Development in Europe

Donjunim Kim Sou Bong came to Ruhr area in Germany in 1964 together with a handfull of other men from Korea. Some of these men had learned martial arts like HapKiDo or Taekyon in Korea and they wanted to keep on practicing in Germany. First they held their private training in the cellars of their accommodation. German mineworkers, who were practicing Judo – the only common martial arts at this time - at the Oberadener sports club, heard about the private training of the Korean men.

These German sportsmen, amongst them Judo black belt Klaus Stöckner and Klaus Steubel as well as student Karl-Heinz Kickuth, started to learn from Dojunim Kim Sou Bong, first at their accommodation, then they had a special room, because the group grew steadily. Due to language problems and differences in mentality Kim went back to America after one year. He accepted an invitation of the “American Association of HapKiDo”. In 1966 he attended Chuck Norris’ event “Karate Black Belt Championship”, where he met a lot of worldwide well known martial arts masters like Bruce Lee. Half a year Kim used to practice and teach together with his friend Choi in Los Angeles. In 1968 Kim went back to Europe, first to France then to Germany.

Supported by Judo sportsmen, in particular Anton Greven and Klaus Stöckner, it was possible to offer HapKiDo trainings in several Judo clubs. In 1968 Klaus Stöckner was the first German, who passed the exam for first Dan degree under the supervision of Dojunim Kim Sou Bong.

Kim (5. Dan degree) used to teach in the sports centre “Nippon” together with Manfred Kraft in Mühlheim/Ruhr. In the same year Kim founded his first HapKiDo school. The first room in Heisenstraße 63 was about 25 m2. There Kim started his own career as HapKiDo grand master in Germany and Europe. In 1969 the “German HapKiDo Dan Association” was founded, Kim Sou Bong was the president, Sigmund Lindener was vice president. One year later another HapKiDo club was founded in Essen. There mainly policemen used the HapKiDo training. In cooperation with Wolfgang Kruse Kim was teaching near to practice martial arts at the police school in Duisburg.

In 1973 the German Judo union supported HapKiDo courses held by Kim Sou Bong at Judo schools all over Germany. A well known Judo pioneer, his name was Anton Greven and he also attended some courses held by Dojunim Kim Sou Bong - arranged the founding of a section HapKiDo within the Judo club in Nordrhein-Westfalen. Kim became a national instructor. Under this title he held a lot of courses and promoted HapKiDo particularly in Dortmund and Bochum and surrounding. The Judo club in Nordrhein-Westfalen was a club for amateurs and they had a problem with Kim being national instructor on the one hand and being owner of a school for commercial use. This was the reason for the separation in 1973.


Already in summer of 1972 a course of the JIU JITSU club took place in Austria. Participants were people of different kinds of martial arts. There Kim Sou Bong presented his HapKiDo. In the following several courses took place in Graz during the weekends. In December 1973 HapKiDo was officially introduced to the AiDoKan club. In 1974 the Korean Kim Syung Pyung came to Austria and assisted Dojunim Kim Sou Bong. He used to teach in Graz until 1984, before he moved to America. The “1. Austrian HapKiDo club Graz” was founded in September 1974.

The training took place in a cellar at the Kernstockgasse every day. Even during the weekends enthusiastic people attended the voluntary training. Already in May 1974 the first Kub degree exams took place. Gerhard Agrinz from Graz was the first Austrian person passing the exam for the first HapKiDo Dan degree in Düsseldorf.


During this year Dojunim Kim Sou Bong also held first HapKiDo courses in the Benelux countries to promote this martial arts. His main achievements for HapKiDo are a basic teaching system and a systematization of the numerous techniques. In 1976 he wrote the first HapKiDo book in German language (Kim Sou Bong: HapKiDo – basics and techniques of the Korean self defence, published by Falken. Completely reviewed reissue: HapKiDo – Korean self defence according to the teaching system of grand master, published by Falken, 1994).


In 1976 Dojunim Kim Sou Bong founded his sports school in Graf-Adolf-Straße 45.


In the 80’s Dojunim Kim Sou Bong concentrated himself on the further development of his system and evolved an improved teaching system on the basis of his experiences with his students. During this period every second year international festivals took place in Düsseldorf, where all students were invited.


At the beginning of the 90’s Dojunim Kim Sou Bong founded the “European HapKiDo Education Centre” at Hatzfeldstraße 16a, where he used to train his students according to his new developed TMR teaching system in particular. This new kind of teaching system is not based on the systematic structure of a technical sequence, but allows the student to develop his personality and to identify his strengths and weaknesses when performing TMR training elements independently.


Almost until his death (04.08.2011) Dojunim Kim Sou Bong was very successful with his education centre in Düsseldorf, Wetterstraße 6, where he mainly trained instructors and masters. He was founder of the “International HapKiDo Dan Association” and several HapKiDo clubs. His system of HapKiDo was the result of his diverse experiences, studies and adventures.  


Successor of Kim Sou Bong is Chong Kwan Jang Nim Gerhard Agrinz 9th Dan degree, who is now fully and solely responsible for the technical direction of “HapKiDo teaching system Kim Sou Bong” as well as the “TMR Instruction system”, which was also developed by Dojunim Kim Sou Bong.