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PASmith's picture
Korean equivalent of "Jissen"?

I'm wondering if anyone knows (or could work out) a korean/hangul translation of the japanese word "Jissen"? As Iain uses it it is used to mean "real combat". In other words Karate for real violence.

I don't speak korean myself but the nearest I could work out would be something like...

"Hyeonsil" = reality or "Jinsil" = truth

combined with something like...

"Jeontu" = battle, combat, fighting or "Ssaum" = fight, fighting, quarrel

Jinsil ssaum? Jinsil jeontu? Hyeonsil ssaum?

PASmith's picture

Or maybe even using "jinjeonghan" = genuine/authentic?

Iain Abernethy
Iain Abernethy's picture

I like to use the prefix “jissen” because it makes clear we are focusing on the actual application of karate. The kanji is 実戦 and together they translate as “actual combat”. Individually the characters translate as:

実 = “real, truthful”

戦 = “combat, war, battle”

With the help of Google translate I translated the Japanese into Korean; and then back into English to ensure the meaning had not changed.

実 = 실제 = Real = silje

戦 = 싸움 = fight = ssaum

실제 싸움 = silje ssaum = Jissen = real combat.

Always problematic when translations are done by machine, and very important to get an actual Korean speaker to double check, but maybe “Silje Ssaum Tang Soo Do” would be the Korean equivalent of “Jissen Karate-Do”?

All the best,


aardvark's picture

The Kanji (or in Korean Hanja) 実戦 are pronounced 실전 (Shiljeon) in Korean, and mean exactly the same: Real combat. We can use the term in the same way Iain does, but there is a catch:

The term 실전태권도 (Shiljeon Taekwondo) is used to describe a rather new trend in Taekwondo which tries to appeal to adults by showing "practical" applications and focuses on transfer of Taekwondo skills to other sparring rulesets (mainly Kickboxing). Even though there is a lot of good stuff going on and change happening which I wouldn't have expected before, it has also become kind of brand.

Especially Jeong In Cheol (https://www.masterjeongtaekwondo.com/) tries to market his version of this to an international audience, so when you use the term people might expect that you do his stuff. The second proponent many people know from his Youtube videos, and whom I consider to be the most interesting is Lee Dong Hee (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MzcA49igZ7A).

They both focus mostly on applying the techniques inside the punch/block paradigm, but from a guard in a boxing like stance (Mo Chuchumseogi). They mostly shorten the movements and get rid of the chamber and the pulling hand.

Both of them have written books about this, some of the ones where Jeong was involved are in english and sometimes available on ebay or via his website. They are not great, but the really remarkable thing about them is that they represent an official approval of this approach, as they were published (or at least endorsed) by the Korean Taekwondo Association.

All the best,


PASmith's picture

Many thanks for the answers good sirs.