System of Belts
The system of rank in Taekwon-Do is denoted by various colours of the belts worn by its practitioners.
- Black 9th Degree - Grand Master (Sasung)
- Black 7th & 8th Degree - Master (Sahun)
- Black 4th, 5th & 6th Degree - International Instructor (Sabum)
- Black 1st, 2nd & 3rd Degree - Novice
- Red Belt, Black Tag - 1st Kup
- Red Belt - 2nd Kup
- Blue Belt, Red Tag - 3rd Kup
- Blue Belt - 4th Kup
- Green Belt, Blue Tag - 5th Kup
- Green Belt - 6th Kup
- Yellow Belt, Green Tag - 7th Kup
- Yellow Belt - 8th Kup
- White Belt, Yellow Tag - 9th Kup
- White Belt - 10th Kup
The above colours have not been randomly chosen. They are in fact, steeped in tradition. Colours of Black, Red and Blue denote the various levels of hierarchy during the Koguryo and Silla Dynasties in Korea.
The degrees of Black Belt are divided into three distinct classes. The 1st through 3rd degree are considered the novice stages of Black Belt. Students are still merely beginners in comparison to higher degrees.
At 4th degree, the student crosses the threshold of puberty and enters the expert class.
7th to 8th is composed of the Tae- kwon-Do Masters - the elite who fully understand all the particulars of Taekwon-Do, mental and physical with the 9th degree signifying the pinnacle of what is usually a life time of dedication to the art.
A black belt with a white ribbon running the length of it on one side indicates a junior (under 16 yrs.) Black Belt exponent.