The World Taekwondo Federation are seeking to promote themselves at World Taekwondo rather than the WTF ©WTF

The World Taekwondo Federation (WTF) are planning to rebrand themselves as World Taekwondo for marketing purposes, partly in order to avoid use of the well-known acronym, WTF.

This comes as part of the world governing body's new five-point development roadmap, in which innovating taekwondo events and raising the profile and awareness of the sport is a major aim.

There are no plans to fully change the name of the organisation, WTF secretary general Hoss Rafaty told insidethegames, with the body to continue owning the rights to the WTF name.

World Taekwondo, however, will be used for all marketing and business purposes, something that has already begun in events such as the World Taekwondo Grand Prix and the World Taekwondo World Championships.

This is partly in order to develop a consistent and easily recognisable brand name, Rafaty added.

WTF branding was prominent around the mat at this month's World Taekwondo Grand Prix Finals in Mexico City ©WTF
WTF branding was prominent around the mat at this month's World Taekwondo Grand Prix Finals in Mexico City ©WTF

Avoiding confusion given the WTF acronym's association with the colloquial "What The F***" slang to express surprise or disgust is another reason for the change, insidethegames understands.

Various other sporting bodies have undergone name changes in a rebranding exercise in recent years, including the International Sailing Federation, which changed their name to World Sailing earlier this month.

Other bodies to have changed their name in the last two years include the International Rugby Board, which became World Rugby, and the International Federation of Associated Wrestling Styles, which became United World Wrestling.

It is not yet clear whether the WTF will ultimately go a step further and change their name completely, or eliminate all WTF branding from events.

The issue was discussed on a preliminary basis at the recent WTF Extraordinary Council meeting in Mexico City on December 7, and is expected to be deliberated further next year.