Training Diet

When you are a Taekwon-Do student, you know that you should fill your body with a healthy diet for your hard training. But there are some food myths that are still believed by almost everyone, even Taekwon-Do students and black belts.

Incorrect Food Pyramid

The food pyramid clearly shows that wheat foods such as bread and pasta are the best for you, and that fats like butter are the worst. This is actually wrong! People dieting to lose weight that exclude the wheat grains actually lose more weight, whereas butter is a sort of good fat that actually helps you lose weight rather than gain it. Of course, sugery drinks like cola are bad for you- very correct- but diet sodas are actually even worse! They are sweetened with artificial sweeteners, which make you gain more weight than regular sugar. Splenda was actually created by accident in a lab. If you can’t believe this, do an internet search and find it to be true, or read the book Eat Fat, Lose Fat or Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon. And if you need it from a TKD point of view, read this really great article by Taekwondo champion David Walsch. Here are some good replacements for foods that are advertised to be good for you but are actually bad for you.

Margerine-replace with-Butter

Low-fat yogurt-replace with– Whole Milk Yogurt

Splenda-replace with-Stevia or rapadura sugar

Low-fat milk--replace with-Whole Milk or Raw Milk

Diet Coke-replace with– Honey Cola

Canola Oil-replace with-Palm Oil

Corn Syrup-replace with-Honey, Agave syrup, or maple syrup

Wheat bread-replace with-Sourdough bread

And of course, all of the above should be eaten organically, or at least all-natural. The best athletes eat organic foods. Below is some proof:

“Grand Master H. U. Lee of the American Taekwondo Association believed in eating healthy and organic foods such as fruits.”

“American Olympic medalist, snowboarder Lindsey Jacobellis states she strictly eats organic food to maintain a healthy and fit body.”

Snowboarder Hannah Teter, gold medalist Olympic athlete: “I’m basically on an organic-only diet. I don’t go to restaurants that don’t serve organic—ever. I cook at home most of the time and I enjoy eating super-healthy, pesticide-free food all the time… Everyone’s calling me “Hannah Organa” and I think that’s really funny, because they know I’m full-on.”


TKD Gifs

Free Taekwon-Do gifs are so hard to find online. They are either on a nasty pop-up filled site, a site that only offers two, or a site that offers a bunch of Japanese Warriors!  That’s why I’ve found them for you- just right-button click on your mouse and select the “save to your computer” button, or use Ctrl and C at the same time to copy them for your own use. Hit Ctrl and V to paste.


Karate_kick_2.gif - (11K)Turning-kickKarate kick - Click image to download.Flying side kickKarate fighter 2 - Click image to download. Quick side kicksKarate fight - Click image to download. Counter-attacker         Karate 3 - Click image to download.     Sparring     Karate 2 - Click image to download. High kick

Karate match - Click image to download.Ho Sin Sul throwRayners Lane Taekwon-DoCool Demo Dude  cantwell_taekwondo.gif image by spiritofthebruce UFC TKD? Karate.gif Karate GIF image by MangafairyQuick Hand Combo

Animated Sport - Martial ArtsStep-Sparring   animated gifsL-stance Animated Sport - Martial ArtsDouble-front kickerFree Animations Take-down Free AnimationsKnife-hand man

 Player with most highscoresGold  Player on 2nd placeSilver Player on 3rd place Bronze  Guy kicking bag No-shirt bag training Sparring gear kicker pair-gif.gif Punch Training

fight.gif Black belt step-sparring yinyangspin-gif.gif  Yin-Yang girlkarate_kickgif.gifGirl high kicker kick_whitegif.gif Side kick

Have some good gifs? Share them in a comment!


ITF Sparring


ITF Sparring


Sparring is the term for practice-fighting in a Taekwon-Do class. It is also the kind of fighting most commonly used at tournaments. The ITF-style Taekwon-Do practitioners practice continuous point-sparring, and the WTF style also does, but in a very different way. Other Taekwon-Do schools or styles will practice one-point sparring; every time a point is scored in competition the match is stopped and it is awarded. Generally ‘light-contact’ is the allowed power in tournaments, but very often ‘light-contact’ means to go nearly as hard as you can! Top-Ten sparring gear is the offical ITF sparring gear, and Adidas is the WTF’s offical equipment brand.

You are not allowed to go to the ground, hit to the back, or kick below the belt in ITF-style sparring, but in competition hitting to the face is allowed. In WTF style, punches rarely count or are even used, and chest protectors are required. Switch kicks are commonly used as the bread-and-butter technique in this Olympic-style sport Taekwondo. Often electric scoring methods are used in the WTF, where each kick will count as a point automatically, no corner-judges required. Honestly, this can become a problem because some good kicks won’t be counted, while other kicks with incorrect technique will be. The ITF sparring points are counted by hand by four corner judges. Any punch is one point. Any standing kick is two points. Any jumping kick to the head is three points. Wins by knockout are not encouraged, but it has been known to happen.

