Belts & Grading

CertificateLike most martial arts, in Taekwondo, belt colours signify that a person has achieved a certain rank. The ranking system also includes intermediate ranks signified with tags. These indicate that a student is between coloured belts and on their way to the next grade. The tags should be positioned the width of the belt away from the end (i.e. if the belt is 5cm wide, then the tags should be 5cm away from each end of the belt).

There are also ranks of black belt ranging from 1st Dan to 9th Dan.

Regular attendance at lessons is essential if students wish to be considered for grading and students who attend twice a week are eligible to grade every 3 months. Students who only attend once a week have to wait 6 months. Only students who have achieved the standard set by the instructors within this period will be allowed to grade.

Coloured belt gradings are conducted by a Master grade of 4th Dan or above.

Black belt gradings are conducted by a Master grade of 6th Dan or above.

The following describes how the grades are ordered and which belt signifies each grade. You can click on each grade to see what techniques are required for each one.




10th Kup
Signifies innocence, as that of the beginning student who has no previous knowledge of Taekwondo
9th Kup  
White with Yellow tag
8th Kup
Signifies Earth, from which a plant sprouts and takes root as the Taekwondo foundation is being laid
7th Kup  
Yellow with Green tag
6th Kup
Signifies the plant's growth as Taekwondo skills begin to develop
5th Kup  
Green with Blue tag
4th Kup
Signifies the heaven towards which the plant matures into a towering tree as training in Taekwondo progresses
3rd Kup  
Blue with Red tag
2nd Kup
Signifies danger, cautioning the student to exercise control, and warning the opponent to stay away
1st Kup  
Red with Black tag
1st Dan
Opposite of white: therefore signifying a Student's maturity and proficiency in Taekwondo. Also indicates the wearers' imperviousness to darkness and fear


How to tie a belt

Below are some instructions on how to tie a belt:

1. Hold the belt at its centre, ends even, with badge (or stripes) on the left-hand side.
2. Place the centre of belt on the front centre of your jacket, about one inch below the naval (a location called the tanden). Wrap the belt around your waist, crossing the right side over the left side at centre of the back. The badge will now be on your right side. Pull the ends of belt forward and adjust so the ends are even.
How to tie a belt - step 2
3. Lay the left side of belt over your tanden. Lay the right side of belt across your tanden. The badge will now be on your left side again.
How to tie a belt - step 3
4. Slide the left side of the belt (side with the badge) under and behind all of the belt layers at the tanden. The badge will still be on your left side.
How to tie a belt - step 4
5. Loop the right-hand end back.
How to tie a belt - step 5
6. Bring the left (badge) end of the belt down and over the front of the U-shape made with the right-hand side.
How to tie a belt - step 6
7. Loop the badge end under and up through the U-shape to form a knot.
How to tie a belt - step 7
8. Pull the ends of the belt outward to tighten the knot. The badge will be on your right-hand side.
How to tie a belt - step 8
9. Adjust the knot so the ends of the belt are even and hang down neatly.
How to tie a belt - step 9