Competition Poomse


Although patterns are used in technical training and as part of grading exams they can also be performed in a competitive environment. At local and club level patterns can be part of a competition and they are also competed at high levels with Commonwealth, European and World championships. Patterns can be open where you choose your own form to perform, or you may need to perform the pattern for your grade. Some clubs may teach patterns with weapons and in some competitions there is a category for this, although it is less common. Another way that patterns can be performed is in teams or pairs, this is commonly referred to as synchronised patterns.


There are a few different formats that can be used for poomse competitions and the style used will depend on the size and level of competition. The most common formats have been outlined below.

Cut Off System – This uses preliminary rounds as well as a semi final and final round to decide who has won. Preliminary rounds are only used with a lot of competitors and the top 50% from each round will progress to the next round. Advancement is based on highest points scored. Different patterns may be required in each round.

Elimination – The opponent is descided randomly or by seeding and both competitors enter the ring together with one blue and the other red. They both perform their own pattern and judges will decide the winner, the other competitor is eliminated immediately. The winners will then be randomly matched again and this continues until the final.

Round Robin – Each competitor competes against every other competitor and two will perform at once. Overall winner is decided based on the judges score.


This scoring information shows a basic idea of how patterns might be scored in competition, although there could be a lot of variation on this.

Recognized pattern shows the total score possible for performing a pre set pattern (taegeuk patterns, Koryo etc.). This score is then broken down into 4.0 for accuracy, and 6.0 possible for presentation.

The presentation score is broken down into 3 sub sections which are each scored out of 2.0. This method of scoring may vary considerable between clubs, organisations and level of competition.


There is likely to be some variation between the layouts used at club level and high level competition. However the World Taekwondo approved layout is usually similar to this.

– Seven judges

– Four facing the contestants, three facing the back of them

– Referee next to the first judge

– Desk of other officials will be about 3m to the right of the first judge

– Contestants will be positioned 2m back from the centre of the performance area

– Competition monitors will be to the side of the ring and inspection table near the entry to the ring

– Ring size 0f 10m

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