The Board approved Background Check Policy 2.1 applies to members over the age of 18 years.

Soo Bahk Do Federation   01/06/2019  

Be the first person to like this faq.

Certified School Owners may request a special discount code to provide to staff members or volunteers at the school.

School staff or volunteers can then use the discount code to purchase the Background Check And Continuing Education Subscription on the Soo Bahk Do Institute for $1 and then apply for the Background Check and take the child safety training.

Soo Bahk Do Federation   01/06/2019  

Be the first person to like this faq.

The first thing you may want to do is reactivate your Federation membership so that you can get member pricing and access to all membership benefits.

You can do that here:

  • If you plan to train at a school, then select an Individual Membership.
  • If you will not be in a school then choose the Alumni Membership.

Once your membership is activated, then you qualify for member pricing on Federation products and you also you qualify for a 40% discount on all subscriptions on the Soo Bahk Do Institute.

The Soo Bahk Do Institute is a great way to brush up, refresh your memory on techniques and "knock the rust off" at your own pace. There ore over 1000 videos available.

If you plan to train in a school, then you can locate one near you here:

To order patches, Dan Belts, books, etc.  you can cal (888) SOO-BAHK or  email headquarters@soobahkdo.com

Once you have activated a membership you will get lower member pricing and we will provide you the discount code you need to use to get 40% off the Institute subscriptions.

We look forward to getting you going again!

Soo Bahk Do Biz   08/26/2016  

Be the first person to like this faq.


Some Federation schools still order Federation patches with blue trim and thus need rockers with blue trim while others order World Moo Suk Kwan patches with black trim and thus need rockers with black trim.

Headquarters has available Jo Kyo, Kyo Sa and Sa Bom rocker tabs with blue and black trim. The person ordering rocker tabs can specify their preferred color.

The online mall also offers rocekt tabs with both colors of trim.  www.moodukkwanmall.com

Soo Bahk Do Biz   04/20/2016  

Be the first person to like this faq.


Pursuant to the Board approved Background CheckPolicy 2.1, only background checks from the Federation's approved vendor are acceptable.

Soo Bahk Do Federation   01/06/2019  

Be the first person to like this faq.

The printed order form for Instructor Certification Study Kits features an oath by the purchaser that the student has discussed their plans with the Instructor and that they understand that acquisition of the study kit does not entitle them to test.

When subscribing to the installment payment plan for an Instructor Certification Kit on the Soo Bahk Do® Institute, the purchaser will soon be required to check a box indicating the same oath and understanding.

There is not currently a restriction on how early or at what rank a person is when ordering the study kits. The requirements only apply to a student's eligibility to enter an apprenticeship program or to take the examination for certification. So even if a white belt orders a Sa Bom Certification Study Kit (for whatever reason) they are not eligible to enroll in an apprenticeship program until their instructor offers it and they are not eligible to test until all requirements are met including the Instructor's recommendation.

This is much like a 1st year college student buying a graduate level textbook in the college bookstore. They can read it, but until they take the related course and pass it, their possession of the text book means nothing more than an indication of their interest in the subject matter.

Soo Bahk Do Biz   04/20/2016  

Be the first person to like this faq.


The Federation seeks to employ the best practice of setting prices that are adequate for cost recovery of the product or service being provided plus sufficient margin to generate additional funds for pursuit of mission objectives and organizational goals.

The Background Check and Continuing Education subscription will provide far more value to participants that the nominal annual cost of the program.

Soo Bahk Do Federation   01/06/2019  

Be the first person to like this faq.

Question: I never thought about becoming a certified Instructor and am now eligible to test for 4th Dan and life changes now present me with an opportunity to pursue Soo Bahk Do® instructor certification. I have been assisting and teaching at my Instructor's dojang for years. How do I proceed?

Answer: You can purchase all three Soo Bahk Do® instructor certification study kits at the same time and that will open the door for you to proceed as expeditiously as possible toward Sa Bom certification or you can purchase them in sequence. The only thing your choice changes is the overall time to achieve Sa Bom eligibility as indicated below.

Since you have not previously applied for any level of Instructor Certification and your target rank (or current rank) is 4th Dan or above, you need to proceed a bit differently than is typical.

