Tests and Promotions

The evaluation of gup students (white to 3rd degree red belt) during testing gives the Instructor an understanding of the students’ true progress and development.  Areas where more training is needed are observed and noted by the students’ master. Gup tests are administered every 2 – 3 months, and can last 2 – 3 hours depending on the number of testing candidates.  Students must demonstrate good Technique in their performance, and show Discipline and Respect throughout the entire test. Testing areas for gups include:

  • Gi Cho (basics) – consists of various kicks, strikes and blocks in combination
  • Il Soo Sik (one-step sparring) – consists of eighteen defend and counter partner drills
  • Ho Sin Sool (self-defense) – consists of various break away defenses, wrist and joint locks, sweeps and take-downs
  • Hyung (forms) – includes the three basic forms, the five Pyong Ahn forms, Bassai, the first three Chil Sung forms, and Nai Han Ji Cho Dan
  • Kyok Pa (board breaking) – various techniques are used in board breaking to demonstrate speed (Wan Gup), power (Him Cho Chung), focus (Chung Shin Tong Il), and courage (Yong Gi)
  • In Neh (endurance) – consists of a series of speed punches, rapid kicks and various calisthenics performed in rapid succession for 30 seconds to one minute
Testing of gup students is conducted by a masters’ panel (Shim Sa Ko Nim) in the studio. Dan (1st to 3rd degree black belt) tests are conducted at the Region 9 Dan Shim Sa with masters and studio owners from California, Nevada and Hawaii in attendance. The results of the tests are submitted to the National Headquarters of the U.S. Soo Bahk Do Moo Duk Kwan Federation in Springfield, New Jersey, where they are evaluated. Official certificates of promotion are issued to studio owners and distributed to students in a traditional ceremony.