World Tang Soo Do Assoc

We are proud members of the World Tang Soo Do Association which has over 150,000 members across the globe.

The association was founded in 1982 by Grandmaster J C Shin, 10th Dan, and is currently headed by Grandmaster W R Strong, 9th Dan.

Grandmaster J C Shin – Founder

The founder of the World Tang Soo Do Association was Grandmaster Jae Chul Shin who was one of the leading figures of the martial arts world in the 20th and 21st Century. He was born on 20th December, 1936 in Seoul, Korea. He began his long and distinguished career in martial arts in 1947, at the age of twelve after being initially inspired by an unknown monk in a desire to learn the martial arts. He joined the Seoul Moo Duk Kwan central gym and began serious study under Grandmaster Hwang Kee, founder of the Korean Moo Duk Kwan system. (There is a picture of Grandmaster Hwang Kee from when he visited St Ives on the St Ives Club page.)

By the time he was first Dan, he had started his teaching career as an assistant instructor at the central gym. After that he taught at Korea University where he was studying and where he would earn both his bachelors and master’s degrees in political science. While studying he also taught martial arts at the Seoul Central YMCA, various colleges, different police and military institutions. He was drafted into the South Korean Air Force to teach martial arts in 1958 and taught both American and Korean servicemen at Osan Air Force base where he was stationed. One of the American servicemen that Grandmaster taught was one of his most notable students; Carlos Ray Norris or better known as Chuck Norris  By the time he had completed his master’s degree in 1968, Grandmaster had been instructing students in martial arts and in particular Tang Soo Do for almost 20 years across South Korea. In that same year with the  sponsorship of Chuck Norris, Grandmaster moved to the United States to continue his graduate studies at Rutgers University and extended his instruction to foreign students as a representative for the Korean Soo Bahk Do Association. He also established the U.S. Tang Soo Do Federation at his first school in Burlington, New Jersey. In 1982, the World Tang Soo Do association was formed with Grandmaster at the helm. Today it is made up of over 150,000 members including 8000 black belts and 300 master instructors in 38 countries. His years of teaching experience and his extreme dedication have added to his scientific and unique methods of teaching Tang Soo Do. His fields of expertise include self-defence, forms, breaking, weapons, health care, ki gong and meditation.

He is also the author of several books on our martial art. In March 2010, the World Tang Soo Do Association’s board of directors approved Grandmasters promotion to 9th degree black belt. In July 2010, he was formally promoted to the rank at the association’s annual world championships, after 27 years as an 8th degree black belt. Sadly Grandmaster passed away on 9th July 2012. Grandmaster dedicated his life to developing one of the finest and most effective martial arts:


Grandmaster W R Strong

Grandmaster William R. Strong, Ku Dan, or 9th degree black belt, received his current rank of Kwan Chang Nim at the US National Championships in October 2021. He became Grandmaster of World Tang Soo Do following the sad passing of Grandmaster Beaudoin in 2020. Grandmaster Strong began training in 1964 in Austin, Texas at the Jhoon Rhee Institute of Tae Kwon Do. Grandmaster Jhoon Rhee was on the test panel for his first exams.

After moving to Alabama, he studied Tae Kwon Do for another ten years and achieved the Sam Dan rank. In the early 1980’s, he became a member of the US Tang Soo Do Association and eventually received his Sah Dan Masters rank. Around the mid-1980’s he joined the World Tang Soo Do Association and Tang Soo Do has been his core martial arts since that time but over the years he has also studied Hapkido, Aikijitsu, Aikido and Shotokan.

Grandmaster Strong now operates the North Alabama Tang Soo Do studio in Florence, Alabama. His family also train with his wife holding the rank of Cho Dan and daughter’s Rita having E Dan and Morgan having the rank of Sam Dan.

Grandmaster Strong has travelled to many WTSDA regions and taught at seminars, clinics and Black Belt camps. These have included regions in the United States as well as Europe, South Africa, Mozambique and Costa Rica.

Some quotes from Grandmaster Strong:

“If one trains long enough with the understanding that there is always more to learn, then the concept of “Do” or way of life becomes ingrained in daily thoughts and activities. It is the quest to learn more, to live a healthy life, and to be prepared for all of life’s situations that I continue to train.”

“Enjoy learning and take advantage of the knowledge and skills you can learn from your instructors and peers.”

Boo Kwan Chang Nim M Khan – Head of GB Tang Soo Do

Grandmaster Mujahid Khan is an 8th Dan Black Belt holder, and he has been practising martial arts for over 50 years. Master Khan was the first British black belt in Cambridgeshire which he achieved in April 1977. He has now qualified under the World Tang Soo Do Association instructors certification as Boo Kwan Chang Nim (8th Dan Assistant Grandmaster).

Master Khans instructor was Grandmaster J.C.Shin, 9th Dan, President and the Grandmaster of the World Tang Soo Do Association. Master Khan is the regional director for region #11 which encompasses Western Europe. He has fulfilled this duty for many years as well as nurturing a steady growth for the World Tang Soo Do Association in Great Britain as the Chief Instructor. Master Khan has trained many students that have become National, European and World Champions. He has also overseen the testing of over 800 black belts and over 20 masters.