Before a person becomes a student of taekwondo, they must be willing to abide by the universal student creed. This is as follows: To have the intention to develop in a positive manner and avoid anything that harms physical health or reduces mental growth. To have the intention to develop self-discipline and in doing so to bring out the best in myself as well as others. To have the intention to use what is learnt in class constructively and for the purposes of defence. The intention is to help fellow humans, myself and never be offensive or abusive'

The Taekwondo Belts grading system is straight forward, as with each grade level / rank, there are certain requirements laid down which have to be met. Usually lower rank gradings (up to black tag) are carried out by your club instructor at your local club. For more advanced grades an independant instructor is required for the assessment. This can only be attempted if your instructor has recommended you for grading.

White belt (10th Kup)

The Five Tenets
Ye Ui Courtesy
Yom Chi Integrity
In Nae Perseverance
Guk Gi Self-Control
Baekjool Boolgool Indomitable Spirit
Commands Charyot Attention
Kyong Ye Bow
Junbi Ready
Sijak Start
Gomman Stop
Barrol Return to Ready
Tirro Torra About turn

Counting 1 to 20 Hana, Dool, Set, Net, Datsut, Yowsot, Ilgop, Yodul, Ahop, Yol, Yol Hana, Yol Dool, Yol Set, Yol Net, Yol Datsut, Yol Yowsot, Yol Ilgop, Yol Yodol, Yol Ahop, Samul

Charyot Sogi Attention stance
Narani Sogi Parallel stance
Annun Sogi Sitting stance
Gunnon Sogi Walking stance

Body Sections
Nopun Bubun High section
Kaun Bubun Middle section
Najun Bubun Low section

Body Parts
Ap Joomuk Forefist
Sonkal Knifehand
Bakat Palmok Outer forearm
An Palmok Inner forearm

Defensive Movements
An Palmok Makgi Inner forearm block
Bakat Palmok Makgi Outer forearm block
Sonkal Najunde Makgi
Knifehand low block

Attacking Movements
Bandae Jirugi Reverse punch
Barro Jirugi Obverse punch
Ap Cha Busigi Front snap kick
Ap Cha Olligi Front rising kick

General Terms
Tae Of the foot
Kwon Of the hand
Do Art, Method or Way
Jungshin Tenets
Dojang Training Hall
Dobok Practice suit

White, Yellow stripe (9th Kup)

Patterns: A pattern is a series of attacking and defensive movements designed to combat one or more imaginary opponents. Chon-Ji (19 movements): Means literally, "The heaven, the earth." It is in the Orient interpreted as the creation of the world or the beginning of human history, therefore it is the initial pattern performed by the beginner. The pattern consists of two similar parts—one to represent the heaven, the other, the earth.

Niunja Sogi L-stance

Body Parts:
Ap Kumchi Front sole
Balkal Footsword

Attacking movements:
Ap Cha Busigi Front snap kick
Doo Jirugi Double punch
Yop Cha Jirugi Side piercing kick

Defensive movements:
Chookyo Makgi Rising block
Bakat Palmok Najunde Makgi Outer forearm low block
An Palmok Kaunde Makgi Inner forearm middle block

Sambo Matsoki Three-step sparring
(Attacker in walking stance, defender in parallel stance)

General Terms: An Makgi Inside Block
Annuro Makgi Inward Block
Bakat Makgi Outside Block
Bakurro Makgi Outward Block

Tul Pattern
Wen Left
Orun Right
Nagagi Forward
Duruogi Backward

Yellow (8th Kup)

Dan-Gun (21 movements): Dan-Gun is named after the Holy Dan-Gun, the legendary founder of Korea in the year 2333 BC.

Body Parts:
Ap Kumchi Front sole - is used for front kick and turning kick.
Balkal Footsword - is used for side piecing kick and back piecing kick.
Dwit Chook Back heel - is used for reverse turning kick.
Sonkal Knifehand
Sonkal Dung Reverse knifehand

Attacking movements:
Bandae Dollyo Chagi Reverse turning kick
Dollyo Chagi Turning kick
Nopunde Ap Jirugi High front punch
Sonkal Yop Taerigi Knifehand side strike
Yop Cha Jirugi Side piecing kick

Defensive movements:
Chookyo Makgi Rising block - in walking stance.
Sang Palmok Makgi Twin forearm block - in L- stance.
Sonkal Daebi Makgi Knifehand gaurding block - in L - stance.

