Beaumont Taekwondo Centre

Belts and Grading

Belts There are six belt colours and tags (used in between full colour belts). The different colours signify the progression of students:

  1. White - signifies innocence, as that of the beginner student who has no previous knowledge of Taekwondo.
  2. Yellow – represents earth, from which a plant sprouts and takes root as the Taekwondo foundation is being laid.
  3. Green – indicates the plant’s growth as the Taekwondo skill begins to develop.
  4. Blue – signifies the heaven, towards which the plant matures into a towering tree as training in Taekwondo progresses.
  5. Red – means danger, cautioning the student to exercise control and warning the opponent to stay away.
  6. Black – which is the opposite of white, illustrates the maturity and proficiency in Taekwondo. It also indicates the wearer’s imperviousness to darkness and fear.

For junior members their first step between white and yellow is done in 3 stages so as to gently introduce them into the grading process and all that involves. Juniors on this stepping stage approach break their first grading into 3 stages – a green tag grading followed by a blue tag and then onto Yellow tag. All the elements of the traditional first grading remain the same, but are just broken down into 3 stages. Once yellow tag is achieved, the normal grading process is followed.

Grading process
A grading is an examination where students are asked to perform kicking and punching routines, patterns, sparring and breaks, as well as answering theory questions. Each student is taken through the grading syllabus in advance and readiness to grade is based on attendance, focus and the instructor’s discretion. Students must wear clean, pressed uniform (do bok) to each grading and grading fees must be paid in advance.

The grading or rank system is designed so that a student training regularly can work towards grading, usually at intervals of 3 to 6 months during the colour belt levels. This means that immediately after a successful grading the student then begins learning the syllabus appropriate for the next grade level, which includes more advanced routines. Each student can develop skills at their own pace while working toward pre-determined goals and objectives.

The ranking system is divided into 19 stages, 10 of which are colour belt stages, known as ‘Kups’ and 9 belong to the black belt level, known as ‘Dans’. For example, Master Martin is a 7th Dan in Taekwondo.

Colour belt level begins at 10th Kup (white belt) and works its way up to 1st Kup (red belt with black tag). Black belts begin with 1st Dan, working up to the ultimate 9th Dan which is Grandmaster level. The Dan stages of black belt level are divided into three sections:

  • 1st to 3rd degree defined as novice black belts who are still only beginners in comparison to more senior ranks.
  • 4th to 6th degree are seen as having crossed into maturity and are classed as experts.
  • 7th to 9th degree consists of Taekwondo masters, those who have come to fully understand and perfect the particulars of Taekwondo, moth mentally and physically.
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