First Taekwondo Perth Western Australia Traditional Standards - Progressive Attitude - Comprehensive Philosophy

What is First Tae Kwon Do?
First Tae Kwon Do is a traditional martial art school. We teach the Korean martial art of Tae Kwon Do for both practical self-defence purposes and the personal development of our members (in terms of physical conditioning, mental discipline, and other qualities). The head of First Tae Kwon Do is Master Vernon Low. He was the first Tae Kwon Do instructor in Australia when he began teaching in Adelaide in the 1960s, hence the school's name. Master Low expanded his school to Western Australia and now has many branches here in the Perth (Western Australia) metro area along with his original South Australia branches.

What are the differences between being Tae Kwon Do, Karate, and Kung Fu?
Most Asian martial arts trace their history back to China, but in essence, Tae Kwon Do formally originated in Korea, Karate in Japan (via Okinawa), and Kung Fu in China. Each art shares some common elements with the others, but each one developed using different principles to maximise its effectiveness. In Tae Kwon Do, we generally use a greater percentage of leg techniques to give an increased reach advantage and to keep opponents outside their preferred striking range. Karate and Kung Fu practitioners generally use a greater percentage of hand and arm techniques, compared to Tae Kwon Do, but this is not to say that we neglect those techniques!

Is martial art training dangerous?
It is a common misconception that martial art training is dangerous, with a relatively high risk of injury. In First Tae Kwon Do, all members learn about safety and respect in training from Day 1. While there is always some risk of physical injury, most members will encounter no injuries or only very minor injuries. Typically, the types of injuries seen in school sports (even non-contact sports such as basketball or netball) are more severe than what we encounter in our traditional martial art training.

Does martial art training encourage violence?
Another common misconception is that martial art training encourages violence. In our experience, the reverse is generally true. In First Tae Kwon Do, the moral use of martial art skills is foundational to our training. All members are taught to respect each other as individual human beings; after only a few months' training, all should have developed a basic understanding that getting into a physical conflict is probably the least desirable self-defence option. That said, it is up to each individual to decide how he/she will approach martial art training and conduct him/herself through life.

Is First Tae Kwon Do good for health and fitness?
First Tae Kwon Do has many benefits, of which better health and fitness are just a couple. Apart from strength, endurance, balance, coordination, and flexibility, First Tae Kwon Do is also excellent for building up mental toughness and calmness, and for stress relief. Bear in mind that outcomes will depend on how much effort you put into training, and that any exercise should be undertaken intelligently and safely. First Tae Kwon Do involves all the major muscle groups, both in individual exercises and in paired exercises (where you and a training partner provide physical resistance to each other). A lot of our training focuses on mobility (avoiding an attack) and kicking, which both involve moving your entire body weight, and will help ensure that you will burn off any excess fat quickly. If you put in a reasonable effort, you should have excellent all-round cardiovascular workout.

How fit do I have to be to start training?
Many beginners do express concerns about how fit they should be before starting their First Tae Kwon Do training. You will need to have a basic level of fitness so that you can participate in class to a reasonable degree, but we recognise and support each individual at whatever their current level of fitness. We do not put pressure on beginners to 'keep up' in terms of physical fitness; it is no problem at all to do your best, and then 'step out' for the remainder of an exercise. It is important to remember that most First Tae Kwon Do members, including instructors, are just ordinary people who were not necessarily very fit when they started their own journey in First Tae Kwon Do!

At what age can my child start First Tae Kwon Do training?
All prospective members need to have at least a basic understanding of moral concepts and of the consequences of their actions. They also need to be able to understand and follow instructions, and be able to maintain reasonable focus over an hour-long class, otherwise they will not be able to benefit from the training. Starting a child too early will be a frustrating exercise for them, and could well turn them off training, which would see them miss out on the many long term benefits. In general, most children should be ready to begin First Tae Kwon Do training from the age of six years. For younger children, we recommend introductory gymnastics training as an excellent foundation on which to build First Tae Kwon Do training.

When would I be too old to start training?
As we age, our bodies obviously become more limited in a physical sense, but your attitude will probably be a much better indicator of whether you are 'too old' to start training. While all members work to improve on their physical conditioning, we recognise and support each member's current capabilities, regardless of age. In general, people in their 50s are probably nearing the maximum starting age that we would recommend, but we do have older First Tae Kwon Do students, including Black Belts into their 60s and beyond, who train regularly.

