By Tom Degun

Para-taekwondoSeptember 25 - World Taekwondo Federation (WTF) President Chungwon Choue has launched a campaign to get the sport included on the programme at the Paralympics in time for the Games in 2020.

It follows the success of taekwondo during the Olympics at London 2012 when the sport, which took place at ExCeL, proved to be one of the most popular. 

Taekwondo was voted onto the Olympic programme in 1994 and made its debut at Sydney in 2000. 

Choue and Jean-Marie Ayer, the secretary general of the WTF, both believe that the sport could have a positive impact on the Paralympics, which will be held in Istanbul, Madrid or Tokyo in 2020.

"Each year the number of our Para-athletes is increasing as the WTF continues to provide everyone with the greatest opportunity to participate in taekwondo, regardless of a disability," said Ayer.

Modified competition rules apply to Para-taekwondo, which features events for competitors with amputation with both limbs above elbows, amputation of one limb above the elbow, amputation of both limbs below the elbows, and amputation of one limb below the elbow.

Attacks to the head are prohibited and the duration of the contest is three rounds of one minute each with a one-minute break between rounds.

"The 2012 WTF World Para-Taekwondo Championships will take place in Aruba in November and we are expecting entries from Pan America, Europe, Africa and Asia," Ayer.

"London 2012 has been an inspirational experience and we want to continue to inspire all walks of life in the on-going pursuit and achievement of excellence."

Chungwon Choue_giving_speech_September_2012WTF President Chungwon Choue is leading the campaign to get taekwondo into the Paralympics for 2020

The success of London 2012 has boosted the sport's marketability, believes Choue.

"Taekwondo is the fastest growing martial art and one of the biggest booming sports around the world," he said.

"Young and old, male and female, people from all religions and cultures have taken up taekwondo.

"London 2012 was a resounding success, and the fairest and most dynamic event in our history."

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