How Long Does It Take to Get a Black Belt in Taekwondo?

Taekwondo sometimes gets a bad reputation for handing out black belts too quickly. But for many, kids especially, having a realistically achievable goal helps keep them motivated. So how long does it take to get a black belt in Taekwondo?

As a general rule in Taekwondo, a first degree black belt takes 3 to 5 years. However, there are some Taekwondo schools that require students to practice for 4 to 5 years before earning a black belt.

To get a black belt in Taekwondo, the student must first pass an exam based on the curriculum of the dojo. Most students usually take the test multiple times before they pass it. Does this mean that getting a black belt in Taekwondo is hard?

Keep reading to the end of this article to find out.

Is a black belt in Taekwondo hard to get?

Getting a black belt in Taekwondo is not completely hard to get.

It depends on several factors like the average time you spend practicing daily, the experience of the instruction or quality of the Taekwondo school, the instructors’ approach or style, and your determination and willingness to put in the hard work.

As a Taekwondo student, your primary goal is to achieve a black belt, which may appear to be a lofty and challenging task at first. Still, in comparison to other martial arts, Taekwondo has one of the shortest average times to achieve a black belt.

A black belt can be obtained in 3 years of consistent and disciplined training. To be granted a black belt, the International Taekwondo Association needs a minimum of 40 months of training, 3 days a week.

Taekwondo is a Korean martial art that is kick-based.

A demonstration of numerous techniques in front of a panel of judges is part of the black belt exam. You must also spar for two minutes, compose a three-page essay, and smash three boards.

The Taekwondo black belt level may be hard to get for some martial artists due to the flexibility required for advanced level kicks.

When a person is promoted to a black belt, they must then work their way up the black belt ladder. The person begins as a first-degree black belt (1 stripe) and works their way up to a tenth-degree black belt.

One of the most prominent characteristics of Taekwondo is the mixture of amazing kicks.

But, in Taekwondo, can you punch? Is it allowed? In a recent article, I answered these questions. But I also cover what the restrictions there are on strikes of any kind.

Just click that link to read it on my site.

Can you become a black belt in a year in Taekwondo?

You cannot become a black belt in Taekwondo in a year. It takes years of training and dedication. The same goes for other forms of martial arts.

You should be careful of any Taekwondo dojo that promises you a black belt in a year.

They are popularly known as McDojos, and they are only after your money. This type of school gives out black belts easily when their students can’t even throw a proper kick.

It is a known fact that the road to attaining a black belt involves many training sessions.

Years of training will be spent perfecting physical techniques while also building inner attributes like bravery, attention, and discipline. The student’s first stage is to go beyond the white belt level to other higher color belts.

A white belt indicates the openness that a learner must have to embrace the master’s teachings.

After demonstrating confidence and trust in the teacher, the pupil advances to a yellow belt, representing a seed. Yellow belt practitioners continue to improve their skills. A brown belt holder is developing and growing just like a tree.

The learner holding a blue belt, on the other hand, demonstrates maturity.

The blue belt student develops mental and physical strength and graduates to other higher ranks. Earning a black belt requires going through the ranks of multiple belt colors. Having a black stripe on your belt means you are ready to test for the next rank.

One of the most well-known martial arts is Taekwondo. However, a belt system is not used in all combat arts. And those who do frequently employ a distinct method from that of others.

So, what is the Taekwondo belt ranking system?

Find out in a recent article I wrote. I cover every belt in all the different Taekwondo systems. But I also get into how long it takes to go from one belt to the next. And I cover whether attending more classes a week speeds that up or not.

Just click that link to read it on my site.

Is there a belt above black in Taekwondo?

Yes, there are other black belt ranks above a black belt in Taekwondo.

Getting a first degree black belt may be the endpoint for some senior students, while some may have a long-term goal to get to the highest level of the black belt.

True, reaching black belt status indicates that you have achieved an expert level, but there is still much more. Here are the other black belt levels from the first dan to the 9th dan:

1st Dan (1st Degree): This is the first stage. It usually takes 3 to 5 years to get to this level.

2nd Dan (2nd Degree): It will take another two years before you can reach the second degree. Both second and third-degree levels mean that you can serve as an assistant instructor.

3rd Dan (3rd Degree): Another couple of years after the second degree will take you to the 3rd Dan level.

4th Dan (4th Degree): 3 to 4 years after achieving 3rd-degree level

5th Dan (5th Degree): It can take up to 5 or 6 years to earn

6th Dan (6th Degree): It can take 6 to 7 years

7th Dan (7th Degree): 7 to 8 years of practice, and you can be considered a Master Instructor.

8th Dan (8th Degree): This is where the Grandmaster status starts.

9th Dan (9th Degree): This is the ultimate level.

It should be noted that a 10th Degree black belt is very difficult to obtain and is only an honorary title given to people in Taekwondo who have influenced the sport or accomplished great things in Taekwondo.

Keiko Fukuda, 98, became the first woman in history to earn a 10th-degree black belt in Taekwondo in 2011.

What are the Taekwondo black belt age requirements?

To get a black belt in Taekwondo, the student must be 16 years old. Younger students under the age of 16 are considered a Poome belt (Jr. black belt). After becoming 16 years old, one might test for second Poome or higher.

Black Belt is the highest rank in the martial arts.

Junior Black Belts must satisfy all of the basic standards of a black belt. However, they will not be given the rank title of Sensei. Until the age and maturity criteria are satisfied, their rank certificate will be designated as “Juunia Shodan,” or Junior 1st Degree.

If you want to know more about the Taekwondo black belt requirements, I explained everything in detail in a recent article. It includes what you need to do and the skills you must have acquired. But I also point out the different things that might cause you to fail your test!

Just click that link to read it on my site.

Which black belt takes the longest?

Out of the over 170 martial arts available, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu takes the longest to get a black belt. Some Karate schools also take a long time to give out a black belt.

The belt system in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is not usually associated with competence or even understanding of the discipline. Getting a promotion might vary depending on the coach and the student.

No matter how well-rounded you become, it might sometimes just come down to time spent on the mats.

Some martial arts instructors prioritize competition achievement more than the commitment to the sport. When coaches are determining whether or not to promote a student, competitive performance might be the decisive factor.

According to the school and instructor, a black belt in BJJ ultimately takes different amounts of time, but it is safe to assume that a black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu will take the most time.

Taekwondo has a grading system for belts. But how often do belt tests occur?

I revealed the answer in a recent article, but I also get into how to make them happen faster and what might cause you to fail a belt test.

Click on that link to take you straight to the article on my site.

Getting My Taekwondo Black Belt!


In conclusion, the average time to get a black belt in Taekwondo is 3 to 5 years. And it is not possible to get a black belt within a year.

You also know that the highest rank in Taekwondo is not the first-degree black belt.

There are other belt levels after the first black belt. Moving up the next belt is still determined by your physical ability to complete the essential criteria for that rank, such as forms, sparring, and breaks.

Taekwondo requires patience. Staying dedicated is a great way to achieve a black belt in Taekwondo faster.

Photo which requires attribution:

bowing by Paul is licensed under CC2.0 and was cropped, edited, and had a text and graphic overlay added.

Image by Clker-Free-Vector-Images from Pixabay

Jeff Campbell

Jeff Campbell was Academy Director for a large martial arts school for over 7 years, and has trained extensively in a variety of martial arts including Brazilian Jiujitsu, different styles of Karate, the Russian Martial Art of Systema, Aikido, and much more.

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