Ban Jayoo Matsoki Semi - free sparring - (Both attacker & defender start in L - stance)
Jayoo Matsoki Free sparring - (Both attacker & defender start in L - stance)
Sambo Matsoki Three - step sparring - ( Attacker in walking stance - defender in parallel stance)

Hechyo Break/Seperate
Gaesok Continue
Jeuii Warning
Kamjom Demerit/Minus point
Silkyok Disqualification

General Information:
Rising block is classified as a front block, so it must be performed full facing. Front block (Ap Makgi) is when the blocking tool finishes at the centre line & the body is full facing. When performing rising block, the fist must be over the opposite shoulder. Three-step sparring may be practised using the same three of ANY attack. Remember not to perform the high punch when returning to Chon-Ji. Side block is when the body is kept half-facing whilst blocking. Dan-Gun movements 13 & 14 are performed in continuous motion Yonsok Dong Jak The 4 defensive movements in pattern Dan-Gun are:
(1) Sonkal Daebi Kaunde Makgi in niunja sogi
(2) Sang Palmok Makgi in niunja sogi
(3) Bakat Palmok Najunde Makgi in gunnon sogi, and
(4) Chookyo Makgi in gunnon sogi.

Yellow, Green Stripe (7th Kup)

Do-San (24 movements): Do-San is the pseudonym of the patriot Ahn-Chang-Ho (1876-1938).
The 24 movements represent his entire life, which he dedicated to furthering the education of the Korean people and to its independence movement.

Body Parts:
Dung Joomuk Backfist
Sonkut Fingertips

Attacking movements:
Dung Joomuk Taerigi Backfist strike
Sun Sonkut Tulgi Straight fingertip thrust

Defensive movements:
Nopunde Hechyo Makgi High Wedging Block (Using bakat palmok)

General Terms: Chagi Kick, Euhke son Shoulder line, Gassum son Chest line, Japyosul Tae Release from grab, Makgi Block, Myong chi son Centre line (Solar plexus line), Sogi Stance, Taerigi Strike, Tulgi Thrust, Weeyok Power, Barun Dong Jak Fast Motion, Yonsok Dong Jak Continous Motion

General Information:
Green belt signifies the plants growth as the Taekwon-Do skills begin to develop. Fast Motion (Barun Dong Jak) is when two or more moves are performed with a shorter time frame between the moves, each using its own breath (As in front kick, obverse & reverse punch). Continuous movement (Yonsok Dong Jak) means performing two or more moves without stopping, with each move having its own breath as in Dan Gun moves 13 & 14.

Green (6th Kup)

Patterns: Won-Hyo (28 movements): Won-Hyo was the noted monk who introduced Buddhism to the Silla Dynasty in the year 686 ad.
Gojung Sogi Fixed stance
Goburyo Sogi 'A' Bending stance 'A'
Moa Sogi Close stance
Moa Junbi Sogi 'A' Close ready stance 'A' - Hands level with your philtrum

Body Parts:
Baldung Instep
Balkut Toes
Bokboo Abdomen
Chiboo Pubic region
Mori Head
Myong Chi Solar plexus

Attacking movements:
Dwit Cha Jirugi Back piercing kick
Sonkal Annuro Taerigi Knifehand inward strike
Yop Jirugi Side punch

Defensive movements:
Dollimyo Makgi Circular block
Palmok Daebi Makgi Forearm gaurding block

Ibo Matsoki Two-step sparring. A combination of any hand and any foot attack in either order; (Attacker in L-Stance, defender in parallel stance.
General Terms:
Gong gyuk gi Attack techniques
Bang eo gi Defence techniques
Ha bansin Foot parts
Sang bansin Hand parts

General Information: When using Gojung Sogi (fixed stance) the weight must be distributed 50/50, whilst keeping the feet in an L-shape stance. Mori (the head) should only be used in extreme circumstances. The starting position for pattern Won-Hyo is Moa Junbi Sogi ‘A’.