Sparring is different from fighting in the fact that the emphasis is on point-scoring, whereas in a real fight points don’t matter and you can attack to vital spot such as the eyes, philtrum, groin, and solar plexus. Many do-jangs will also teach what you should do in a real fight as opposed to tournament sparring.

This kind of sparring is not to be confused with Pre-Arranged Free Sparring and Step-Sparring, which are pre-arranged self defense sequences and, while effective for teaching techniques and for demonstration, is nothing like actual sparring.

Belt Meanings

The belt meanings may vary slightly between styles or do-jangs.

ITF and WTF Belt Meanings:

White : Signifies innocence. No previous knowledge of Taekwon-Do, a beginner student that is innocent like a newborn baby when it comes to Taekwon-Do or a blank page yet to be filled.

Yellow : Represents the earth where the seed of Taekwon-Do is planted as the foundation of Taekwon-Do is beginning.

Green : Represents the green plants that grow from the earth, just as the practioners grows in his or her knowledge and skill in Taekwon-Do.

Blue : Signifies the sky and the heavens, towards which the tree grows as Taekwon-Do training progresses.

Red : Signifies danger, because most red belts have good technique and no control, and therefore are dangerous to others and sometimes to themselves. The red belt should be cautious and try to have self-control.

Black : The opposite of white, therefore signifying a maturity and proficiency in Taekwon-Do. It also indicates the wearer’s imperviousness to darkness and fear.

ATA/Songham Belt Meanings:

White: Pure and without knowledge of Songahm Taekwondo. As with the Pine Tree, the seed must now be planted and nourished to develop strong roots.

Orange: The sun is beginning to rise. As with the morning’s dawn, only the beauty of the sunrise is seen rather than the immense power.

Yellow: The seed is beginning to see the sunlight.

Camo: The sapling is hidden amongst the taller pines and must now fight its way upwards.

Green: The pine tree is beginning to develop and grow in strength.

Purple: Coming to the mountain. The tree is mid-growth and now the path becomes steep.

Blue: The tree reaches for the sky towards new heights.

Brown: The tree is firmly rooted in the earth.

Red: The sun is setting. The first phase of growth has been accomplished.

Red-Black: The dawn of a new day. The sun breaks through the darkness.

1st Degree: The tree reached maturity and has overcome the darkness. It must now begin to ‘plant seeds for the future.’

2nd Degree: With your noble character, you will develop a new permanence in your life.

3rd Degree: Peace of mind & tranquility.

WTF Poomsae

The WTF Poomsae:

  • Il Jang
  • Yi Jang
  • Sam Jang
  • Sa Jang
  • O jang
  • Yuk Jang
  • Chil Jang
  • Pal Jang
  • Koryo
  • Keum Gang
  • Tae Beck
  • Pyong Won
  • Sip Jin
  • Ji Tae
  • Chon Kwon
  • Han Su
  • Il Yo


The ITF Patterns (Tul):

  • Four-Direction Punch/Saju-Jirugi
  • Four-Direction Block/Saju-Makgi
  • Four-Direction Thrust (not always taught)
  • Chon-Ji
  • Dan-Gun
  • Do-San
  • Won-Hyo
  • Yul-Gok
  • Joong-Gun
  • Toi-Gye
  • Hwa-Rang
  • Choong-Moo
  • Kwang-Gae
  • Po-Eun
  • Ge-Baek
  • Eui-Am
  • Choong-Jang
  • Juche
  • Ko-Dang (“lost pattern,” was replaced by Juche and is rarely taught)
  • Sam-Il
  • Yoo-Sin
  • Choi-Yong
  • Yon-Gae
  • Ul-Ji
  • Moon-Moo
  • So-San
  • Se-Jong
  • Tong-Il

Visit the Pattern Info page for pattern meanings


ITF & Similar:
The Encyclopedia of Taekwon-Do by General Choi Hong-Hi (15 volumes)
Taekwon-Do and I  by General Choi Hong-Hi (2 volumes)
Ch’ang Hon Taekwon-Do Hae Sul by Stuart Paul Anslow
The Encyclopedia of Taekwon-Do Patterns by Stuart Paul Anslow (3 volumes)
Effective Taekwon-Do Sparring by Master Jim Hogan and James Home
Taekwon-Do Patterns by Master Jim Hogan
A Killing Art by Alex Gillis

Taekwon-Do and I by General Choi Hong Hi (2 volumes)
A Killing Art by Alex Gillis

