Welcome to Taekwondo! There is a lot to learn - here are a few of the most common questions.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

1. How does the belt system work?

The belt system follows the WTF (World Taekwondo Federation) recognized belts:

White belt

White belt yellow stripe 

Yellow belt

Yellow belt green stripe

Green belt 

Green belt blue stripe

Blue belt

Blue belt red stripe

Red belt

Red belt black stripe

Black belt 1st dan

2nd dan


5th dan (Master)

6th dan

7th dan (Grand Master)


10th dan

2. What are the tape stripes on the white belts?

The tape stripes are a system unique to each individual school and not WTF recognized. St-Lazare/Hudson Taekwondo uses the tape stripe system as a visual for other instructors to know the current skill level of the student. It is also a reward system. We've assigned the tape stripes as follows:

  • Yellow stripe = sliding, switching and front kick
  • Green stripe = a decent bichagi (hips turning), toes pointed
  • Blue stripe = power in the bichagi, decent idan (toes pointed), learning 360
  • Red stripe = powerful bichagi, powerful idan, powerful 360, learning back kick
  • Black stripe = this student is ready for the yellow belt test

3. How long does it take between each belt? And how long does it take to get to black belt?

It depends on: 

  • age
  • learning curve
  • practice frequency
  • dedication

On average, it usually takes 3-6 months to get to yellow belt: 3 months for kids over 10 years old and approximately 6 months for kids under 10 years old. With regular practice, the next full belt colour (stripes included) can be reached within a year or a little over a year. As a result, the black belt can be obtained within 4 to 6 years. But as described in Question #1, black belt is just the beginning.

4. What do I learn as a white belt?

You will learn the basic kicks on a hand held body shield and basic footwork. 

5. When can I compete? 

Competing starts once the athlete has reached yellow belt. Equipment needs to be purchased and the basic fighting (sparring) techniques are taught. 

6. What equipment will I need once I get to yellow belt?

As the equipment varies by taekwondo style, I must first clarify that we teach the Olympic WTF fighting style (World Taekwondo Federation). The following equipment must be WTF approved:

- chest protector

- arm guards

- leg guards

- jock (boys and girls)

- helmet

- mouthguard

7. What are the rules for sparring?

That's a big question! Here are the main rules for colour belt competition (note that the pointage system is constantly in flux and has changed multiple times within the past 2 years) : 

  • All kicks must land within the chest protector with sufficient force to be counted
  • No low kicks (below the chest protector) or head kicks allowed
  • 2 points for non-turning kicks (bichagi, idan)
  • 3 points for turning kicks (360, back kick)
  • Fighters must remain within the fighting square (or octagon) or the opponent will receive a point
  • Falling down (even accidentally) will result in a point being given to the opponent
  • 2 fighting rounds (juniors)

8. Do you have classes in summer?

YES!  Make sure you check the "CONTACT" page to know where we are or email us. While most of the year we are at Evergreen Elementary, we rarely have that gym during summer (day camps or renovations).   

9. How long are the sessions?

12 weeks except for summer! Summer is only 8 weeks. We have 4 sessions per year: Fall (Sept-Dec), Winter (Jan-March), Spring (April-June), Summer (July-Aug). 

10. The session has already started. Can I (or my child) still join?

Yes! Drop in to class! Monday's or Thursday's at 6:30 pm for kids or 7:30 pm for adults. Wear jogging pants and a loose fitting t-shirt. Don't be shy - you don't even have to call. Just come on in and try it out! If you enjoy it, we can chat after and get you registered!