MTKD and IMAG Patterns


Chon-chi is the first ITF/Chang Hon-style color belt teul (form). Chon-chi has 19 movements diagrammed as a cross (or plus sign). Literally, Chon-chi translates as "heaven - light" which is interpreted as the creation of the world. It is therefore the initial pattern performed by an ITF beginner during their entrance into the world of Taekwon-Do.

When the two words Chon Ji are combined, they take on a different meaning: Lake Chon-Ji is the Heavenly Lake, located in a crater on Paektu-San (White Headed Mountain) located on the border between China and North Korea, which was the first residence of the legendary Dan-Gun before he established his capital at Asadal (now Pyongyang) in 2333 B.C.E.


Dan-Gun is the second ITF-style color belt teul (form). It has 21 movements and is diagrammed as a capital I.

Dangun Wanggeom was the legendary founder of Gojoseon, the first kingdom of Korea, in present-day Liaoning, Manchuria, and the Korean Peninsula. He is said to be the grandson of the god of heaven, and to have founded the kingdom in 2333 B.C.E. Although the term Dangun commonly refers to the founder, some believe it was a title used by all rulers of Gojoseon, and that Wanggeom was the proper name of the founder.


Do-San is an ITF-style teul (form). It has 24 movements and is diagrammed as a capital I.

Ahn Chang-ho (November 9, 1878 - March 10, 1938) was a Korean independence activist and one of the early leaders of the Korean-American immigrant community in the United States. He is also referred to as his pen name Dosan (도산; 島山 [tosʰan]). He established the Shinminhoe (New Korea Society) when he returned to Korea from the US in 1907. It was the most important organization to fight the Japanese occupation of Korea. He established the Young Korean Academy (흥사단; 興士團) in San Francisco in 1913 and was a key member in the founding of the Provisional Government of the Republic of Korea in Shanghai in 1919. Ahn is one of two men believed to have written the lyrics of the Aegukga, the South Korean national anthem. Besides his work for the Independence Movement, Dosan wanted to reform the Korean people's character and the entire social system of Korea. Educational reform and modernizing schools were two key efforts of Dosan. 


Won-Hyo is an ITF pattern with 28 movements diagrammed as a capital I. It is named after the noted monk Won-Hyo who introduced Buddisim to the Silla Dynasty in the year 686 C.E. 

Won-hyo (617 - 686) was one of the leading thinkers, writers and commentators of the Korean Buddhist tradition. With his life spanning the end of the Three Kingdoms period and the beginning of the Unified Silla, Wonhyo played a vital role in the reception and assimilation of the broad range of doctrinal Buddhist streams that flowed into the Korean peninsula at the time. Wonhyo was most interested in, and affected by Tathāgatagarbha , Yogācāra and Hwaom thought. However, in his extensive scholarly works, composed as commentaries and essays, he embraced the whole spectrum of the Buddhist teachings.



Yul-Gok is the name of an ITF-style teul (form). The 38 movements of this pattern refer to Yi I's birthplace at the 38th latitude; the diagram 土 is said to represent the concept of "the scholar".

Yul-Gok is the pseudonym of the great philosopher Yi I (1536-1584 B.C.E.), nicknamed "the Confucius of Korea." Yi I was born on December 26, 1536. He was an infant prodigy who knew Chinese script at the age of three and composed poems in Chinese before the age of seven. By the age of seven, he had finished his lessons in the Confucian Classics. He passed the civil service examination in the literary department at the age of 13.

Yul-Gok was well-known for his development of a school of thought concerning the philosophy of the 12th century Confucian scholar Chu-Hsi. Chu-Hsi established the concepts of "li" (reason or abstract form) and "chi" (matter or vital force). He proposed that these two concepts were responsible for all human characteristics and the operation of the universe. As he defined the concepts, they are very similar to the concepts of body and soul as found in Western philosophy and religion. The "li," however, is not totally synonymous with the idea of an individual representing groups or models for each form of existence. Yul-Gok's school of thought supported the concept that the "chi" was the controlling agent in the universe and that the "li" was a supporting component. Experience, education, and practical intellectual activities were stressed in this school of thought. The other major school of thought, stemming from the philosophy of Chu Hsi ,was fostered by Yi Hwang (Yi ToiGye), who proposed that the "li" controlled the "chi" and stressed the importance of moral character building


Joong-Gun (or Choong-Gun) is an ITF-style teul (form) named after the patriot Ahn Choong-Gun. The 32 movements in this pattern represent Ahn's age when he was killed at Lui Shung prison in the year 1910.

