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Taekwon-Do Dublin TKD

Master Howard helps Umpires to see the Point



Our very own Master Robert Howard lead the recent RITA’s National ITF Umpire Course held in Carrick-on-Suir.   As well a teaching at the Cabra school Master Howard is chair of the RITA’s Umpire Committee and he led the course with his good friend and fellow masrer, Master Mark O’Donnell from Galway Taekwon-Do School.

The event was hosted by Mr Paul Tobin and the Carrick-on-Suir Taekwon-Do School. In attendance were members from Old Bawn Waterford, Carrick-on-Suir, Fethard and Red Star.

The morning started with a power point presentation on the role and duties of an umpire. Master Howard stressed that fairness and unbiased decision making is the corner stone of being a good umpire. He said ‘You can make mistakes, or not know something, or you can be wrong in your understanding of the rules, but we can fix that. What we can’t fix is a biased umpire. We can’t trust you and the competitors and students can’t trust you.’ He added, ‘that is not the Taekwon-Do way’.

Master O’Donnell continued the presentation with a guide to judging patterns.  The trainee umpires got to practice their scoring by watching videos of patterns and using the electronic scoring (clickers) system. They then got to discuss and share their views, and by the end of the session all the umpires’ scores were converging to a common norm.

Mater Howard led the session on Power Breaking and Special Technique and again the umpires got to practice blue flagging or red flagging competitors (on video) breaking with techniques used at RITA competitions.

The afternoon was focussed on sparring. Both corner judging and centre refereeing was covered in detail. It was clear from the corner judging that many of the participants had extensive tournament experience and were well able to award the correct points.  There B class umpires were guided in the proper hand signals and ring protocol as well as the main fouls and tricks competitors do. The A class umpires covered the Fight System scoring software and Jury President duties.

The day ended with the two Masters thanking the participants for their openness and willingness to learn. They also thanked Mr Paul Tobin and his member for the use of the great facilities at their full time dojang.

This latest course on the 40th anniversary of the association means that almost all the RITA’s black belts are now qualified umpires and we should have a fair and high standard of judging at the Cork event. So that’s another reason why the students of GM Howard’s dojang will be up early on Saturday the 31st of March and getting the bus to the ITF-Ireland Cup in Cork.

Photos of the umpire course are on the RITA’s facebook page.


Students at Grandmaster Howard’s Taekwon-Do School in Cabra wowed a packed hall of spectators at their annual January martial arts demonstration.  The Taekwon-Do students aged from 6 to 73 years demonstrated all aspects of the Korean martial art. The younger children showed off the jumping, kicking and flexibility, while the higher grades impressed the audience with the vast array of self-defence moves and spectacular kicks. Some of the students said afterwards that ‘The highlight of the evening was when the black belts smashed their way through piles of timber, tiles and bricks.’ Grandmaster Howard rounded off the night with an impressive knife-hand strike into tiles. The event was to launch the Taekwon-Do school’s new beginners’ classes held every Tuesday and Thursday at 8 pm in the Cabra Parkside Community Centre (The Bogies),Ratoath Rd, Cabra.


The videos from the Demonstration are now available on the site at:


For further information see our classes section



Happy Christmas to all the members of Grandmaster Howard’s Taekwon-Do School and to their families. The last class was Tuesday 20th December and we start back training on Tuesday the 3rd of January 2012. The Friday Tigers class will start back the 6th of January. We’ll be having a New Year Demonstration on Tuesday 24th January and starting Adult and Teenagers beginners classes on Tuesday 31st of January. Have a great Christmas and we’ll see you in the new year.






In recognition of his promotion to 9th degree and his dedication to Taekwon-Do the students of GM Howard’s Dojang presented Grandmaster Howard with a beautiful piece of engraved glass. The glass had a picture of GM Howard in the centre and it was surrounded by the place and year of all his black belt promotions, from 1st degree (Oxford 1971) to 9th degree (Pyongyang 2011).  Grandmaster Howard was genuinely surprised and delighted when he received the award from the students.

Also on the night, Senior Master Anthony Phelan (RITA Vice-President) officially presented GM Howard with an embroidered IX degree black belt. Senior master Phelan said ‘Traditionally Grandmaster Howard would present his new 1st degree black belts with their first black belt. But his instructor First Grandmaster Rhee lives in Glasgow, so behalf of the RITA and the Cabra students I’d like to present you with this embroidered 9th degree black belt.’

The Cabra members would like to thank Mr Tobin from Carrick on Suir for organizing the embroidery


Congratulations to all the beginners who passed their first grading under ITF Examiner Senior Master Anthony Phelan (8th degree). All the beginners were successfully promoted to 9th kup (yellow tag). SM Phelan was very pleased with the standard and gave some useful advice and tips to each member grading. Two members from the main class were also promoted; Arno Denne to 1st kup (black tag) and Greg Costello to 6th kup (green belt).

Full list of results below.


Arno Denne 1st kup
Greg Costello 6th kup
Tommy McCluskey 9th kup
Rory Callan 9th kup
Kevin Dunne 9th kup
Alex Petrisor 9th kup
Judy Chen 9th kup
Katie Callan 9th kup
Simon Palmer 9th kup
Aodh O’Leary 9th kup

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