The RANKS in Tae Kwon Do differ from those of other styles. There are two main groups of ranks: 10 to 1 grades (GUP or KUP) and 1 to 9 degrees (DANS). Each grade has two levels of achievement. This is recognizable by color of the belt (level I) or by the color of stripe (level II). To check and practically see the degree of progress of the student there are examinations which show for all involved such as the public, the students as well as the instructor the level of one's proficiency and knowledge. The requirements differ slightly with each club (dojang or school), but generally the examinations are conducted every two to three months, 4 hours per week, i.e. 2 hr classes twice a week or one hour classes 4 times a week".

First degree Black Belt through Third degree Black Belt are considered "NOVICES," the 4th to 7th are "MASTERS," and the 8th and 9th "GRANDMASTERS."

With degrees, number nine (9) is the highest, which is the highest digital number. But this is not the only reason. The other reason is that three multiplied by itself produces number nine. The numbers one and three have always been held in high esteem (religious influence: three in one, one God--monotheism, three---trinity in Christian religion, Buddhism.)
The Chinese character representing three is called KHIEN and it is written as three long horizontal lines.

It is one of the four trigrams of the Korean flag. The upper line symbolizes heaven, the middle line stands for mortals and the lower line symbolizes Earth.

There is also a half Black and half Red for a Junior Black Belt in the WTF and a half Black and half White for a Junior in the ITF.
Between the 1st grade Red Belt and the 1st degree Black Belt is an additional belt called CHO-DAN BO. It is a temporary black belt that lasts for one year. The belt is solid black with no stripes. At the end of the year the student Cho-Dan Bo tests again to make sure he is serious about the rank of Black Belt.


How Martial Arts Can Change Your Life
Getting training in the ancient practice of martial arts really does change a person.
If you ask anyone who has trained in it before, they will tell you the same thing.
It is not a hobby. Oh no. It may start off as one, but it gradually evolves into a lifestyle.
It is not an easy road, but the benefits it has on you are overwhelming.

One of the most rewarding aspects of practicing a martial art is earning the differently colored belts
as you progress through the skill levels within the art.
It is a mark of honor that is carried through life, and each belt has its own rank in the hierarchy.
Thanks to these GRAPHICS, you can find out more about these and their applications in different art forms here:


Martial Arts and Their Physical and Psychological Benefits The main benefit is obviously that it gets you into the best shape of your life. If you have a bad metabolism, and you feel like you are getting a little paunchy, guess what? Martial arts in any form can help you be fit, confident and happy again. You also gain a lot of self-discipline, which is a huge perk especially in the working man or woman. You stop looking for ways to avoid bad situations and you actually push through them instead. Finally, you learn to be dedicated to the sport. It is not an easy road, but you learn to stick to the training and actually dedicate a part of each day to making yourself better at it. In the long run, it turns you into someone who you can be proud of.

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Updated on MAY 17, 2016!