Guide to Grading

Gradings are held 3 times a year, on a weekend day, at the end of each term: December, March and June.


  • Ensure the committee knows you want to grade at least 1 week in advance of the grading date
  • Familiarise yourself with what’s required of you by looking at the syllabus for your belt. In the Facebook closed group, click on the ‘photos’ tab, then the ‘albums’ tab, then the ‘Ki-TKD Syllabuses’ album.
  • Watch poomse videos, which can be found on Youtube, except Kibom poomse, which can be found in the Facebook closed group – click on the ‘photos’ tab, then the ‘videos’ tab, then the video of 2 people on a beach.
  • Ask the instructors at training, or other club members of a higher belt, if you need help with anything.
  • Understand the following instructions:
    • charyot (attention): stand with feet together and parallel
    • kyungnae (bow)
    • joonbi (ready): bring your hands up and down into fists at either side of your belt whilst exhaling


  • payment
  • dobok, washed and ironed
  • belt
  • licence booklet
  • your indomitable spirit


  • Arrive at least 30 minutes early before the official start time to hand in money, fill in a form and warm up.
  • Everyone is called to line up and repeat the TKD student oath after the instructor.
  • Junior belts grade first and will sit at the back of the room while higher belts leave to watch and wait for their grading.
  • Your name will be called with a position number. Stand up, raise your right hand and say “present” and go to the position, marked by a taped cross on the floor. Remember the position number.
  • When your grading group is in your positions, you’ll be asked to put your right hand up and identify yourself and current grade. (If you’re a white belt at your first grading, you are 10th kup.)
  • The instructor will go through the grading sheet – follow instructions, focus and do your best.
  • Finally you’ll be called one by one to the front table. Bow and listen to your feedback, then return to your position.
  • When dismissed, go to the back of the room and wait until everyone of your grade has finished their grading, after which you can leave the room (face the front table and bow before going out the door) to watch the rest of the gradings.


  • In combinations, after turning around, do the arm movements.
  • When asked to punch after a kick, unless otherwise specified, first do:
    • obverse punch after a linear kick e.g. front kick, push kick, downward kick
    • reverse punch after a turning kick e.g. bichagi, crescent kick
  • from joonbi (ready) position, when asked to do a combination, move:
    • right leg first for a combination that starts with an attack
    • left leg first for a combination that starts with a defensive move


  • There’s usually a seminar at the end of grading.
  • You won’t be told whether you’ve passed on the day of the grading.
  • You’ll get your certificate and new tag or belt at the first training session of the next term.
  • Once you are yellow tag (9th kup) you’ll be allowed to participate in competitions.


  • Stand with feet together and bow when entering and leaving the room.
  • If your belt loosens or you need to adjust your dobok during grading, turn around to face towards the back of the room away from the instructor to adjust.
  • When called up towards the front table, bow when you reach the table.
  • You’re expected to stay for the entire session, including the senior gradings which will occur after your grading; ask permission in advance to leave early.
  • You aren’t allowed to take photos or videos of grading.

[Ann Lu, social media officer]