The New Toughness Training for Sports by James E. Loehr


Find Taekwon-Do videos at the following sites:

LVTKD Videos


Below are FAQs as designed for new Taekwon-Do students, particularly the ITF-style.
Courtesy of

Q. Is Taekwon-Do the same as Karate?
A. No. Taekwon-Do is ‘the way of the hands and the feet,’ created by General Choi Hong-Hi on April 11th, 1955. He took Shotokan Karate and Taek-Kyun, a Korean martial art, and changed them into Taekwon-Do. Taekwon-Do is the scientific use of the body in the method of self-defense. This martial art has no equal in either power or technique. Most of the devastating maneuvers are based specifically on the initial impact of a blow plus the consequential additional force provided by the rebound of the opponent’s moving part of the body. Although this Korean Art of Self-Defense was created from Karate and Taek-Kyun, it is completely different.
Q. What are the benefits of Taekwon-Do?
A. General Choi Hong-Hi, the father of Taekwon-Do says ‘…Taekwon-Do is an art of self-defense which aims at a noble moral rearmament, high degree of intellectual achievement, graceful techniques, formidable power at beauty of physical form…’ Through the scientific practice of Taekwon-Do a person can significantly improve his or her heath and nourish his intellect. Taekwon-Do will help one get in and stay in good shape. Moral society is characterized by self discipline, sacrifice, and devotion- dedication to the art can promote change toward a moral society. If you are interesting in playing a sport or are playing a sport right now, Taekwon-Do will help you become better at all sports you try. Taekwon-Do develops your hand, eye, foot coordination; reflexes, speed, quickness, tones your muscles to run faster and jump higher. It teaches you courtesy and indomitable spirit.
Q. Will I or my child get hurt?
A. ‘Wrongly applied, Taekwon-Do can be a lethal weapon’ says General Choi Hong-Hi, the founder of Taekwon-Do, ‘therefore mental training must always be stressed to prevent the student from misusing it.’ During the Student Oath, the students say, ‘I shall never misuse Taekwon-Do’ and ‘I shall build a more peaceful world.’ The fourth tenet is ‘self-control.’ Yes, it is possible one could be hurt during Taekwon-Do practice, but never severely. The students spar each other from gold stripe and up, wearing protective equipment so they don’t hurt themselves or others. We never have anyone go all-out during free sparring, so the only way someone could get hurt is by accident. During class, the students stand far enough away from each other so no one unknowingly hits another student when practicing. Taekwon-Do, although a martial art, is not practiced so that students can hurt each other. It is practiced so that the students know how to fight so that they don’t have to.
Q. Is it ever too late to start Taekwon-Do?
A. No! Taekwon-Do is for anyone from 6 to 106, It is suitable for the young and old, male and female. Whether you are taking it to learn self-defense, for the exercise, or for self-discipline, the enjoyment derived will justify the time invest and spent. Taekwon-Do can become a way of life, for one person or for the whole family. Every student can go at his or her own pace, learning at the speed that they learn. Hours spent on training, at home or at the do-jang, will not be wasted.
Q. Can anyone take Taekwon-Do?
A. Anyone can take Taekwon-Do, male or female, young or old, strong or weak. Everyone can benefit from the martial art. Young children ages 6 and up can begin classes, and anyone else, older children, teenagers, adults and the elderly can take the ‘way of the hands and the feet’ too.
Q. Are all Taekwon-Do styles the same?
A. No. There is a large amount of styles of Taekwon-Do. Visit the Organizations page on BestTKD to see what they are.
Q. How long does it take to get to black belt and how many belts are there?
A. There are six belt colors which are white, gold, green, blue, red and black. Between each belt advancement is a stripe level. Total there are 11 levels to achieve a black belt. Then there will be all the degrees of black belt, 1st degree to 9th degree. How long does it take to get to black belt? If you don’t miss too many classes, try your hardest and pass your tests, you will reach black belt in three years. But black belt is only the beginning, and just because you get to black belt doesn’t mean you are a master of the martial art.
Q. What about tests?
A. You will test for your gold stripe after 18 classes as a white belt, and will keep testing from there after you have been your belt or stripe for a certain amount of time and know your patterns and other testing requirements for each belt and stripe well. Everyone goes at their own pace, so if you need longer to learn things it is no big deal. What about failing tests? It is possible to fail a test, but if you do you will be able to test again in a little bit. Most people who test pass, because your instrutor probably doesn’t let people test if they are really not ready. The tests are done at class and the student who is testing (usually with other students) will do his or her pattern, free sparring pattern and releases or Step Sparring, and will break a board, and spar no-contact against another student if the testing student is a gold stripe or higher.
Q. Who is General Choi Hong-Hi?
A. General Choi Hong-Hi is the creator of Taekwon-Do. He founded it on April 11th, 1955, and worked very hard to make it the best it could be. He died in 2002, but before his death wrote great works including the 15-volume Encyclopedia of Taekwon-Do, Taekwon-Do: The Condensed Encyclopedia and his memoirs, Taekwon-Do and I volumes 1 and 2.
Q. Is Taekwon-Do going to be too hard?
A. What would be the point of doing anything if it was easy? Taekwon-Do is sometimes hard, but is great training and helps you get better and better at what you’ve learned. White belts have it easier than higher belts, and as you gain more knowledge and skill in Taekwon-Do you learn more difficult things. Red belts, black stripes and black belts have the choice to attend the Red and Black Belt class, which is twice a month. Taekwon-Do is difficult, but awesome. But if an adult cannot do back-bridges because of a sore back, or a child cannot do push-ups because of an injured wrist, no one is forced to something they are not yet capable of doing. Remember, the easy choice isn’t always the best choice, and even if Taekwon-Do is sometimes hard, that is no reason to think you cannot handle it.