  • Jo Kyo requires 90 day possession of kit and apprenticeship time before eligibility to test. Time begins counting at time of kit purchase.
  • Kyo Sa requires 1 year possession of kit and apprenticeship time before eligibility to test. Time begins counting at time of kit purchase.
  • Sa Bom requires 2 year possession of kit and apprenticeship time before eligibility to test. Time begins counting at time of kit purchase.
    • Purchasing all at the same time starts the countdown for all three from the same date. (Total of 2 years until Sa Bom Eligibility)
    • Purchasing them at different times results in consecutive time. (Total of 3 years and 90 days until Sa Bom Eligibility)

The content of the kits overlap so the Sa Bom Kit contains the contents of all three kits, so you only need one physical kit. The Jo Kyo and Kyo Sa fees you pay cover the lower certifications and thus create a record of your progression through each certification as the prerequisite for the next certification as you successfully complete each segment of study and apprenticeship.

Kwan Jang Nim's guidance about Jo Kyo and Kyo Sa certification titles are that they not really appropriate for use over 4th Dan. ( i.e. the proper title for a master is "Master" not Jo Kyo Nim or Kyo Sa Nim, even if the Master possesses those certifications.) However, once you achieve Kyo Sa certification you would be authorized to sit on gup testing boards and sign gup testing recommendations for students. In fact, that is very likely to be part of your apprenticeship training during the year after Kyo Sa as you prepare to apply for Sa Bom. The instructor who is training you may evaluate your ability to run gup examinations independently and as a certified Kyo Sa you can do so.

You should proceed through each Instructor certification examination just as any other applicant would.

That is:

  • After study kit acquisition and 90 days of Jo Kyo apprenticeship, your Instructor could test you for the Jo Kyo Certification at your dojang and submit your recommendation to HQ. Successful completion of the Jo Kyo exam administered by your instructor at the dojang will satisfy the TAC's prerequisite requirement for you to be eligible to apply for Kyo Sa certification.
  • After an additional 275 days (365-90) of Kyo Sa apprenticeship, then your Regional Examiners could test you for Kyo Sa in accordance with your Region's Kyo Sa test procedures. Successful completion of the Kyo Sa exam administered by your Regional Examiners will satisfy the TAC's prerequisite requirement for you to be eligible to apply for Sa Bom certification.
  • After an additional 365 days (2yrs -1 yr) of Sa Bom apprenticeship, then you can apply with the TAC to test for Sa Bom at an approaching Ko Dan Ja Shim Sa.

You can pay for all the kits at once or you can activate a special 12-18 month installment payment plan on the Soo Bahk Do Institute under which you could make equal monthly payments. Each certification can only be issued after sufficient monthly payments have been made to cover each certification. Please contact Headquarters if you want to use this option.



Soo Bahk Do Biz   07/25/2016  

Be the first person to like this faq.

A change of ownership of a Moo Duk Kwan® certified school warrants due diligence by all parties to the ownership change and the Federation's procedures are intended to help assure clear understanding of changes and preserve harmony among all involved or impacted by the ownership change of a Certified Teaching Program or Certified School.

There are many different scenarios that can occur, but the following procedures apply to the majority of circumstances.


tomball-soo-bahk-do-buildingThe "owner" of a teaching program or school is the party responsible for payment of the bills and dues associated with the entity and for assuring delivery of services to Federation members at the location in accordance with Federation guidelines.

The "owner" and Chief Certified Instructor of a school need not be the same party.  In some cases a School Owner is a corporation and thus independent of any individual person and thus cannot hold Instructor Certification.

The Certified Instructor of a school or the "Supervising Sa Bom" is the party responsible for overseeing technical training, administering students testings, assuring submission of student rank promotion requests to TAC via HQ.

A Supervising Sa Bom may or may not be responsible for receiving student rank certificates from HQ and/or for assuring students are awarded their rank certificates as expected by TAC depending on the arrangement between a School Owner and a Supervising Sa Bom.

In many cases the School Owner retains these responsibilities and the Supervising Sa Bom essentially only signs rank promotion recommendations submitted to TAC via HQ on behalf of the School Owner who is generally not a Certified Instructor.

