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Every student of Tae Kwon Do should own this book! ~ Stuart Anslow, editor of Totally Tae Kwon Do magazine

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Reviews for Taekwon-Do: Origins of the Art: Bok Man Kim's Historic Photospective (1955-2015)

Read Alain Burrese's review of Taekwon-Do: Origins of the Art: Bok Man Kim's Historic Photospective (1955-2015)Read Alain Burrese's review of Taekwon-Do: Origins of the Art: Bok Man Kim's Historic Photospective (1955-2015)Alain Burrese

"It was not only interesting, but also motivating, to see these photographs celebrating Bok Man Kim’s 74 year odyssey with the Korean martial arts. He has been given the title of Supreme Master Kim as well as Grandmaster Kim, and with the accomplishments recorded in this illustrated history, you can easily see why he earned such titles."

Read Alain Burrese's entire review >


Read Orjan Nilsen's review of Taekwon-Do: Origins of the Art: Bok Man Kim's Historic Photospective (1955-2015)Read Orjan Nilsen's review of Taekwon-Do: Origins of the Art: Bok Man Kim's Historic Photospective (1955-2015)Orjan Nilsen

"I have gone over the book several times now, and I must say it is quite good. Being the history buff that I am, I really enjoyed the whole book, but being a Kukki Taekwondo exponent (often wrongfully called WTF), my personal primary interest was in the early years of 1950s-1970s, before the Kukkiwon and the WTF were founded...Being a self-appointed "Taekwondo-nerd" and amateur historian of Taekwondo, I noticed that the name Kim Bok Man showed up frequently during my studies of Taekwondo history."

Read Orjan Nilsen's entire review >


Advance Praise for Taekwon-Do: Origins of the Art: Bok Man Kim's Historic Photospective (1955-2015)

As the saying goes, if a picture is worth a thousand words, then this book is worth so much more, truly priceless! It is a compilation of historic photographs and other digital images that correctly paint the true timeline of Taekwon-Do. No longer can people give any credence to the myth that Taekwondo is 2,000 years old. Here in the latest book by Grand Master Kim Bok-Man, a former Master-Sergeant in the Korean Army, one can see Taekwon-Do develop and expand outside of Korea from the very onset by the man largely responsible for the initial dissemination. This book also goes a long way in crediting the true original pioneers, who have been ignored for far too long by the political nonsense often offered as Tae Kwon Do history. I have been blessed to have spent so much time in Grandmaster Kim's company. Now all of the Tae Kwon Do world can invite him into their homes and dojangs for a visit with the pictorial history of our beloved Korean Martial Art of Self-Defense.

Dr. George Vitale, Ph.D., 8th Dan
Recipient of the Taekwondo Hall of Fame® Lifetime Achievement Award, 2009


Grand Master Kim Bok-Man is one of the most profound Taekwon-Do pioneers of our day. He is world renowned as a key technical advisor and was an instructor "par excellence" during the founding period of our beloved martial art. Tae Kwon-Do: Origins of the Art: Bok Man Kim's Historic Photospective is an important publication which highlights his lifetime commitment and contributions as one of the most active and influential persons to affect the development of Taekwon-Do, under the stewardship and in concert with the Father and Founder, General Choi Hong-Hi.

Michael Cormack, 4th Dan
Member of the 6th ITF Demonstration Team, Argentina, 1979
Member of the 7th ITF Demonstration Team, Sweden, Former USSR & DPR of Korea, 1980
2nd ITF World Champion, 1978
General Choi Hong-Hi 사위


Grandmaster Kim Bok Man was there before 'Tae Kwon Do' was born, before it was named, helping General Choi Hong Hi shape the very art we practice, before it was even called 'Tae Kwon Do', helping to design the actual techniques, helping put together the first English-language book about Tae Kwon Do and then helping to design a majority of its tuls, the tuls millions around the world practice to this very day. His illustrious history in Tae Kwon Do is not a 'mere' thing... it was a pivotal role that all of us should be grateful for, that all of us should be aware of, and now, thanks to this wonderful book, all of us can share in and see for ourselves. Take a trip through Grandmaster Kim's life in Tae Kwon Do and you take a trip through the history of Tae Kwon Do itself; they are one and the same! Every student of Tae Kwon Do should own this book!