Green, Blue stripe (5th Kup)

Yul-gok (38 movements): Yul-gok is the pseudonym of a great philosopher and scholar Yi l (1536-1584), nicknamed "The Confuscious of Korea." The 38 movements of the pattern represent his birthplace in the 38º latitude and the diagram represents (+) "Scholar."

Guburyo Sogi 'B' Bending stance 'B' ( Looking toward the rear)
Kyocha Sogi X-stance

Body Parts:
Ap Palkup Front elbow
Son Badak Palm
Yop Bal Badak Side Sole (Used for stamping motion)

Attacking Movements:
Ap Palkup Taerigi Front elbow strike

Defensive Movements:
Doo Palmok Makgi Double forearm block
Golcho Makgi Hooking block
Sang Sonkal Makgi Twin knifehand block

Ilbo Matsoki One-step sparring (Attacker and defender start in parallel stance)

General Terms: Euijin Dong Jak Connection Motion, Phiagi Dodging, Mikulgi Sliding, Gwanja nori Temple, Yop tok Jaw, Twiggi Jumping

Body Postures:
Ap Mom Full Facing, Ban Mom Half Facing, Yop Mom Side Facing

General Information: Continuous movement (Yonsok Dong Jak) means performing two or more moves without stopping, with each move having it’s own breath as in Dan Gun moves 13 & 14. Connecting movement ( Euijin Dong Jak) means using one breathe for two movements, as in pattern Yul-Gok movement numbers 16 & 17, and 19 & 20. Blue belt signifies the heaven, toward which the plant develops into a towering tree as training in Taekwon-Do progressses.
Son badak (the palm) is used for Golcho Makgi (hooking block). When performing Sang sonkal Makgi, the knifehand rising block must be over the centre line. When in Kyocha Sogi (X-stance) both feet must point in the same direction.

Blue belt (4th Kup)

Joong Gun (32 movements): Joong Gun is named after the patriot Ahn Joong Gun, who assassinated Hiro-Bumi Ito, the first JAPANESE Governor General of Korea, known as the man who played the leading part in the Korea-Japan merger. There are 32 movements in this pattern to represent Mr. Ahn’s age when he was executed at Lui-Shung prison in 1910.

Dwitbal Sogi Rear foot stance
Moa Junbi Sogi 'B' Close ready stance 'B' (Level with your navel)
Nachau Sogi Low stance

Body Parts:
Ap Palkup Front elbow
Bandal Son Arc hand
Son Badak Palm
Sonkal Dung Reverse knifehand

Attacking Movements:
Giokja Jirugi Angle punch - (Fist finishes on the chest line)
Dollyo Jirugi Turning punch - (Fist finishes on the solar plexus line)
Sang Dwijibo Jirugi Twin upset punch - (Used on two opponents)
Sang Sewo Jirugi Twin vertical punch - (Used on a single opponent)
Wi Palkup Taerigi Upper elbow strike - (Performed reverse only)
Yobap Cha Busigi Side front snap kick)

Defensive Movements:
Degutcha Makgi U-shape block
Kyocha Joomuk Chookyo Makgi X-fist rising block
Son Badak Noolo Makgi Palm pressing block
Son Badak Ollyo Makgi Palm upwards block
Sonkal Dung Kaunde Makgi Reverse knifehand middle block

Sparring: Idil Matsoki Two versus one sparring

General Terms:
Neurin Dong Jak Slow Motion (Count to 4), Mikulgi Sliding, Twimyo Flying, Twiggi Jumping

General Information: When performing angle punch (Giokja Jirugi) the fist finishes on the chest line. Do not confuse with Turning Punch (Dollyo Jirugi) which finishes on the centre line. Arc hand (Bandal Son) is used for U-shape block.

Blue, Red Stripe (3rd Kup)

Toi Gye (37 movements): Toi Gye is the pen name of the noted scholar Yi Hwang (16th century), an authority on neo-Confuscianism. The 37 movements of the pattern represent his birthplace on the 37° latitude, and the diagram (+) represents "Scholar."