A new owner of an existing Certified Teaching Program or Certified School needs to file the Application For Studio Certification forms upon which they can indicate who the affiliated instructors at the location will be. (if any)

HQ will establish a new studio ID and studio account for the new owner who becomes responsible for all financial aspects of the school. The school account owner is allowed to place orders at studio prices, is responsible for school certification renewals, etc., earns affiliate commissions from students subscribing at the Soo Bahk Do Institute, etc.

Existing Soo Bahk Do Institute earnings streams from existing students will NOT be transferred to a new owner. However, a new owner can effect such a transfer by advising students to renew their subscriptions and select the new school name~owner from the drop down during checkout when they do so.  This action by the student will transfer affiliate earnings from the existing school owner to the new school owner for that student going forward.

The new Application For Studio Certification will also indicate the billing and mailing address to be used for shipment of statements, certificates, orders, correspondence, etc.

The existing Teaching Program or School Certification was based on circumstances and ownership at the time that certification was issued and when those circumstances change substantially, then a new application process documents those changes and documents that all appropriate parties are notified of the changes and no unforeseen issues exist.

A new studio ID and Certificate will be issued to assure all students and student activity and school activity is properly associated with the new owner and instructors as well as the responsible school account.

The Regional Examiners who receive a copy of the filed Application For Studio Certification will decide whether or not a school inspection visit is required.

Upon receipt of the Regional Examiner's completed visit form or a written statement from the REX that no visit is needed, then a new school certificate will be issued and shipped to the new owner.

In some cases the current owner may have already communicated with all parties involved, so the paperwork and application fee are merely formalities to assure everything discussed with all parties about changes at the school is documented at Headquarters.



If the school "owner" is not actually changing, then the process may differ from that described in Scenario 1.

In some cases a school owner may be temporarily absent from their school for a short while (six months or less) for military deployment, work relocation, life change, etc.  and will make arrangements for other parties to oversee school operations during the owner's temporary absence.  Should the owner's absence exceed six months, then Scenario 1 may apply. 

The Federation does not concern itself with how a school owner collects school revenue during their absence, rather the Federation's relationship with the school "owner" relates to the party directly responsible for payments to the Federation for school dues and fees, orders, certification renewals, etc. and for assuring delivery of services to Federation members at the school.

If the current owner intends to remain personally responsible and liable for the school account, school fees, renewals, etc. and is planning to authorize other parties to incur charges on the existing school account on the owner's behalf, then the owner is financially responsible for all charges on the account just as when allowing a 3rd party to use your credit card.

In Scenario 2 the owner can file an updated Application For Studio Certification (new names, who is responsible for what, addresses, etc.)  and indicate the new instructors and who shall be directly responsible at your school for the duties of the Certified Instructor as described above including the address where student certificates shall be shipped. Your updated Application for School Certification should clearly indicate your intent for all readers. Attach an additional letter of explanation if appropriate.

It is not a best practice to name multiple parties to be responsible for the same duties at the school, rather a single party should be named for each key school function thus identifying them as the party who is ultimately responsible. For example, who will serve in the "owner" role and who will serve in the "Chief Instructor" or "Supervising Sa Bom" role.

The Regional Examiners who receive a copy of the updated Application For Studio Certification will decide whether or not a school inspection visit is required.

Upon receipt of the Regional Examiner's completed visit form or a statement from the REX that no visit is needed, then all parties identified on the updated application may proceed under the existing owner and existing school certification.

No new school ID or certificate will be issued.

Be aware that in the "supervising Sa Bom" scenario should student Gup Tests fail to be submitted, should student certificates not be awarded, etc., the school "owner" remains responsible in the event of administrative lapses and any related financial liabilities.

It is prudent to discuss the terms of your "owner" oversight of such matters in advance with a Supervising Sa Bom when an owner will be absent or relinquishes those responsibilities, just as a landlord reserves the right to inspect a rented premises and notifies a tenant of that in the rental agreement.

All the necessary forms and other valuable information that may be helpful to a new school owner or whoever will be responsible for continuing to attract new students to the school in the owner's absence can be found on www.soobahkdo.biz

Please email headquarters@soobahkdo.com should you require additional information.

Soo Bahk Do Biz   08/01/2016  

Be the first person to like this faq.

