It is said that everything you learn in TaeKwon-Do until you reach black belt is preparation!
To become a true master in the art you must conquer your fears and master your technique through 10 colour belts. Your journey to mastery begins once you reach 1st degree black belt.
The system of rank in TaeKwon-Do is shown by the various colours of the belts worn by the students.
White Belt – 10th Kup
White Belt, Yellow Tag – 9th Kup
Yellow Belt – 8th Kup
Yellow Belt, Green Tag – 7th Kup
Green Belt – 6th Kup
Green Belt, Blue Tag – 5th Kup
Blue Belt – 4th Kup
Blue Belt, Red Tag – 3rd Kup
Red Belt – 2nd Kup
Red Belt, Black Tag – 1st Kup
Black 1st, 2nd & 3rd Degree – Novice
Black 4th, 5th & 6th Degree – International Instructor (Sabum)
Black 7th & 8th Degree – Master (Sahyun)
Black 9th Degree – Grand Master (Sasung)
Black Belt (1st degree) – This rank takes 3-5 years of dedication to reach, the tradition is that only after achieving this rank, the pupil is considered to be a true student of TaeKwon-Do. Although a great achievement, it is far from the end, rather it is the beginning of the true journey.
1st, 2nd & 3rd degree black belt (Novice) – Perfection of everything that has been learnt, the student can be considered as an assistant instructor and pass on knowledge to colour belts.
4th-6th degree black belt (Expert) – A serious achievement, the student has dedicated twice as long to training as a black belt as they have as a coloured belt. They are now considered an instructor and addressed as Sabum.
7th to 8th degree black belt (Master) – The TaeKwon-Do elite, usually 30 years of training or more, there are no more formal examinations after this.
9th Degree (Grand Master) – The ultimate culmination of what is a life time of dedication to the art of TaeKwon-Do.