Belt Grades

ITF and other General Choi Hong Hi’s style- Taekwon-Do organizations:
Note: ‘Gup‘ is sometimes spelled ‘Kup’ or ‘Geup’ and ‘Stripe‘ is also called ‘Tag’ and ‘Tip.’
ITF and similar practitioners averagely take 3-4 years to get their 1st dan, if practicing 1-3 classes per week for an hour or more.

  • White Belt (10th Gup)
  • Gold/Yellow Stripe (9th Gup)
  • Gold/Yellow Belt (8th Gup)
  • Green Stripe (7th Gup)
  • Green Belt (6th Gup)
  • Blue Stripe (5th Gup)
  • Blue Belt (4th Gup)
  • Red Stripe (3rd Gup)
  • Red Belt (2nd Gup)
  • Black Stripe (1st Gup)
  • 1st Dan Black Belt (becomes Novice Black Belt)
  • 2nd Dan Black Belt
  • 3rd Dan Black Belt
  • 4th Dan Black Belt (becomes Expert Black Belt)
  • 5th Dan Black Belt
  • 6th Dan Black Belt
  • 7th Dan Black Belt (becomes Master)
  • 8th Dan Black Belt
  • 9th Dan Black Belt (becomes Grandmaster)
  • ITF Belt Colors



    ITF belt colors include stripes

    between the full color belts.

    Stripes are just as important as the

    big color belts.






    WTF Belt Grades:
    Note: WTF color belts vary highly depending on the school, therefore a world-wide belt establishment is not avaliable to add here. It is usually simmilar to the ITF belts, sometimes with additional colors such as orange or purple or brown. Below, however, are the WTF black belt grades.
    WTF practitioners averagely take 2 years to get their 1st dan when practicing 1-3 45 minute classes per week.

  • Poom (a black belt for children 15 or 16 or under. Exactly like a black belt, but held only until an official black belt is awarded once the child is old enough.)
  • 1st Dan Black Belt
  • 2nd Dan Black Belt
  • 3rd Dan Black Belt
  • 4th Dan Black Belt
  • 5th Dan Black Belt (becomes a Master)
  • 6th Dan Black Belt
  • 7th Dan Black Belt
  • 8th Dan Black Belt (becomes a Grandmaster)
  • 9th Dan Black Belt
  • 10th Dan Black Belt
  • WTF Belt Colors


     General WTF Belt colors

    are simmilar to the ITF colors.







    ATA (Songham) Belt Grades:
    Note: ATA practitioners averagely take 1 year to get their 1st degree.

  • White Belt (9th Grade)
  • Orange Belt (8th Grade)
  • Yellow Belt (7th Grade)
  • Camo Belt (6th Grade)
  • Green Belt (5th Grade)
  • Purple Belt (4th Grade)
  • Blue Belt (3rd Grade)
  • Brown Belt (2nd Grade)
  • Red Belt (1st Grade)
  • 1st Degree Black Belt
  • 2nd Degree Black Belt
  • 3rd Degree Black Belt
  • 4th Degree Black Belt
  • 5th Degree Black Belt
  • 6th Degree Black Belt
  • 7th Degree Black Belt (becomes a Master)
  • 8th Degree Black Belt
  • 9th Degree Black Belt (becomes a Grandmaster)
  • ATA Belt Colors


     ATA belt colors

    include purple, orange, and camo

    which ITF and WTF do not have.







    Please Comment If You Have More Belt Information!

    Previous Older Entries Next Newer Entries

    %d bloggers like this: