Hapkido Jin Jung Kwan France, demonstration by Master COUET Raphael head master for JJK France and French speaking country.
Hapkido history is the subject of some controversy.
Some sources say that the founder of Hapkido, Choi, Yong Sul was a houseboy/servant (some even say "the adopted son") of Japanese Daito Ryu Aikijujutsu GrandMaster Takeda, Sokaku. In Japan, Choi used the Japanese name Yoshida, Tatsujutsu since all immigrants to Japan took Japanese names at that time. Choi's Japanese name has also been given as Asao, Yoshida by some sources. According to this view, Choi studied under Takeda in Japan from 1913, when he was aged 9, until Takeda died in 1943. However, Daito Ryu records do not reflect this, so hard confirmation has not been available. Some claim that Choi's Daito Ryu training was limited to attending seminars.
Ueshiba, Morihei, the founder of Aikido, was also a student of Takeda (this is not disputed). Hapkido and Aikido both have significant similarities to Daito Ryu Aikijujutsu, so it would seem that Hapkido's link to it is real, regardless of how and where Choi was trained.
Choi returned to Korea after Takeda's death and began studying Korean arts and teaching Yu Sool or Yawara (other names for jujutsu), eventually calling his kwan ("school") the Hapki Kwan. Ji, Han Jae, began studying under Choi and eventually started his own school, where he taught what he called Hapkido, after the grandmaster's school. Along the way, Hapkido adopted various techniques from Tang Soo Do, Tae Kyon, and other Korean kwans (schools).
Korean sources may tend to emphasize the Korean arts lineage of Hapkido over the Aikijujutsu lineage, with some even omitting the Aikijujutsu connection. However, as noted above, the connection can be seen in the techniques.
Ji now calls his system Sin Moo Hapkido. He currently lives and teaches in California, as does another former Choi student, Myung, Kwang Sik, who is GrandMaster of the World Hapkido Federation.
Some other Choi Hapkido students are still living. Chang, Chun Il currently teaches in New York City, and Im, Hyon Soo lives and teaches in Korea. Both of these men were promoted to 9th dan by Choi. One of the first Hapkido masters to bring the art to the western culture was Han, Bong Soo.
In the 1970's and 80's Hapkido was taught as the style of choice to elite South Korean armed forces units.