Taekwondo at the London 2012 Olympics: Review

Servet Tazegul - Taekwondo London 2012 Podium

Four fantastic days! The taekwondo competition at the London 2012 Olympic Games kept its promise. Big surprises, breath-taking fights, a new scoring system favoring head shots; everything came together to provide a dazzling show. Here is our review.

Full medal count: Taekwondo at the London 2012 Olympic Games
Full medal count: Taekwondo at the London 2012 Olympic Games (credit: official london 2012 website)

If it’s not your first visit to KO Podium, you know that we are mostly fond of big trends and national team results rather than individual athlete performances (excellent reviews have already been done in regards to that).

This edition is marked by the fall of South Korea, who after winning fourmedals in 2008 – all four in gold! – returns to the fold with two awarded athletes, of whom only one is an Olympic champion. The nation stays on the podium, but stands for the first time on the lowest stair.

Spain leads the rankings this year, even though they had not won anything since a bronze medal in 2000. Quite an unpredictable result! Will they be able to perform this well again in the future? The poor results obtained in the junior category these past few years do not provide us with grounds for optimism.

Finally, the London 2012 Olympic Games have been very “fair” in the taekwondo competition with the absence of a dominant nation. For the first time ever, no national team won more than one gold medal or more than three medals in total. That’s one of the reasons why taekwondo has its place in the Olympics: it offers a good opportunity for small nations to shine.

Here are a few pictures of the athletes that thrilled us in this competition. We can’t wait for Rio 2016!

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