2017, Volume 13, Issue 1

Hapkido research trends: A review

John A Johnson1, Hyo Jung Kang2

1Humanitas College, Kyung Hee University, South Korea
2College of Physical Education, Kyung Hee University, South Korea

Author for correspondence: John A Johnson; Humanitas College, Kyung Hee University, South Korea; email: beowulf600[at]gmail.com


Background and Study Aim. The plethora of martial arts research allows for uncountable cross-disciplinary studies. One such martial art is hapkido, a Korean martial art that focuses on self-defense techniques. Few academic studies on hapkido have been conducted in English. This review provided the academic literature of hapkido to identify it current trends and provide suggestions for future research projects.

Materials and Methods. The keyword “hapkido” was entered in both English and Korean text into four online databases: the Korean Studies Information Service System (KISS), the Korea Education and Research Information Service (RISS), Google Scholar, and WorldCat. Only articles published in journals were used in this review. The articles were then divided into subdisciplines and research trends were identified. The most pertinent results of this study indicate that hapkido is just as broadly researched as other popular martial arts like taekwondo and judo.

Results. A total of 1,288 articles were found in the databases: KISS (n = 79), RISS (n = 157), Google Scholar (n = 933), and WorldCat (n = 119). The search found articles published in English, Korean, Spanish, and Portuguese. Hapkido humanities articles outnumber the natural sciences. The most common subdiscipline of hapkido research was biomechanics, where the majority of papers were comparative studies between hapkido and taekwondo.

Conclusions. The breadth of hapkido research rivals heavily researched-martial arts like taekwondo, but the depth of research on hapkido is low. Hapkido studies contain a wealth of information that could expand the general understanding of Korean martial arts.

Key words: wŏn (circle), dollyuchagi (turning kick), hypogastric breathing exercises, aikido, yu (water), hwa (harmony)

Cite this article as:


Johnson J, Kang H. Hapkido research trends: A review. SMAES. 2017;13


Johnson, J.A., & Kang, H.J. (2017). Hapkido research trends: A review. SMAES, 13


Johnson, John A, Kang Hyo Jung. 2017. "Hapkido research trends: A review". SMAES 13


Johnson, J.A., and Kang, H.J. (2017). Hapkido research trends: A review. SMAES, 13


Kang, Hyo Jung et al. "Hapkido research trends: A review." SMAES, vol. 13, 2017


Johnson JA, Kang HJ. Hapkido research trends: A review. SMAES 2017; 13