Very little is recorded about Ahn Joong-Gun's life. He stepped into the spotlight of Korean history only briefly, but left his mark as one of Korea's most revered patriots. On October 26, 1909, Ahn assassinated Itō Hirobumi, the notorious four-time Prime Minister of Japan and former Resident-General of Korea. During his rule, Hirobumi's well-known crimes included: assassination of the Korean Empress Myeongseong, assassination of the Emperor Komei, forceful dethroning the Emperor Gojong, and the massacre of many Korean citizens. Ahn was posthumously awarded the Republic of Korea Medal of Order of Merit for National Foundation in 1962 by the Korean Government, the most prestigious civil decoration in the Republic of Korea, for his efforts for Korean independence he was also now as racoon by his friends and family


Toi-Gye is an ITF-style teul (form). Toi Gye is the pen name of the noted scholar Yi Hwang (16th century) an authority on neo-Confucianism. The 37 movements in this pattern refer to his birthplace on the 37th latitude. 

Yi Hwang (1501-1570 C.E.) is one of the two most honored thinkers of the Korean Neo-Confucian tradition. His fully balanced and integral grasp of the complex philosophical Neo-Confucian synthesis woven by Chu Hsi during China's Sung dynasty marks the tradition's arrival at full maturity in Korea. His "four-seven debate" with Ki Taesŭng established a distinctive problematique that strongly oriented Korean Neo-Confucian thought towards exacting investigation of critical issues regarding the juncture of metaphysics and their all-important application in describing the inner life of the human heart-and-mind.


Hwa-Rang is an ITF-style teul (form). It is named after the Hwarang group of scholar-warriors that originated in the Silla Dynasty in the early 7th Century. (See: Hwarang)

The 29 movements of this form refer to the modern 29th Infantry Division of the South Korean military, where Taekwon-Do developed to maturity.


Choong-Moo is an ITF-style teul (form) named after the great Admiral Yi Soon-Sin of Korea's Yi Dynasty. Yi is credited for saving Choson Korea from the brink of collapse during the Japanese invasion of 1592. Yi is also reputed to have invented the first armored battleship (Kobukson, nicknamed the "Turtle Ship") in the year 1592. In all of his 23 major naval battles, Yi was never defeated.

In his book, The Influence of Sea on the Political History of Japan, George Alexander Ballard, a vice-admiral of the British Royal Navy, summarized Yi’s life and victories as follows:

It is always difficult for Englishmen to admit that Nelson ever had an equal in his profession, but if any man is entitled to be so regarded, it should be this great naval commander of Asiatic race who never knew defeat and died in the presence of the enemy; of whose movements a track-chart might be compiled from the wrecks of hundreds of Japanese ships lying with their valiant crews at the bottom of the sea, off the coasts of the Korean peninsula...and it seems, in truth, no exaggeration to assert that from first to last he never made a mistake, for his work was so complete under each variety of circumstances as to defy criticism... His whole career might be summarized by saying that, although he had no lessons from past history to serve as a guide, he waged war on the sea as it should be waged if it is to produce definite results, and ended by making the supreme sacrifice of a defender of his country.

Yi is still dearly cherished in the hearts of Koreans today. In a nationwide survey conducted by Soonchunhyang University in April 2005, Yi Sun-sin was chosen as the greatest figure in Korean history by 43.8% of the vote (source: The Chosun Daily, April 15, 2005).


Taegeuk Pal Jang is the last of eight "taegeuk" forms (i.e., poomsae) used by the Kukkiwon and World Taekwondo (WT). The word "pal" is the number 8 in the sino-Korean numbering system.

