World Taekwondo rebrands to end WTF connection

The World Taekwondo Federation (WTF) has completed a rebrand to World Taekwondo as it seeks to modernise and shake off negative connotations connected to its previous acronym.

World Taekwondo’s rebranding plans have been in the works for over a year, but were confirmed ahead of the start of the World Championships in Muju, South Korea on Saturday. World Taekwondo replaces the World Taekwondo Federation as the name of the global federation, with the organisation stating that the change reflects its commitment to evolving and adapting to remain relevant with today’s modern audiences.

The new World Taekwondo logo retains the ‘kicking athlete’ design that was the ‘T’ in the WTF as a link to the federation’s heritage. The kicking athlete is coloured in the five colours of the Olympic rings against a white background to signify the federation’s position as the leader of Olympic taekwondo and to symbolise the globality of the sport.

In recent years, WTF has become a common acronym for a rude slang term, with which World Taekwondo has wanted to disassociate.

Chungwon Choue, who was re-elected as World Taekwondo president on Friday, said: “Since 1973, we have been known as the World Taekwondo Federation. Over the following 44 years we have grown taekwondo into the global sport it is today with 208 member national federations worldwide. We have led taekwondo to the Olympic Games and in 2020 will have the honour of seeing taekwondo at both the Olympic and Paralympic Games; and we have reinforced our federation’s position as a global leader in taking taekwondo beyond sport and into the field of humanitarianism.

“But we know that in such a competitive world, we must always evolve and adapt to stay relevant and appeal to young and modern audiences. In the digital age, the acronym of our federation has developed negative connotations unrelated to our organisation and so it was important that we rebranded to better engage with our fans. World Taekwondo is distinctive and simple to understand and reinforces the global nature of our sport. Our vision is taekwondo for all and as World Taekwondo we are confident we can build on our success to date and achieve that vision.”

After its official roll-out at the World Taekwondo Championships in Muju, the new brand will be incorporated in all official communications, marketing materials and branded merchandise.