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Universal Martial Arts :: FAQ's

Frequently asked questions


What is Taekwon-Do?

Taekwon-Do is a Korean Martial Art which utilises powerful kicks & punches to rapidly defeat an attacker. Advanced students will also learn the throws, joint locks and pressure-point techniques found within the Taekwon-Do forms  which makes it a complete martial art.

How long does it take to become a Black Belt?

It can vary from style to style, and also according to the ability and amount of training the student puts in. A good guide is between 3 –5 years


Is my child too young?

We accept students from the ages of 5 and up, however, people are individuals, and it is not uncommon for children a little younger than 5 to take to the art. In the same way some 5 years olds find it a little challenging. We have found that some younger children make better progress by having a parent in the class with them. We have also found that most of the parents find that they enjoy the classes as much as their children! 

The best recommendation is to contact an instructor to discuss your concerns.

Am I too old?

The criteria for adults starting should not be based on age. We ensure that our beginners classes are suitable for all. We have many students training with us who began in their 40's or 50's. It is not uncommon for those in their 60’s or 70’s to start!

We do our best to ensure that all exercises and techniques are suitable for the student practicing them. Everyone trains at their own level regardless of physical age, allowing everyone to make safe progress in our classes.

What are the belt colours in Taekwon-Do?

Taekwon-Do, like most martial arts, uses a system of different coloured belts to help mark students’ progress. The primary colours are White, Yellow, Green, Blue, Red and finally Black. The Black Belt is denominated by Degree or “DAN” A student who has just achieved a black belt is a 1st Degree or 1st DAN. Dan grades are usually shown on the left hand side of the belt in roman numerals.

What is the highest grade in Taekwon-Do?

9th Degree Black Belt (Grand Master) This would typically take more than 40 years of dedication to Taekwon-Do. Grand Masters are selected only from the very best of the 8th Degree Senior Masters who meet the strict criteria for the terminal degree.

How is Taekwon-Do different from other Martial Arts?

The many different martial arts may look quite different to the untrained eye. However, once a student has mastered the many skills of Taekwon-Do, they will begin to notice the similarities between these fighting systems not the differences.

That said, most martial arts can be pigeon-holed into two distinct types:

(a) Striking Arts, e.g. Karate, Kung-Fu & Boxing/Kick Boxing. These styles generally teach “DIRECT” techniques

(b) Throwing & Joint-Locking Arts e.g. Aikido, Judo, Ju-Jitsu. These styles generally teach “INDIRECT” techniques.

The Taekwon-Do taught at Universal Martial Arts Academies utilises BOTH of these
aspects to create a complete fighting system.


I’m not naturally flexible, will I ever be able to kick effectively?

Most students are not naturally flexible, however with regular training using the correct methods, all students will see improvements in their flexibility levels. As far as effective self-defence is concerned, most kicks are used below belt level anyway – so not being able to kick high is not the end of the world.

I’m trying really hard, but I don’t seem to be able to do get some of the
techniques – Is this normal?

Yes! Most people struggle at first but with regular training, a good instructor and perseverance everything will fall in to place.


When will Taekwon-Do start “working” for me?

That depends on what “Working” means. The new student will begin on a massive learning curve. Every lesson will bring new challenges – but with a little time these new techniques will become easier to perform.

Compare your fitness levels now with that of your first lesson – Notice how the exercises seem a bit easier? That is Taekwon-Do starting to “work” for you!

Now consider how you will feel next month or next year…


Click here to book a half price unlimited 30-day membership for only £15 per person! 

© 2019 Universal Martial Arts.

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