Tradition or Change: White or Colored Uniform

TigerWoman

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Our dojang was pretty strict for a long time, with the traditional white uniform. Only black belts could wear black pants, and black v-neck. Then I re-designed his logo and he changed the uniforms. Blue belts could wear blue, red belts could wear red. Black belts could wear any combination as he did and that set the standard. What would be the reasons to stay with white and what would be the reasons to allow colored uniforms? If your school does, please comment on that.
 
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Gary Crawford

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The change in Dobaks is ok,wear what you like.The only thing that comes to mind is what is allowed in tournaments.If you don't compete,it's not an issue.I don't know which TKD system you belong to,I am only familiar with USTU rules.They require a white Dobak.
 
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TigerWoman

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We are WTF but in our open tournaments, I noticed the last time, every single one of the black belts wore all black doboks. I think I will go back to wearing my white/black v-neck. Tsk, hate to be the same! No, I don't suppose anything but a white uniform is allowed at state. Haven't been there the last two years. Right now, actually, I think a summer uniform would be in order. Did they get this hot in Korea? Too much material, I don't care what you say, that uniform is not cooling in 93 degree/humid temps but it does seem to sop it up some. :uhyeah:
 
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MikeMartial

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After browsing online MA forums since I started TKD, I'm realizing our dojang is very traditional---not a bad thing, IMO.

We only have white doboks, regardless of rank. The exception being the two head instructors, who wear black ones when they teach---if they are joining in the class (and the other head instructor is teaching) they go with white.

I'm not against having colored uniforms, but I think keeping certain tradition in martial arts is important; it's one aspect of the difference between art and sport.
 

MichiganTKD

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We wear all white uniforms up to black belt, then we wear the V-neck. I don't get people who want to wear black or colored uniforms. What are they trying to prove?
In Korea, white symbolizes purity. When we wear white uniforms, it symbolizes the fact that we are not concerned with materialism and flash. I will practice in sweatpants before I'll practice in a black or colored uniform. Physically I could do it, but I would feel unclean.
 

Jade Tigress

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MikeMartial said:
I'm not against having colored uniforms, but I think keeping certain tradition in martial arts is important; it's one aspect of the difference between art and sport.
I agree, I think tradition is important in martial arts. Not that there isn't room for change, change can be for the better but what are the benefits of colored uniforms?

I know little about TKD but I can tell you from an outsiders point of view colored uniforms look a little cheesy. I prefer white or black (depending on tradition for the art) and a colored belt or sash. JMO
 

glad2bhere

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I have never understood the variance in uniforms except as an identity statement for people who want to be different and stand-out in the crowd. I even object to the idea of putting logos on the back and characters down the pant leg. Gueppies wear white; BB wear black. No checks/stripes, herringbones, bright colors, patterns, or fancy materials. I would even limit the patches to one kwan and one organizational patch. Just 100% cotton, kept freshly laundered (and the INCLUDES the belt) and in good repair.

I have recently been considering adopting the Korean han-bok style uniform (after the fashion of the HDGD people) for use as the official uniform for weapons work. I have very strong objections to using the Japanese hakama for Korean weapons work, and though the top needs some work, I think the hanbok makes a decent weapons uniform. FWIW.

Best Wishes,

Bruce
 

terryl965

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We only use white for the students and Us instructors wears white withthe black colar on it
 

MichiganTKD

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What I find amusing is when someone wearing a non-white uniform says that they practice traditional Tae Kwon Do. If you wear a black, white/black, or any color combo you are by definition not traditional.
 
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childan_15

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TigerWoman said:
Our dojang was pretty strict for a long time, with the traditional white uniform. Only black belts could wear black pants, and black v-neck. Then I re-designed his logo and he changed the uniforms. Blue belts could wear blue, red belts could wear red. Black belts could wear any combination as he did and that set the standard. What would be the reasons to stay with white and what would be the reasons to allow colored uniforms? If your school does, please comment on that.
I think traditional uniform
 
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childan_15

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I think traditional uniforms but go with what you like. Im just more of a traditionalist.
 
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David4516

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At our school, everyone, even instructors, wear a plain white uniform. Some patches are OK, however. You may have a US flag patch, or a Korean flag patch...
 

Touch Of Death

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MichiganTKD said:
We wear all white uniforms up to black belt, then we wear the V-neck. I don't get people who want to wear black or colored uniforms. What are they trying to prove?
In Korea, white symbolizes purity. When we wear white uniforms, it symbolizes the fact that we are not concerned with materialism and flash. I will practice in sweatpants before I'll practice in a black or colored uniform. Physically I could do it, but I would feel unclean.
You seem to embrace the martial artist image. What are you trying to prove by adhrering to a white uniform tradition? Who is gonna care if you dawn a black gi once in a while. Why is style bad?
Sean
 
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TigerWoman

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MichiganTKD said:
We wear all white uniforms up to black belt, then we wear the V-neck. I don't get people who want to wear black or colored uniforms. What are they trying to prove?
In Korea, white symbolizes purity. When we wear white uniforms, it symbolizes the fact that we are not concerned with materialism and flash. I will practice in sweatpants before I'll practice in a black or colored uniform. Physically I could do it, but I would feel unclean.