Attacking Movements:
Dwijibun Sonku Tulgi Upset fingertip thrust
Ollyo Chagi Upward kick (Using the knee)
Naeryo Chagi Downward kick
Opun Sonkut Tulgi Flat fingertip thrust
Homi Sonkut Tulgi Angle fingertip thrust

Defensive Movements:
Doo Palmok Miro Makgi Double forearm pushing block
Kyocha Joomuk Noolo Makgi X-fist pressing block
Najunde Sonkal Daebi Makgi Low knifehand gauding block
San Makgi W-shape block

General Information: Red belt signifies danger, cautioning the student to exercise control and warning the opponent to stay away. Saju Tulgi—Four-directional thrust. This is NOT a pattern, but this exercise was formerly practised by the 3rd kup holder and above. When performing San Makgi (W-shape block) you must look toward the direction you are travelling, e.g., when moving the left foot, look left. The student should by now have a wide-ranging knowledge of the vital spots and be able to name most in terminology. Chari Chari Dong Jak Consecutive Motion. This is when the same hand or foot is used to perform two or more techniques in different directions or with different attacking tools.

Red belt (2nd Kup)

Hwa-Rang (29 movements): Hwa-Rang is named after the Hwa-Rang youth group which originated in the Silla Dynasty in the early 7th century. The 29 movements refer to the 29th Infantry Division, where Taekwon-Do developed into maturity.

Moa Junbi Sogi 'C' Close ready stance C - Hands level with your pubic region
Soojik Sogi Vertical stance
Waebal Sogi One-legged stance (Not yet used in Tul)

Body Parts: Hori Waist
Pyun Joomuk Open fist
Yop Joomuk Side fist

Attacking Movements:
Bandae Dollyo Goro Chagi Reverse hooking kick
Bituro Chagi Twisting kick
Cha Bapgi Stamping kick
Niunja So Baro Jirugi L-stance obverse punch
Naeryo Chagi Downward kick
Ollyo Jirugi Upward punch
Sonkal Naeryo Taerigi Kifehand downward strike
Yop Palkup Tulgi Side elbow thrust

Defensive Movements:
Bandal Chagi Crescent kick
Cha Momchugi Checking kick
Kaunde Yobap Makgi Inner forearm side front middle block
Noolo Chagi Pressing kick
Son Badak Miro Makgi Palm pushing block

General Information: When performing Bandal Chagi (crescent kick), the leg must be kept bent. You need to be able to demonstrate all 13 stances so far learnt. You need to be able to demonstrate the many different uses of Ap Joomuk, i.e., as many types of punch as possible using only the fore fist. When performing Idil Matsoki (2 versus 1 sparring) an emphasis must be placed on safety. This will involve keeping both opponents in a straight line for as long as possible and not exposing yourself to danger. Try to defend by blocking one opponent into the path of the other.

Red, Black stripe (1st Kup)

Choong-Moo (30 movements): Was the name given to the great Admiral Yi-Soon-Sin of the Yi Dynasty. He was reputed to have invented the first armoured battleship (Kobukson) in 1592, which is said to be the precursor of the present day submarine. The reason why this pattern ends with a left hand attack is to symbolise his regrettable death, having no chance to show his unrestrained potentiality checked by the forced reservation of his loyalty to the king.

Attacking Movements:
Dwitcha Jirugi Back Piercing kick
Nopunde Sonkal Ap Taerigi High knifehand front strike
Twimyo Yopcha Jirugi Flying side piercing kick

Defensive Movements:
Doo Son Badak Ollyo Makgi Twin palm upward block
Kyocha Sonkal Momchau Makgi X-knifehand checking block

General Information: There are 24 patterns in Taekwon-Do. The reason for this is as follows: "Here I leave Taekwon-Do for mankind as a trace of man of the late 20th century. The 24 patterns represent 24 hours, one day, or all my life." - General Choi Hong Hi (IX)

Taekwondo Black belt (1st Dan)
White belt - Rrepresents the beginning for the student who has no previous knowledge and is therefore innocent towards taekwondo

Yellow belt - Signifies the foundation in the earth for which the roots are laid

Green belt - Resembles the growth of the plant as the student gains skills in this martial art

Blue belt - Represents the conversion from a plant into a towering tree aiming to reach the heavens

Red belt - Signifies danger. The student must be aware of the skills possessed and the need for self-control. It also warns the opponent to stay away

Black belt - Is a display of the student’s maturity and proficiency in this style. It also represents indifference to darkness and fear



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