In short, all will need to activate the  Background Checks and Continuing Education Subscription to access the Background Check system, mandatory Child Safety training and other Continuing Education training published by the Kwan Jang NimUSA Technical Advisory Committee and United States Soo Bahk Do Moo Duk Kwan Federation® Board of Directors.

1st Time Applicants for Instructor Certification, CTP Certification, and School Certification will find instructions about how to acquire a background check in the application documents.

How Do I Become A Moo Duk Kwan® Certified Instructor?

Soo Bahk Do Federation   11/08/2018  

1 people found this faq useful.

  1. Currently Certified School Owners: Visit the Soo Bahk Do Institute and purchase the Certified Studio Continuing Education subscription using the provided discount code.
  2. Currently Certified Instructors: Visit the Soo Bahk Do Institute and purchase the Certified Instructor Continuing Education subscription using the provided discount code.
  3. 1st Time Instructor Certification Applicants: Follow the instructions in your Instructor Certification Study Kit.
  4. 1st Time CTP and School Certification Applicants: Follow the instructions on the School Certification application form.

Soo Bahk Do Biz   11/08/2018  

Be the first person to like this faq.

Policy language is intended to be broad and invoke the very thought process you went through. "How might that apply in my circumstances?"
For example, in a case where the Federation might have a volunteer who is assigned to drive a busload of youth somewhere or to supervise a group of youth for an extended time, etc., then the Federation might require a background check beforehand.
At the school level if a school owner has a volunteer helping them that stays overnight with students at the school for a parent's night out or chaperones youth on a camping trip or to the Nationals for a weekend, etc., then the school owner might require a background check beforehand.
There may be some state laws that are even more specific, but this is the Federation's call to awareness for all.

Soo Bahk Do Biz   11/10/2018  

Be the first person to like this faq.

QUESTION: I am exploring possible options to open a studio in t he next few months.  I would like to inquire about the process and the cost to open either a full certified studio, a START program or a teaching program.  As a matter of due diligence, I am also weighing other non-federation options. I would like to ask you if you could help me to better understand:

ANSWER:  Live links have been added to your question text above and they will redirect you to information about each area of your inquiry.

Soo Bahk Do Biz   07/13/2016  

Be the first person to like this faq.

Question: Who can access the content on the Soo Bahk Do Biz site?  Is it like the Federation wiki where registrants are moderated and only members can gain access?

Answer:  As of 07/11/2016, only logged in users on the BIZ site can view restricted content; however, in the future some content on the BIZ site may require login AND membership and/or Instructor Certification and/or School Certification in order to access restricted content.

Soo Bahk Do Biz   08/21/2016  

Be the first person to like this faq.

November 9, 1945 in Korea Hwang Kee named his 1st martial art school Moo Duk Kwan® and began instructing his martial art system of Hwa Soo Do, then later Tang Soo Do.

1974-76 Hwang Kee led formation of the U.S. Federation and assigned it exclusive rights to the Moo Duk Kwan® name and logo for commerce in the United States

June 19, 1975 the initial election results were tallied and the 1st Charter Convention for the newly created United States Tang Soo Do Moo Duk Kwan Federation® was scheduled for June 28, 1975.

June 26 ,1976,  the 501(c)(4) nonprofit United States Tang Soo Do Moo Duk Kwan Federation® was incorporated and chartered as the only U.S. entity authorized by Moo Duk Kwan® Founder Hwang Kee to use his Moo Duk Kwan® martial art school name and his Tang Soo Do / Soo Bahk Do® martial art system name and content in commerce in the United States.

On multiple occasions since the Federation's inception, the Federation's Board of Directors have complied with its Charter provision to defend and protect from misuse the Moo Duk Kwan® name and logos associated with the established and well known reputation of Hwang Kee and the U.S. Federation.

October 2001, Robert and Eric Kovaleski , a.ka. Tang Soo Karate School (incorporated in September 1995,) filed an application to trademark International Tang Soo Do Moo Duk Kwan Association and the fist logo.

January 4, 2002 their application was rejected by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) for likelihood of confusion with existing registered trademarks including the Federation’s.

July 5, 2002 the Kovaleski’s application for trademark was abandoned.

October 2010 multiple websites and social media bearing the name and design which had been rejected by the USPTO came to the Federation’s attention.