Stuart Anslow, 5th Dan
Editor, Totally Tae Kwon Do Magazine
Author of From Creation to Unification: The Complete Histories Behind the Ch'ang Hon (ITF) Patterns, Ch'ang Hon Taekwondo Hae Sul: Real Applications to the ITF Patterns (2 Volumes), and The Encyclopedia of Taekwon-Do Patterns (3 Volumes)


As the traditional components of Taekwondo continue to be overshadowed by sport, living relics of the past become all the more important. Subsequently, any individual, document or practice that fortifies the discipline as the true self-defense system that it is holds great value to the martial arts community at large. Here is a pictorial chronology of a man who has, from the beginning, tirelessly dedicated his life to Taekwondo. It is a volume of historical importance that, hopefully, will inspire practitioners throughout the millennium. The Taoists say that if you wish to realize immortality, share your knowledge. If this is true, Kim Kwan Jang Nim will live on forever.

Master Doug Cook, 6th Dan
Senior Student of Grandmaster Richard Chun
Author of Taekwondo: A Path to Excellence; Taekwondo: Ancient Wisdom for the Modern Warrior; Traditional Taekwondo: Core Techniques, History & Philosophy; and Taekwondo Black Belt Poomsae: Original Koryo and Koryo


Millions of people around the world who have trained in Taekwondo owe Grand Master Bok Man Kim a huge debt of gratitude, though relatively few today know of him and his contributions to Taekwondo. Bok Man Kim's pictorial history documents his role and contributions from among the earliest of Taekwondo pioneers in the Korean Army when the art had not yet been named. The many historical photographs in Taekwon-Do: Origins of the Art -- organized chronologically and clearly captioned with who, what, when and where -- are a pleasure to see and read. Also present in the photos are other important pioneers and Grand Masters from Taekwondo's golden years, including General Choi Hong Hi, Nam Tae Hi, Han Cha Kyo, and others. The only book of its kind about Taekwondo, perhaps any martial art, Bok Man Kim's Taekwon-Do: Origins of the Art is an important resource for anyone with even a passing interest in its history and heritage.

Grandmaster Bobby Kim, Film Star
Star of Seventeen Films, including Manchurian Avenger, Kill the NinjaKill LineBlack Belt Angels and other films


This beautifully presented book provides a photographic history of Tae Kwon Do from the personal collection of one of its most influential figures. The astounding quantity of photographic material makes it both a unique historical resource and a fascinating depiction of the lifetime martial arts journey of the man who helped shape the art in its formative years and continues to evolve and innovate today. This is an unprecedented opportunity for all practitioners, regardless of affiliation and style, to glimpse where Tae Kwon Do comes from, the path it has walked and how it may continue to grow and develop.

Simon O’Neill, 4th Dan
Author of The Taegeuk Cipher book and video series


Grandmaster Kim Bok Man has created a photographic record that has no peer. This book is a clear history of who was present - when and where - throughout the history of Taekwondo, allowing serious scholars of the art to easily reference and verify, as much as Grandmaster Kim's record allows, any claim made concerning the events documented within these pages.

Matthew Sylvester, 3rd Dan
Author of Practical Taekwondo: Back to the Roots
Former Features Editor, Technical Consultant and Columnist for Fighters, Combat, Tae Kwon Do & Korean Martial Arts, and Traditional Karate magazines


The photos contained in Taekwon-do: Origins of the Art document not only the remarkable journey of the legendary Kim Bok Man but also the art of Taekwon-do itself. Containing a wide array of photographs that span six decades, this book is beautifully designed and well organized in chronological order. Each photo is accompanied by a detailed caption that not only includes the names of the featured individuals, but also the date, place, and nature of the scene in the photograph. This book is like a time machine, allowing us to go back and see the origins of Taekwon-do through the eyes of one of its earliest pioneers. Anyone interested in the history of Taekwon-do should definitely have a copy of this book.

Jeff W. Rosser
Author of Combative Elbow Strikes: A Guide to Strikes, Blocks, Locks, and Take Downs
Columnist for Taekwondo Times and monthly writer for Totally Taekwondo Magazine


Grandmaster Kim Bok Man's photospective is Taekwondo out to prove itself. If ever you wanted to see the most audacious bare-knuckled, no-holds-barred practitioners taking on all challengers, Grandmaster Kim and members of that first historic ITF Demo Team have an incredible story to tell. But this isn't a dusty story of ancient history, it is a page-by-page prelude to what every current day practitioner should know of their art. What a fantastic resource to have in your collection.