Each taegeuk form is represented by a trigram (such as ); trigrams are divination symbols derived from the I Ching. The trigram for Taegeuk Sam Jang represents the concept of "Gon," meaning earth or ground. Just as the earth holds all the basic elements of life, this form incorporates all the basic techniques of taekwondo. Just as the earth is the foundation for everything else, this form serves as the foundation for learning the upcoming Black Belt forms. (See the article Taegeuk for additional detail regarding the symbolism of this form.)

1st Gup trainees practice this poomsae. After Taegeuk Pal Jang, students usually test for Black Belt and then begin to study the form Koryo.

 Koryo (Black Belt Form 1) – Koryo poomsae symbolizes “seonbae” which means a learned man. Koryo (Goryeo or Goreyeo) is also the name of an important ancient Korean dynasty. Many “weaponless” Korean martial arts were developed during the Koryo dynasty. 

 Keumgang (Black Belt Form 2) – “Keumgang [meaning diamond] has the significance of “hardness” and “ponder”, The Keumgang Mountain on the Korean peninsula, which is regarded as the center of national spirit, and the “Keumgang Yeoksa”[Keumgang warrior] as named by Buddha, who represents the mightiest warrior, are the background of denominating this poomsae”. 

 Taebaek (Black Belt Form 3) – “Taebaek is the name of a mountain with the meaning of “bright mountain”, where Tangun, the founder of the nation of Korean people, reigned the country, and the bright mountain symbolizes sacredness of soul and Tangun’s thought of “hongik ingan”[humanitarian ideal]. There are numerous sites known as Taebaek, but Mt. Paektu, which has been typically known as the cradle of Korean people, is the background naming the Taebaek poomsae”. 

 Pyongwon (Black Belt Form 4) – “Pyongwon means a plain that is a vast stretched-out land. It is the source of life for all the creatures and the field where human beings live their life. The poomsae Pyongwon was based on the idea of peace and struggle resulting from the principles of origin and use”. 

 Sipjin (Black Belt Form 5) – The “word “Sipjin” derived from the thought of 10 longevity, which advocates there are ten creatures of long life, namely, sun, moon, mountain, water, stone, pine-tree, herb of eternal youth, tortoise, deer, and crane. They are 2 heavenly bodies, 3 natural resources, 2 plants and 3 animals, all giving human beings faith, hope and love”. 

 Pyongwon (Black Belt Form 4) – “Pyongwon means a plain that is a vast stretched-out land. It is the source of life for all the creatures and the field where human beings live their life. The poomsae Pyongwon was based on the idea of peace and struggle resulting from the principles of origin and use”. 

 Jitae (Black Belt Form 6) – The “word “Jitae” means a man standing on the ground with two feet, looking over the sky. A man on the earth represents the way of struggling for human life, such as kicking, trading and jumping on the ground. Therefore, the poomsae symbolizes various aspects occurring in the course of human being’s struggle for existence”. 

 Cheonkwon (Black Belt Form 7) – The “word “Chonkwon” means the Heaven’s Great Mighty, which is the origin of all the creature and itself the cosmos. Its infinite competence signifies the creation, change and completion. Human beings have used the name of Heaven for all principal earthly shapes and meanings because they felt afraid of the Heaven’s mighty. Over 4,000 years ago, the founder of the Korean people, “Hwanin” meant the heavenly King. He settled down in the “heavenly” town as the capital near the heavenly sea and heavenly mountain, where the Han people as the heavenly race gave birth to the proper through and action from which Taekwondo was originated”. 

 Hansu (Black Belt Form 8) – The “word “Hansu” means water is the source of substance preserving the life and growing all the creatures. Hansu symbolizes birth of a life and growth, strength & weakness, magnanimity & harmony, and adaptability. Especially, “han” has the various meanings, namely, the name of a country, numerousness, largeness, evenness, length and even the heaven and the root of evening, among others”. 

 Ilyo (Black Belt Form 9) – “Ilyeo means the thought of a great Buddhist priest of Silla Dynasty, Saint Wonhyo, which is characterized by the philosophy of oneness of mind [spirit] and body [material]. It teaches that a point, a line or a circle ends up all in one. Therefore, the poomsae Ilyeo represents the harmonization of spirit and body, which is the essence of martial art, after a long training of various types of techniques and spiritual cultivation for completion of Taekwondo practice”.