First it is important to understand that Soo Bahk Do is the Art and Moo Duk Kwan is the style. Soo Bahk Do is the technical side, and the Moo Duk Kwan is the philosophical side of “Soo Bahk Do Moo Duk Kwan.” The name “Bahk” originated in the age of Chun Chu (2700 years ago) according to the Moo Yei Dobo Tong Ji, which is one of the oldest records of Korea’s martial arts. Soo Bahk Do (combat with bare hands and feet) is the only Korean martial art handed down from the Ko Ku Ryo Dynasty, thereby making it the oldest Korean martial art (aprox. 2,000 years old)
Translated literally, Moo Duk Kwan means “Institute of Martial Virtue.” It is the scientific use of the body in methods of self defense, combined with a strict philosophy guiding the practitioner towards discovering their full potential. Soo Bahk Do, translated means “Hand Striking Way”, and is the means to forge a body towards gaining ultimate use of its faculties through intensive physical and mental training. It is an art of self defense and philosophy that’s secrets cannot be bought at any price other than serious and rigorous training. It is an art tempered on the lawns of Buddhist monasteries, against the steel of wandering bandits and on the fields of combat, its history is a long and honorable one.