How much does training cost?
We do not have contracts or direct debit arrangements; you simply pay the fees to your Branch Instructor at the beginning of each calendar month. You do not pay any fees for months in which you do not train. Our monthly training fees are probably the lowest on average for any mainstream martial art school in Australia. The Branch Instructors are all senior students; most have been continuously training in Tae Kwon Do for 15 to 35 years, and we all have their own full-time professions outside First Tae Kwon Do. We teach because we love bringing our martial art to the community, and not to make an income. Please call us on 9275 7878 or e-mail us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to find out about our fees.

What style of Tae Kwon Do does First Tae Kwon Do teach?
We teach the original style of Tae Kwon Do that some refer to as the “Chang-Hon” style. Our style is what the International Taekwon-Do Federation style developed from and the World Taekwondo Federation style went the sporting way from. All current Tae Kwon Do styles worldwide ultimately came from the same style that we continue to train and persevere with in First Tae Kwon Do.

What are the ranks?
As with many other Asian martial arts, First Tae Kwon Do ranks are marked by coloured belts. The lighter colours denote more junior ranks, while the darker colours denote more senior ranks. Beginners start with a white belt, and move to white belt with yellow tip (stripe) after passing their first grading examination. The next belt colour is yellow, followed by green, blue, brown, and then black. In First Tae Kwon Do, black belt ranks mark advanced training ranks.

How long does it take to become a Black Belt?
This is one of the most frequently asked questions, but there is no set answer, as this depends very much on each individual's ability and dedication. Master Low encourages all new beginners to aspire to achieve the black belt ranks, but obviously this will take a lot of work, and entering the black belt ranks denotes the beginning of advanced training. (Many people seem to hold the misconception that achieving a black belt means that they have finished training!) Generally, around four years of regular training (twice per week as a junior belt/kup, and three classes per week as a senior belt/kup) should see a student be ready to apply for his/her black belt grading under Master Low. Achieving black belt level involves more than just physical kicking and punching. For those who have the determination and spirit, achieving black belt status marks the commencement of learning the “Art”.

Can I transfer my rank grade) from another Tae Kwon Do school or another martial art? (Kup or Dan)
No, but Master Low assesses every student on his quarterly grading visits to Western Australia, and any students who have the appropiate attitude and skills may be upgraded accordingly. If you are applying for membership in First Tae Kwon Do, we assume that your values and goals are similar to ours, so we will be aiming to help you build on the quality of your skills (e.g., practical usefulness) rather than being too concerned about moving through the ranks as quickly as possible.

Do you train in weapons?
No. In Australia, members of the public cannot legally carry weapons; but we do carry around our bodies and minds with us 24 hours a day, so those are the tools of self-defence we train to protect ourselves with. We do train against practice weapons (e.g., rubber knives), and also practise disarming tactics, in class.

Can I compete in tournaments?
No. First Tae Kwon Do is a traditional martial art, not a martial sport. We train to perfect technique for real self-defence applications, not for point-scoring or competitions. We believe that, as opposed to the sports approach, the traditional art approach builds physically stronger and more mentally confident practitioners. Of course, any martial art or martial sport style that is taught properly and practised diligently will have benefits, and we certainly do not want to detract from what any serious martial artist might be seeking to accomplish. It is common sense that you should choose a style or school that matches what you are trying to achieve.

Can I cross-train in other martial arts?
No. First Tae Kwon Do is a traditional martial art, so all members are expected to show the traditional loyalty to a single master instructor; in this case, Master Low, as the head of First Tae Kwon Do. In principle, there are no problems with a member of stopping training in First Tae Kwon Do and learning another martial art, and then later returning to First Tae Kwon Do if they wish. Bear in mind that our general philosophy is that it is better to learn one art, and learn it extremely well, than to learn several arts to a lower level. Our art focuses on mobility, avoiding and counter-attacking as needed; this maximises our chances of survival against a bigger assailant or multiple assailants. Also note that advanced training in First Tae Kwon Do does incorporate skills (such as grappling and throwing) that other martial arts focus more on. As mentioned above, you should choose a style or school that matches what you are trying to achieve.

How do I start First Tae Kwon Do training, do I need to book in?
No all you need to do is call (08 9275 7878) or email ( This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) or get to one of our 20 conveniently located Perth metro classes 15 minutes early to speak to the branch Instructor. Your trial lesson is free and we trust you will enjoy the class and wish to return.

Please call or email First Tae Kwon Do Perth Western Australia on 9275 7878 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for class venue and class times for any of our 20 centres located in the Perth suburbs of: Armadale, Beechboro, Bassendean, Bayswater, Ballajura, Bedford, Brentwood, Canning Vale, Como, Churchlands, Duncraig, Greenmount, Mt Hawthorn, Nedlands, Noranda, Ocean Reef, Thornlie, Woodvale, Yangebup & Yokine.