Personalities who got honorary taekwondo black belts

2:57:00 PM Tkd kwan 10 Comments

Russian president Vladimir Putin has been presented with a black belt and became a grandmaster of Taekwondo during an official visit to South Korea, state media said.
Mr. Putin never never kicked, punched or practiced Taekwondo before, he was awarded a Taekwondo 9th Dan, which makes him holding a rank higher than people who spent over 40 years of Taekwondo practice.
Putin practiced Judo and he truly hold a black belt in the Japanese martial art, and his skills are great in it.
The legend Muhammad Ali was awarded black belt from the former president Un Young Kim during his visit to the Kukkiwon in June 1976, and he was accompanied by his Taekwondo friend grand master Jhoon Rhee who was holding a Taekwondo 10th Dan black belt, and who is known as the father of American Taekwondo.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic has been given an honorary black belt in Taekwondo in Italy, but Zlatan first earned a black belt in Taekwondo when he was 17. He has nice skills and he can perform many Taekwondo kicks, and he is even using some Taekwondo skills in his football matches.
Bollywood actor Shah Rukh Khan was presented with an honorary belt in Taekwondo and bestowed the title of an Honorary Ambassador for Culture and Tourism by the South Korean Government. The actor has been awarded the 5th degree black belt of Taekwondo.
JOINT BASE CHARLESTON, S.C. Rose Alexander, 628th Air Base Wing Public Affairs chief of external operations, received an honorary USA Taekwondo black belt from Grand Master Ray Smith, 8th degree Taekwondo Black Belt,
World Taekwondo Federation (WTF) President Choue Chung-won, left, presents an honorary Taekwondo black belt and uniform to Nepali President Bidhya Devi Bhandari at the presidential office in Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal.
Tuesday, February 18 2014, Seoul - President Dalia Grybauskaitė, was awarded an honorary 9th Dan taekwondo black belt, certificate and uniform by the President of the World Taekwondo Federation, Chungwon Choue.
The WTF President underlined that an honorary black belt is a sign of great respect for Lithuania's head of state, acknowledging her contribution to building a better and more peaceful world.
Many Taekwondo practitioners do not really like the idea of awarding people who never did Taekwondo before, while others think that it is a way to reward people who support Taekwondo events and do efforts to promote the Korean martial art.
Shah Rukh Khan ( SRK ) Receives Honorary Taekwondo Black Belt .


  1. Didn't the Pope get one too?

  2. dr frederic lee (lee chen kin) the father of British taekwando was awarded his 9th dan by the president of the BTA in September 2018 with failing eyesight his regret that he coundnt go to korea for the grading both fred and tony quigley were awarded 9 dan for services to taekwando

  3. Totally wrong. You have to earn your black belt. I never believed in any honorary degrees. I cheapens the hard work we have all put in over the years to actually EARN our black belts. If one already trains in TKD and suffers an injury or illness, then I can accept a test that matches their ability, but to give a grandmaster black belt to politicians or actors is not right. They are only getting the belt because they are a celebrity.

    1. Totally agree

    2. I understand your frustration. I have never done TKD when I was young, but I got my son involved years ago. His Korean master allows me to strengthen my son's core and many other students at the school as a volunteer because I love the sport and these kids get a lot out of it. I have been volunteering my time to improve these kids strength, speed, accuracy and Technik for over 2 years now. I have parents just short of begging me to except their child in our group, but if the child doesn't want to train with us or the Master of the school doesn't consent to it, I have to say maybe another time when the child is ready. Just yesterday, the Master of the school invited me in his office to inform me that I will be awarded an honorary 1st Dan black belt. I was surprized because I have never heard of this before. I just did some research and it lead me here. I was told last night by a 4th Dan that it is huge honor to be given one. Anyways, It must be a Korean thing.

    3. This issue of awarding honorary belt and dan degrees to celebrities is a bullshit. They do just to photographed close to the celebrity! They think to gain honor but to me they look just ridiculos...belt and dan degrees are earned with hard work, training and experience in the taekwondo club. That is my opinion

  4. Looks like all the honorary grades are awarded in WTF style? Don't agree with awarding honorary grades and a 9th degree award to someone that doesn't train at all is disrespecting all the masters who have worked 30 or 40 years for it!

  5. Honor is the word that needs to be understood first then you wont be angry or frustrated when one is honoured with a black belt ...if it takes a lot of of hard work for one to get it that's the honor that was seen by your seniors to award those deserving personal because thy have worked hard and earned respect in every field that their are under that's TAEKWONDO....