On average it will take approximately 2-4 months (depending on age, attendance, effort level and learning rate) to advance from a white belt to a yellow belt. Progress towards a new belt rank is marked by colored stripes of tape that are placed on your current belt. As a beginner it is not unusual to feel awkward as you start learning. However, with consistency and a positive attitude, these feelings will quickly pass. Remember, no one is expecting you to master your requirements over¬night. You have plenty of time and will receive personalized guidance and encouragement throughout your training. Please note there is a fee for each time a student test for a new belt.
Note to Beginners
Neither fear nor expect too much. Many have a feeling of inadequacy with regards to movements to be performed – this is common and short-lived. You are not an expert now, but a beginner and learning. It’s okay to make mistakes for that is how you learn and why you have an instructor. Expecting too much at the beginning is like eating more than your stomach can hold – you can’t digest it all and it leaves you feeling poorly. Remember, as a beginner, with some hard work and patience you will achieve what you want from Tae Kwon Do – for even your instructors started just where you are now.
The BASICS are a beginner’s foundation upon which he or she builds. If the basics are rushed, not broad enough and not fully understood, all above will crumble. It is important for the practicing student to always remember to keep a beginner’s mind by looking and reviewing things he or she knows, and to learn them well, understand them, for even the foundation needs attention once in a while. Knowing is never finished.
THE BASICS ARE A PUZZLE.
ONCE YOU KNOW THEM, YOU NEVER NEED TO THINK OF THEM.
IF YOU DON’T KNOW THEM, YOU CAN NEVER GET PAST THEM.
IF YOU KNOW THEM, THEY ARE NOTHING.
IF YOU DON’T KNOW THEM, THEY ARE EVERYTING.
TAKE THE TIME TO MAKE THEM NOTHING, FOR THEY ARE EVERYTHING.
Training is a journey that never ends, always with more miles and obstacles to reach an outcome. Realize your own limitations and by using discipline, wipe them away. Dare to challenge the limits set before you, expect the unexpected, and meet all trials without hesitation.
The stripe system was created as a motivational tool for students and as an aid to the instructors to track the progress of students as they work towards achieving their next belts.
Stripes can be tested for during class or between classes. Ask Mater or instructors when you are ready.
Minimum classes required to test for first stripe:
- White-Orange: 4 classes
- Green-Blue: 5 classes
- Brown-Deputy: 8 classes
Yellow Stripe – Basic
- White - Blue: focus, basic kicks & kyorugi step
- Brown: basic kicks, kyorugi step & Blue belt poomsae
- Red: basic kicks, kyorugi step & Yellow – Purple poomsaes
- Deputy: basic kicks, 1 – 9 kyorugi steps & White – Red belt poomsaes
Light Blue Stripe – Form
- White – Deputy: poomsae
Red Stripe – To Test
- White - Blue: black belt philosophy, Korean terms and current belt 1-step sparing
- Brown: Black belt philosophy, Korean terms and Blue – Brown belt 1-step sparing
- Red: Black belt philosophy, Korean terms and White – Orange and Red 1-step sparring
- Deputy: Black belt philosophy and White – Deputy belt 1-step sparing
Dark Blue Stripe – Breaking
- White – Brown: board breaking with current belt technique
- Red: 3 stations
- Deputy: 4 stations