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Cunningham Taekwondo curriculum contains patterns from both sport taekwondo and traditional taekwondo. Other segments of our curriculum come from Jong Park TKD program and Young Choung Tkd program.

There are no barriers to prevent a student of any gender, age, or ethnicity from joining Cunningham Taekwondo. All students will start as a white belt. The DoJang master will decide how quickly each member will progress based on their involvement and ability. Students will develop and improve their balance, flexibility, strength, and dexterity but, it is just as important for students to learn to balance their physical abilities with the mental attributes of taekwondo, such as patience, concentration, respect, and self control.

As students continue to return to the DoJang and practice taekwondo they will begin to see that the mental attributes that taekwondo teaches have just as much of a positive impact on their day-to-day lives as the physical attributes have on their health.
Cunningham Taekwondo offers friendly sparring between members to help students practice their punches, kicks, and blocking abilities, as well as teaches members to respect one another’s abilities. At Cunningham Taekwondo students will learn to love and cooperate with family, to honor their elders and to treat all life with respect.

Student Expectation

Students are expected to be willing to apply their full effort in the DoJang and to always come in ready and willing to learn. Members should not be afraid ask questions when they need clarification. Students are expected to be willing to sacrifice some of their personal time to help their instructors via demonstrations, teaching lessons and helping out around the DoJang as needed. Showing up to lessons and performing well in class or during belt examinations may be necessary but, an instructor can afford to lose a student who does not apply their time to the DoJang.

It is expected that students carry themselves in a respectful manor outside of the DoJang, as their actions will reflect the art of taekwondo and their instructors. Students are allowed to disagree with their instructors but, they are expected to follow the instructions given and to talk to their instructor after the lesson is finished. Students must never disrespect or speak in a disrespectful manor towards their instructors at any time. Students must never betray the trust of the instructors, peers, or those in their lives outside of the DoJang.

Students of higher rank will be setting the example for those bellow them, and it is important that they set a good example of how to act around the instructors, their peers, and even people they meet outside the DoJang. It is also important to be loyal to the DoJang, and to never criticize the instructors, how they teach, or the art of taekwondo itself. When an instructor teaches a technique it is important to practice it and attempt to utilize it where it is necessary.

Self Defense

Taekwondo is a defense based martial arts. It teaches students to be aware of their surroundings, how to handle confrontation in a civil manor, and also what situations to avoid getting involved in. When a fight can’t be avoided, students learn different kicks, punches and, defense patters to protect themselves. As students progress in belt rank, they learn more ways to defend themselves. After a few weeks a student may be able to learn to repel an attacker, but they will not be able to handle themselves in a life threatening situation and there will still be much more to learn. You or a loved one’s safety is never something to gamble.

Tenets of Taekwondo

Every member of Cunningham Taekwondo is expected to follow and respect the five fundamental tenets of Taekwondo;


Students are expected to be considerate and polite to their instructors, members of higher belt rank, and their peers. Students will be taught, and are expected to follow a fair sense of justice, and must not be quick to judge those around them.


Students are expected to follow a just and honorable code of values, to be able to differ “right” from “wrong”, and to feel remorse for wrong comings. Students are expected to respect the DoJang master and to follow instructions from him/her. Outside of the DoJang members are expected to carry themselves in a positive manor and to not take any action that would misrepresent the DoJang.


Members should have the drive to achieve their goals both inside and out of the DoJang. Students should know that nothing ever comes easy and effort will always need to be put in to accomplish any goal and to continue to attempt to reach their goes, regardless of whether they fail or not. There is no victory without sacrifice!


Members are expected to show that they are able to conduct themselves in an appropriate manner, regardless of the situation at hand. This means to maintain a neutral attitude when handling conflict and to have the control to perform exemplary in step sparring without harming their opponent.  

Indomitable Spirit

Members are expected to follow their beliefs, and to not waiver regardless of someone else’s views or the number of oppressors. Members are expected to be unyielding in their beliefs and to always trust in their judgment. Indomitable spirit means that members know not to doubt themselves, regardless of the pressures, and that they will reject anything that they consider to be wrong and to follow their individual path and not what their peers’.

Korean Terminology

These are the terms for the DoJang, the equipment, commands, and forms for both
 Traditional (ITF) and Olympic (WTF) styles of taekwondo.


Taekwondo Gym         :Do Chang
Uniform                      :Dobok
Belt                            :Belt
Colored Belt                :Yu Kub Ja
Black Belt                   :Yu Dan Ja
Master Instructor        :Kwangjang-nim
Instructor                   :Sabeom-nim
Student                      :Jea Ja   

Formal Terms/Commands

Hello                     :Yoboseyo
Thank You             :Kamsa Hamnae Da
You’re Welcome     :Chunmunayo
Attention               :Charyut
Bow                      :Kyung Ye
Ready                   :Joon Bi
Begin                    :Shiyak
Stop                     :Baro
Pattern or Form     :Pomsae

ITF – Traditional Style Forms


There are 24 patterns
WT – (Poomsae) Forms
-Taegeuk Il Jang
-Taegeuk Ee Jang
-Taegeuk Sam Jang
-Taeguek Sah Jang
-Taeguek Oh Jang
-Taeguek Yuk Jang
-Taeguek Chil Jang
-Taeguek Pal Jang

Step Sparring

Before students begin performing free sparring matches they will be introduced to step sparring. There are three types of step sparring that students practice as they progress in belt rank, 3-step, 2-step, and 1-step.

In 3-step sparring students learn to perform patterns that starts with an attack, followed by a defensive movement that will block their partner’s attack and finally the pattern ends with a counter attack, hence the name “3-step sparing”.

To learn how far to stand from an opponent partners measure the distance between each other before beginning, and are expected to keep that distance as they perform their patterns. Students learn to keep a safe distance from an attacker.

In 2-step sparring partners no longer measure the distance between each other but judge the distance by eye. Students practice performing attacks, followed by defensive movements while maintaining the distance between one another.

By the time students are performing 1-step sparring they are prepared to accurately judge the distance between each other and are no longer expected to perform particular patterns, but recognize what attacks and defensive patterns are most effective together while sparring.

                        Leadership Training

Students with their black belt will receive leadership training to prepare them to teach lessons in the DoJang on their own. Because they will be representing the DoJang and their instructors inside and outside of the DoJang it is important that they follow certain conduct. Leaders must be willing to teach and be ready to answer questions from members they are teaching. Leaders should always be looking to help their peers surpass their own abilities and take pride when a student surpasses what they are capable of teaching. Leaders must set a positive example for their peers.

Leaders should also help their peers make positive friendships outside of the DoJang to help them develop both inside and outside of the DoJang. If a leader is having issues with a peer they should speak to them about it in private, in a manner that is respectful and not scolding. If a student asks a question that a leader is unable to answer they should not fabricate an answer, but admit they do not know, and refer the student to an instructor for the answer. Leaders should never put any workload on another student. Most importantly, a leader must always be honest with his/her peers and instructors, and never break the trust of either.