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    Taekwondo Classification

    Two athletes doing taekwondo Taekwondo will be included in the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Programme for the first time. © • World Taekwondo Federation

    This is a brief overview of the sport and is in no way legally binding. In all cases the sport specific classification rules will take precedence. Should this page be out of date please contact classification@paralympic.org.

    Eligible impairment types:

    Impaired muscle power

    Athetosis

    Hypertonia

    Limb deficiency

    Ataxia

    Sport Classes

    All athletes in Taekwondo compete standing with full use of their legs. Athletes have varying impairments in their arms ranging from the most impaired (K41) to the least impaired (K44). The same equipment is used in Paralympic and Olympic Taekwondo. The rules differ slightly as there are no head kicks in Paralympic Taekwondo and no points are awarded for punches.

    Sport Class Profiles (K40)

    K41

    Athletes competing in this sport class are unable to block their Hogu (trunk protector). K41 athletes have a loss of upper limbs resulting in decreased kicking power due to the impairment's impact on balance and torsion. As the athletes are not able to block, focus is put on foot work and avoidance strategies while trying to score points.

    K42

    Athletes competing in this sport class will be able to block one side of their Hogu (trunk protector). You will see these athletes with a shortening or loss of one arm above the elbow. Other athletes may be able to cover only the upper half of the Hogu on both sides due to two shortened arms. All K42 athletes may have a slight reduction in kicking power due to the impairment's impact on balance and torsion. Athletes in this sport class will tend to manoeuvre so that they lead with their unaffected side towards their opponent while trying to score.

    K43

    Athletes competing in this sport class will be able to block most of their Hogu (trunk protector), with limited blocking of the lower parts due to loss or shortening of both arms below the elbow. These athletes will move and kick similarly to Olympic Taekwondo athletes.

    K44

    Athletes competing in this sport class will be able to block their entire Hogu (trunk protector). The K44 athletes will have at minimum a loss of one hand through the wrist, or an equivalently shortened arm. This sport class also includes athlete with coordination impairments in one arm. The K44 athletes will move, kick and strategize similarly to Olympics Taekwondo athletes.

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