October 29, 2010 a cease and desist notice was sent to the Kovaleskis by the Federation’s intellectual property attorney. An attorney for the Kovaleskis responded saying they needed more time to reply and then no further communication was forthcoming. This is not uncommon in these matters and typically indicates the infringing activity will eventually cease.

August 16 to 23, 2011 the Kovaleskis and a group visited Korea where they formed a relationship with Korea based World Moo Duk Kwan General Federation (http://www.moodukwonkorea.org/) and unknown to the Federation at that time, the WMDKGF appointed Eric Kovaleski as USA East Coast Regional Representative on August 21,2011.

The World Moo Duk Kwan General Federation website states the motivation for incorporating (which they characterize as “formed with the permission of the Korean Government”) as”… Tragically our founder passed away in 2002. Before he passed on he ignored his original group of protégé's and handed control of his art of Soo Bahk Do to his son. This disrupted the harmony originally established and nurtured by him in the past. His older generation of students (ranging from age 80 to 89) established a corporation, the World Moo Duk Kwan General Federation…” In an interview Robert Kovaleski stated, "HC Hwang didn’t respect his seniors- Let’s just say that!”

November 10, 2011, but undiscovered at that time, Widmer Signs, a sign company in Scranton, PA, posted photos on Facebook of new signage bearing Federation Trademarks and indicated they were being made for the Kovaleskis in preparation for an event.

In February 2012 multiple Federation members received an event solicitation from the Kovaleskis which featured the name and design previously rejected by the USPTO. Federation members reported it was confusingly similar to the Federation’s trademarks. The literature indicated that the Kovaleskis were hosting World Moo Duk Kwan General Federation representatives including Yong Duk Kim Dan Bon #2 as President and Hee Suk Choi Dan #5 as Vice President to present seminars on May 10, 2012 in Dickson City, PA.

February 29, 2012 The Federation Board of Directors met and responded to member reports and Kwan Jang Nim’s request for prompt follow-up on this serious trademark infringement. The Board approved a motion for Appointed Director Phillip Bartolacci, Sa Bom Nim to reach out to the Kovaleskis and seek an amicable resolution within a few days with the stipulation that if that failed then the Federation’s attorney would be authorized to initiate legal action. The Kovaleskis were unreceptive to that outreach.

April 10, 2012 the Federation filed for a preliminary injunction in Federal court in Scranton, PA and a hearing was set for May 8, 2012.

May 3, 2012 the Federation Board held an emergency meeting and authorized the Executive Administrator, Phil Duncan to appear in court with Federation counsel, Chuck Kennedy on May 8, 2012 in Scranton, PA. During the injunction hearing, additional literature published by the World Moo Duk Kwan General Federation was procured and it pronounced Yong Duk Kim Dan Bon #2 and Hee Suk Choi Dan #5 as co-founders of the Moo Duk Kwan martial art school in 1945.

The Federation possesses evidence contradicting these claims including, but not limited to, photos and rank certification records issued by Hwang Kee to these men as his students (Hwang Kee's original records indicate Dan #5 for Choi Hee Suk, not Dan #3),  a sworn affidavit by Yong Duk Kim#2 notarized in 1983, stating that Hwang Kee was the sole Moo Duk Kwan founder, Hee Seok Choi's resignation from the Moo Duk Kwan in 1965, s 2004 letter from Yong Duk Kim Dan #2 disavowing World Moo Duk Won organizers at that time.

May 9, 2012 Federal Judge Mariani signed an order restraining the Kovaleskis from using our marks during their events May 10-12.

May 10-12, 2012 the Kovaleskis complied with the court order during their events; however, the representatives from the World Moo Duk Kwan General Federation did not, but they are not parties to this USA legal action.

October 16, 2014 Eric Kovaleski posted on Facebook that he had been appointed Vice President of the World  Tang Soo Do General Federation, Moo Duk Kwan in Seoul, Korea.

February 9th, 2015 is the trial date set by Federal Judge Mariani in Scranton, PA.

Soo Bahk Do Federation   11/04/2016  

Be the first person to like this faq.

The Federation will be creating and providing ongoing educational content about child safety and best business practices for growing a school so there will be ongoing education rather than one-off training.

Soo Bahk Do Biz   01/06/2019  

Be the first person to like this faq.

Log In is required for submitting new FAQ. Click Here