the power of a blow directed toward an opponent. The student should never inhale while focusing a block or attack against an opponent otherwise the movement will be impeded and the effectiveness reduced.


Speed is an essential factor of force. Two formulae are used in the calculation of power. Force = Mass x Acceleration, which can be used to determine the power required to mobilise and indeed to demobilise a body. Secondly, Energy = ½ Mass x Velocity x Velocity, the amount of energy contained in an object travelling at speed. Both formula show that for a given mass both speed and acceleration are vital for the maximisation of power.

REMEMBER (C.R.E.M.B.S) Concentration; Reaction Force; Equilibrium [balance]; Mass; Breath Control; Speed [acceleration].