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The importance of wearing dobok for Taekwondo students

Wearing a Taekwondo dobok is important that it plays the main part of the growth of every Taekwondo students or trainees. Dobok is considered as a primary necessity in physical training, gradings and tournaments. According to the Encyclopedia of Taekwondo, there have six main reasons to explain the importance of wearing dobok: 1) The wearing of the dobok should instill pride in the student as a practitioner of Taekwondo. 2) It identifies the degree of skill and cultural education in Taekwondo that the individual has attained. 3) The style of the dobok is symbolic of Taekwondo heritage and tradition. 4) Grade and degree changes indicated by belt colour create incentive while simultaneously preserving humility. 5) The dobok is extremely practical and healthy. 6) The official dobok distinguishes orthodox Taekwondo from its imitators. The first reason is the instillation of pride among the student by wearing the dobok. When students wear the dobok, there is a huge sense of honor and pride are grown deeply into heart of every students or trainees, they always feel that they are becoming greater and remind them the tenets of Taekwondo which are the keys to understand and learning Taekwondo. By this way, they can display those tenets when in class, practicing or in a tournament. The second reason is to identifies the degree of skill and cultural education in Taekwondo. As we knew that, there have different colour of belt denotes the rank or grade which similar with other martial arts such as Karate, Judo. Difference in colour of

belt also identifies the degree of skill for a Taekwondo student. Usually, students gain their skill when their rank are upgraded from white belt to coloured belt (geup-holders) until black belt (danholders). Besides that, students also learn the cultural education in Taekwondo which inherit from the culture of Korea, student not only learned the tactics and movements of this martial art, they also learned how to respect to their masters, seniors and even their opponents which was mentioned in Taekwondo Membership's Oath. The third reason is the style of the dobok is the symbolic of Taekwondo heritage and tradition which has been passed on during the times of the early Koreans up to the present. The reason why dobok is white is it preferences the colourlessness of the dobok and according to the Martial Art's artistic philosophy of Dobok in Taekwondo is in "Doeui"(moral principal) of maintaining dobok always clean and improving one's mind and body. In addition, white colour of dobok is the historical tradition of the ancestors from Korea. Another theory is Korea is the white-clad Nation(Baekeuiminjok), so the Taekwondo practitioners in oldest days preferred the colour of white as the symbol of holiness, purity, innocence and nobility. Plus, the white colour is the purity of consciousness and peace. Besides that, Tti(belt) represents the Universe in dobok. So, the Taekwondo dobok and the Tti hold the spiritual meaning. The fourth reason is the grade and degree changes indicated by belt colour create incentive, the belt colour indicates the rank of each student as mentioned above, this makes it easy to know the level of the other students that you may come in contact with especially during sparring tournaments or matches. Besides, the belt colours have symbolic meanings and it help to identify where each student is on his journey through Taekwondo. As the student progresses their training , their earn the next colour belt following the order: white, yellow, green, blue, red and finally black. Other

than that, it also preserving humility of the students when the dobok is worn because the student is reminded of where their stand in the ranks of Taekwondo. Once the students understand their rank or place, their will be humbled, this makes them able to learn better and reflect what a Taekwondo students should be. The fourth reason is the dobok is practical and healthy, this is because the dobok consists of a shirt, pants and belt made of a synthetic material, detron mixed with cotton, which makes it more durable and flexible. Other than that, the sleeves and pant legs are wide, and the joint areas have plenty of space in them so that they have complete freedom of movement. The final reason is the official dobok distinguishes orthodox Taekwondo from its imitators. Usually, current Taekwondo students wear the dobok of World Taekwondo Federation(WTF) style which have v-neck jackets and tailored after the design of the hanbok (Korean tradition clothing). Traditional Taekwondo practitioners wear dobok that are identical or very similar to gi(Judo uniform) with a cross-over jacket front, while International Taekwondo Federation style Taekwondo practitioners wear a newer design with a vertically-closing jacket front. These are the reason why dobok is so important to each Taekwondo student because dobok symbolizes something that more meaningful to the students and it also spiritual representative of Taekwondo plus a kind of respect to these Martial Arts.

What are the implications of wearing dobok in Martial Arts of Taekwondo?

There have few implications of wearing dobok during physical training, grading, and tournaments. The main implications of wearing dobok are movements, ethics, flexibility, and practical. Movements It is an essential for a Taekwondo student able to perform a flexible movements for example, a Taekwondo student able to do front kicks, turning kicks, side kicks or even chopping kick without any tripping on their pant legs while they are wearing dobok. If the students did not wear their dobok during training, they would not able to perform those techniques as their should and their movement would be not fast enough or flexible as they are not wearing dobok. This is because the sleeves and pant legs of dobok are wide and there have plenty of space in them which have complete freedom of movement for Taekwondo students and they also can do stretching easily. Other than that, dobok is made by synthetic fiber which is light so that students can perform a high speed movement and able to jump higher. Ethics As in all Martial Arts, ethics are important. Taekwondo showed a Taekwodo student's ethics through wearing dobok. As mentioned earlier, the white colour of dobok is the symbol of holiness, innocence and nobility, these already showed a greatest ethics among Taekwondo students. Besides, some badges of the dobok for example badge with the quote "DO NOT EVIL" also a kind of ethics that remind the students using Taekwondo in a correct way and gain the balance of controlling the evil and good forces(Yin versus Yang). Taekwondo is not a destructive and aggressive martial arts, Taekwondo is a martial arts that can improve a student

in physically and mentally by training through wearing dobok. It also gives the students more self-confident without result in a false sense of superiority while wearing dobok. Flexibility It is a benefit for a student to wear dobok during practical training because of its flexibility. Besides movements, students can perform different kind of unpredictable attacks to their opponents. This is because the sleeves and pant legs of dobok are wide, so it is hard for a person to predict what is the next step of his/her opponent wanted to perform. With the flexibility of dobok, students can perform their secret or "hidden" attack to his/her opponents during sparring matches. Practical From the Encyclopedia of Taekwondo, dobok is extremely practical and healthy. Like other martial arts which have its own uniform with one reason only, that is practical and healthy. The design of dobok for Taekwondo has its own main purpose, is to help students to practice Taekwondo in a correct manner and prevent injuries. Students can improve well while practicing Taekwondo with the advantages of wearing dobok. References 1. 2.

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