Colin Wee, 6th Dan
Chief Instructor, Joong Do Kwan Tae Kwon Do
Coordinator, International Alliance of Martial Arts Schools


The history of Taekwon-Do is one of many perspectives. Unfortunately, the fact that Grand Master Bok Man Kim played a large role developing the technical foundation of Taekwon-Do is not well known. With this book I am convinced that the history will be preserved in an orderly manner and Grand Master Bok Man Kim's role will be remembered. My compliments to Grand Master Bok Man Kim for publishing this important piece of history.

Harry van Schaik, 6th Dan
Chairman, Dutch National Martial Arts Academy
Representative, ITF HQ Korea – Netherlands


One of the earliest pioneers of Taekwon-Do, Grand Master Kim Bok Man is one of the most well-versed persons of our art form. As a close friend and follower of the Founder of Taekwon-Do, the late Grand Master General Choi Hong Hi, Grand Master Kim has helped guide the evolution of Taekwon-Do since its birth. This book is a well-compiled and detailed chronological pictorial of Grand Master Kim's pivotal role in the flourishing of our martial art. It also shows how far Taekwon-Do has come since its humble beginnings. I am grateful to Grand Master Kim for sharing this important part of history with us and urge all fellow practitioners to expand their knowledge on the history of Taekwon-Do through Grand Master Kim's eyes in this historic photospective.

Master Tan Kian Chew, 8th Dan
International Taekwon-Do Federation – Singapore
Founder, Singapore Taekwon-Do Institute


Taekwon-Do has come a long way to be what it is today. Many have dedicated their lives to promote it. One of these great men is Supreme Grand Master Bok Man Kim, a living legend who has dedicated more than 60 years of his life to developing, teaching and promoting Taekwon-Do. Supreme Master Kim's amazing photospective is about this long proud history. Taekwon-Do: Origins of the Art: Bok Man Kim's Historic Photospective should be read by any Taekwon-Doist to know how and by whom Taekwon-Do has spread throughout the world.

Master Hossein Farid Sabbagh, 7th Dan
Chairman of Publishing & Information Committee of Asian Taekwon-Do Federation
Vice President & Secretary General of Iran ITF Association


Supreme Master Kim Bok Man's photospective is perfect proof of not only his lifetime commitment to the martial arts but also important historic events during the formative years of Taekwon-Do as he worked alongside General Choi Hong Hi, Nam Tae Hi and others in the Korean military to develop the art and promote it internationally. The contributions and influence of Supreme Master Kim and others is only recently being recognized and affirmed as details of its history comes to light. My sincerest thanks to Supreme Master Kim for sharing these photographs and his life's work with the world.

Grandmaster Stanley Carl Swope, 8th Dan
Vice President of the World Chun Kuhn Taekwondo Federation
Former World Record Holder


As the saying goes, 'A picture speaks a thousand words,' this book illustrates the life, experience, teaching, status and more of a great, humble man in the world of martial arts who dedicated his life to Taekwondo development, instruction and training.

Grandmaster Simon Lee, President, & Grandmaster Dr William Choo, General Secretary
Singapore Chun Kuhn Taekwondo Federation


It has been my pleasure to see and read the photographic historical account of Grandmaster Kim Bok Man's continued life's work. The history here compiled ensures that every practitioner and instructor alike can read about the history of Taekwondo firsthand from Grandmaster Bok Man Kim's perspective. This photospective also shows how important it is to keep account of one's own history, by way of photos and videos, so the path is kept clear for others to follow and, ultimately, lay their own. Every student and instructor should give himself or herself the pleasure of owning this book. Thank you, Grandmaster Kim, for sharing the history of you and your part in Taekwondo.

John McNally, 5th Dan
Founder, Absolute Tae Kwon Do Association
1st Founder, International Tae Kwon Do Council
Director, GTFI England


Grandmaster Kim Bok Man, the 'Technical Father of Taekwondo,' is truly a Grandmaster among grandmasters. With this book, he tells readers the grand story of his life in Taekwondo, lived to its fullest measure. Taekwon-Do: Origins of the Art: Bok Man Kim's Historic Photospective is the manifestation of a great man's straight-talk, wisdom and knowledge in the world of martial arts.

Grandmaster Dr. Sam Looi, President, & Sr. Master Gary Tong, Secretary General
Malaysia Chun Kuhn Taekwon-Do Federation


So far I am amazed by the beauty of the book. From the cover to the first chapter of pictures, this book is quite impressive and has exceeded my expectations.

Jeff Rosser, author of Combative Elbow Strikes: A Guide to Strikes, Blocks, Locks, and Take Downs


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