If it was MY school, I think the white dobok does represent TKD the best if we lived in a perfect world. However, talk about unclean. The concept of keeping a uniform clean does not really GET into the neurons of some people. White uniforms tend to turn gray, get sweat stains, last night's pizza and have the mat's grime all over and you get to see that week after week no matter that there WAS a talk with the newest offender about hygiene. Not exactly representing TKD, tradition, or the school very well. Even people who toss that uniform in the weekly or biweekly wash don't seem to keep it sparkling, ie. armpit stains. But red, blue and black still have to be washed too, you just don't have to bleach them to get them clean. And some people only have one uniform. Personally, I have ruined at least four white uniforms, eventually, trying to spot bleach them. And I wash usually within a day. I have used every whitener on the market including oxy stuff. So when I got to black belt, I said hurrah, and got two black uniforms. Would I be so rigid, unflexible to not consider blue and red for WORKOUTS? No, sounds like a good idea. Whole families, can bond together and grow in TKD. If red and blue uniforms help with that, why not? Especially in this imperfect world, where we as parents have to fight bullies, cliques, drugs and alcohol by keeping our kids focused on TKD. If you want a small Korean-thinking clan of rigid thinking people, fine, but I don't think IMO, it will attract many families. Today's TKD should keep its basic traditions, values and curriculum-its best - but grow - become more flexible and open-minded. But hey, if we had stayed in the traditional uniform of the Middle Ages, our military would have some fine chain mail and armor to wear in that desert. :uhyeah:
 

kik

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White uniforms are the tradition and the instructors wear the white with black v neck, That's just the way it is But glad2behere is wrong as far as ...YOU DON'T wash your belt, and when your belt becomes freyed it just means thats because you've used it well. But hey I'm old fashioned.

KIK
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Jion

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kik said:
White uniforms are the tradition and the instructors wear the white with black v neck, That's just the way it is But glad2behere is wrong as far as ...YOU DON'T wash your belt, and when your belt becomes freyed it just means thats because you've used it well. But hey I'm old fashioned.

KIK
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Why don't you wash your belt? You sweat on it, bleed on it; it's possible that there is other people's sweat and blood on it, too. That's just slightly... unhygienic, you know?

Yes, I know the whole bit about "washing out everything you've learned." Come now - if that happens when you wash your belt, let me know. I'd like to study that belt. Tradition for the sake of tradition is meaningless. Tradition for the sake of "my teacher did it this way..." is almost as bad. Tradition for the sake of "my teacher did it this way BECAUSE..." is the way to go.

Now, I washed my first white belt and it turned brown. So, that would be a logical reason NOT to wash your belt. :)

As far as uniforms go... I'd say, wear what you feel comfortable with. Just realize that some people will look at you differently. Okinawan practitioners just went out in there everyday wear; there are some photos of them working out their underwear. The Japanese karate-gi was modeled on Kano's Judo-gi, to help promote the art/sport and make the Japanese more comfortable with it. The Koreans adopted a pull-over top to distinguish their art from the Japanese one. Some taekwondo schools still use the Japanese style cut.

Who is right? For their purposes, they all are. Bruce doesn't like the hakama because it's a Japanese piece of clothing, and he's practicing a Korean art. That's great, for him; another guy might not be able to get a han-bok, so he sticks with the hakama. Still good. The cut and/or color isn't going to make or break an art - though it may cloud people's perceptions of it.

Am I making sense? Or am I overtalking the topic here?
 

Touch Of Death

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You made perfect sense except for the washing your belt part. You don't wash your belt. That's crazy talk. :uhohh:
Sean
 
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David4516

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I don't know about the rest of you guys but I've never washed my belt...
 

MichiganTKD

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In America, our national colors are red, white, and blue. These colors are based on certain principles that define our nation. I didn't make the rules, and I don't have the power to change them. They are traditional. if you decide you are going to wear red, white, and green because you want to be different, you are basically saying "I can change the rules if I want to". Well, no you can't.
To me, Tae Kwon Do is the same way. The traditional uniform color is white, based on what white represents in Korean thought. If you change the color, say red, blue, white/black etc., you are basically saying "I can change the rules if I want to". Well, no you can't. The rules of Tae Kwon Do etiquette and tradition predate anything you think you can change.
You can wear a different color uniform but it wouldn't be traditional Tae Kwon Do and you can't pass it as such.
 
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