Southbury Taekwon-do SOUTHBURY​ TAEKWON-DO Taekwon-do International
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Dojang (School) Rules

Members of Southbury Taekwon-do should adhere to certain rules and guidelines. These are required for several reasons, which include safety and ethics. Conduct and behavior, regardless of rank, must at all times reflect the respect that the Dojang deserves.

  • Students must observe the safety of others at all times; unnecessary roughness is not permitted; intentional excessive contact is prohibited; If you are injured notify the instructor immediately
  • Inappropriate or disruptive language is strictly prohibited; horseplay is not allowed at any time in the Dojang
  • When entering the Dojang, students must bow to the flags, to the Instructors, and to the black belts; This gesture shows respect and acknowledges that this is a place of learning; Students must bow to the instructors upon greeting; always return a bow when someone bows to you
  • If you are late for class, quietly wait at the edge of the floor until the instructor motions you to join the class; If you must leave while class is in progress, ask the instructor for permission and leave without disturbing the class
  • Show respect to instructors and Black Belts. Students must address an instructor by "Sab-bum-nim" (teacher) or by their title and surname such as such as "Mr. Smith" or "Dr. Jones"; Similarly, blackbelts should always be referred to by their last names with the appropriate title; Blackbelts of 4th Dan or higher should be referred to by the title "Master," and blackbelts of 8th Dan or higher should be referred to by the title "Grandmaster"
  • When lining up "by rank," students should arrange themselves in lines with the highest ranks in the front row with the most senior member to the front right; if two students are of the same rank, the older student is positioned to the right
  • With the exception of flat wedding bands, students should remove all jewelry and watches before participating in class
  • Religious items and cultural clothing that are non-removable must be covered and taped in a manner that keeps both the wearer and others safe
  • Treat your belt with the same respect that you would a flag; Do not allow it to become soiled or damaged
  • The Dobok (Taekwon-do uniform) must be clean and neat; toenails and fingernails should be cut short, and the body and feet should be kept clean
  • In general, conversations should be limited and at low volume — especially when one class is finishing and another is starting
  • Never demonstrate or teach Taekwon-do to anyone outside the Dojang without instructor permission; practicing Taekwon-do at home is encouraged as long as you stay within the boundaries of what you have been taught at the Dojang; children should have permission from parents to practice at home
  • Do not engender ill feelings or rivalry with students of other schools or anyone within our Dojang


Why We Bow:
Bowing is the traditional way to show respect and discipline in the martial arts. In TaekwonDo, bowing is not an indication of complete submission to one’s senior. It is a sign of mutual respect. A bow can be used for different purposes. For example, it may be a greeting or an indication that a junior would like to speak to his senior. A bow can mean “thank you” or “I understand”. In training, before starting free sparring or step sparring or other practices involving two or more people, those involved bow to each other. When finished, they bow again.

It is essential that the bow be executed in full consciousness of the meaning of the gesture. It must never become automatic or be done half-heartedly.

How to Bow:
When students bow you must first stand to attention; fists should be lightly clenched at your side with elbows bent slightly; when you bow, bend forward at the waist approximately 15 degrees keeping your back straight and your eyes on whom you are bowing to.

  1. If you are wearing a hat, remove it and put down anything you are carrying so your hands are empty
  2. Stop moving and stand to attention with your heels together, with your feet at a 45°ree; angle such that the form a "V" shape
  3. Hold your arms straight at a 30°ree; angle from the sides of your body with your hands clenched loosely
  4. Bend forward from the waist to a 15°ree; angle from upright
  5. Keep your head up so you can look forward at the person or object you are bowing to, not down at the floor
  6. If you are bowing to a senior, maintain the bowing position until the senior bows to you and wait until the senior starts to straighten up before doing so yourself

When to Bow:

  • When entering or leaving the practice area (Do-jang), always bow to the instructor(s) and then to the flag at the front of the room; if there is no flag, bow to the center of the room
  • Always bow to the instructor at the start and end of class, according to instruction
  • If an instructor calls upon you to come to the front of the class, such as for a demonstration, always bow to the instructor as you arrive; when leaving the instructor you should bow and take three steps back before turning away from them
  • Before sparing, always bow, then shake your opponent's hand while greeting them by name; after sparing, bow again and thank them
  • Always bow at the beginning and end of a form (pattern)
  • In competition, when entering or leaving the ring
  • When in doubt, bow


Behavior on the Training Floor

Students should be attentive to their instructor at all times during a training session.

When the instructor addresses the class as a whole, all students should pause what they are doing to listen to the instructor. If the instructor addresses only a few specific members of the class, the other students can continue training but should lower their noise level so the instructor can better converse with the group that he or she is working with.

After the instructor gives the class or an individual a direction, it is important to give an affirmation such as, "Yes Sir," or "Yes Ma'am", as appropriate, to let the instructor know that the direction was understood.

Upon receiving the instructor's direction, students should comply as quickly as they can. For example, if an instructor says "Class, line up," then all the students should say "Yes Sir," and promptly line up.

Train to be focused. Do not become distracted because someone enters the training room. Always focus on your partner’s eyes or straight ahead at the target on your imaginary opponent. Always look at your instructor when she or he is demonstrating. Focus, pay attention and train yourself to be mentally alert, aware, and prepared.

If a student's belt or uniform needs adjusting, the student should turn clockwise away from the front of the class before making any adjustments. Once the adjustments have been made, turn clockwise to face the front of the class.

Email Etiquette

  1. Ensure that you use the correct and appropriate language.
  2. Do not send unwanted jokes or email to your seniors.
  3. Do not provide your seniors or other Taekwon-Do students email addresses to others without their permission.

      "Strength doesn't come from what you can do. It comes from overcoming the things you once thought you couldn't." - Rikki Rogers

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