If you're thinking about practicing Kumdo, you'll need to acquire some basic equipment. Like most martial arts, it requires practitioners to wear and use certain items. And failure to acquire this equipment may prevent you from participating in Kumdo. So, what equipment do you need for Kumdo?
What Is Kumdo?
Before we reveal the equipment needed for Kumdo, let's first discuss this martial art. Basically, Kumdo is a modern martial art that originated on the Korean Peninsula in the late 1800s. It's modelled after Japanese Kendo, featuring a similar style in which practitioners spar with each other while wearing body armor.
Kumdo practitioners begin at the lowest level, the 10th geup. As they become more experienced and proficient in this modern martial art, however, they'll progress to higher ranks, with the 1st geup being the highest. There are different requirements for obtaining higher ranks, higher. Therefore, it's important for practitioners to check their organization's rules and regulations. Assuming you practice Kumdo with a reputable martial arts organization, it should provide you with clearly defined rules regarding how to increase your rank.
Kumdo Equipment Explained
You'll need several different pieces of equipment to practice Kumdo, one of which is a chest protector known as a kap. As show in the image above, the kap is essentially a chest plate made of fabric and composite materials. Its primary purpose is to protect practitioners' chest from injury.
A homyeoum is another essential piece of equipment needed to practice Kumdo. This is the mask -- similar to a fencing mask -- that features a wire or mesh grill in the front. The purpose of the homyeoum is to protect practitioners' face and head from injury.
There's also the kapsang, which is a fabric skirt worn around the waist. Some people assume that it's worn strictly for aesthetic purposes, but this isn't necessarily true. Kumdo practitioners wear the kapsang to protect their hip from injury.
There are a few other items you'll need to practice Kumdo, such as howan. Howan are mitts with cuffs at the end that protect practitioners' hands from injury. You may also be required to wear a special uniform, known as a Dobok, that's designed with a light blue color.
This is just a general list of the equipment needed for Kumdo. If you're thinking about practicing this modern Korean martial art, contact the different organizations in your area to see what exactly they require.