University of Leicester Taekwon-Do Club



The uniform worn to practice Taekwon-Do is called the Dobok, literally meaning ‘clothes of the way’, and consists of a shirt (Sang-i), trousers (Ha-i), and belt (Ti). The current type of dobok is a development of the traditional type of uniform as still worn by practitioners of e.g. Karate and Judo. The dobok is considered a essential part of the art of Taekwon-Do, and students not wearing the dobok for training are considered to be dressed incorrectly.

For reasons of both presentation and hygiene, doboks should be kept clean (preferably washed after every training session) and neatly folded (or even better, ironed) to avoid creases.

The reasons given in the Encyclopaedia of Taekwon-Do for wearing the dobok are as follows:

The specific uniform worn to practice martial arts was first introduced as the judogi created by Kano Jigoro, founder of Judo, in 1907, and based on traditional Japanese garments. This was soon picked up by other arts such as Karate, which then influenced the developoment of Korean martial arts during the Japanese occupation.

Initially, the Taekwon-Do uniform used the same jacket and trousers as Karate; a heavy weight cotton weave, with shorter sleeves and trouser legs. As Taekwon-Do developed its own distinct identity, the dobok came to be made of lighter material and the sleeves and legs lengthened.

Whereas the original dobok jackets were open at the front, and were kept closed by folding the left side over the right and fastening with the belt, modern doboks of this type are usually either sewn closed at the front, or sometimes fastened by a zip or velcro. Others, such as the WTF and newer style of TAGB doboks, have abandoned the cross-over style entirely, and gone for a V-neck collar based on the traditional Korean hanbok.