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Poomsae Uniform Guide

 

For seasoned Poomsae competitors, this may be common knowledge but for those new to the competition scene, picking the right uniform, or "dobok" may be confusing. In Poomsae, different uniform colors are used to differentiate between different gender and age divisions.

Youth and Cadet Dobok

JC Youth / Cadet Poomsae Uniform   JC Youth / Cadet Poomsae Uniform

For the Youth (9-10 years old), and Cadet (11-14 years old) divisions at National and International tournaments, athletes are expected to wear the "Poom" uniform which consists of the uniform top, pants, and Poom belt. The Poom dobok is a white top with a red and black collar- this style of uniform is worn by both male and female athletes. The Poom belt is a red and black stripe belt which matches the collar of the uniform. The only difference between the male and female uniforms lies within the pants- male athletes are expected to wear blue pants and female athletes are expected to wear red pants; both of a specific shade.

Junior and Senior Dobok

For the Junior (15-17 years old), Senior/Under 30 (18-30 years old), Under 40, and Under 50 divisions, athletes are expected to wear the "Dan" uniform, which consists of a uniform top, pants, and any regular black belt. The Dan dobok is a white top with a black collar that matches the black belt and is worn by both male and female athletes. Female athletes in these divisions must wear Dan pants- they are assigned a specific dull blue color that is distinct from the Poom pant color. Male athletes in these divisions must wear black Dan pants. Once again, the only distinguishing feature between the male and female Dan uniform is the color of the pants.

Master Dobok

JC High Dan Poomsae UniformAthletes aged 50 and above have the most distinct and eye-catching uniform- it is often referred to as the "bumblebee" uniform. This set consists of the "Masters" uniform top, pants, and black belt. No matter the gender, athletes in this age group must wear a yellow/gold top with a black collar, as well as black uniform pants.

Check the Guide to the First Ever Dobok 

Attention to Details

Although the color and style of uniform may not seem like a priority for some people, it is looked upon very heavily in higher level competition. At the 2014 World Taekwondo Poomsae Championships, I was not aware of uniform requirements and I showed up to inspection wearing a Poom uniform and a regular black belt. I was told right away that I needed to wear a belt that matched the collar of my uniform and that if I could not reach their requirements, I would be disqualified.

A similar incident occurred at the 2016 World Taekwondo Poomsae Championships when a Junior female athlete arrived on stage wearing a supposed "Dan" uniform, but with pants of a different shade. She was sent back to inspection with a time limit to find a new uniform, and also a chance of disqualification. All uniforms worn at these levels must be from World Taekwondo Federation approved brands (such as JCalicu).

I hope that my past mistakes and experiences can help to shed light on these requirements and dispell any confusion that newer competitors may have. Picking the right uniform is very important in ensuring that an athlete is prepared for competition and to make sure that no athlete gets disqualified for an easily avoidable mistake. AKROSS Canada is my favorite place to go for my uniform needs - they are extremely helpful and absolutely willing to answer any questions you may have! Happy uniform hunting, fellow athletes!

Justina Yu