The U.S. National Dan Program is a program instituted by USA Taekwondo (USAT) in July 2016 to issue dan certificates for participation in national events sanctioned by USA Taekwondo. Essentially, the program expands the number of athletes who are able to compete in USAT events.
Previously, to compete in USAT national events, an athlete would need to have a Kukkiwon dan certificate. Under the new program however, a Kukkiwon dan certificate is still sufficient, but now non-Kukkiwon dan holders can also compete by obtaining a U.S. National Dan Certificate. USAT outsourced the process of obtaining U.S. National Dan Certificates to the U.S. Taekwondo Grandmasters Society (USTGS). There are several ways to obtain a U.S. National Dan Certificate:
- For a fee, the USTGS will convert a dan certificate from a recognized taekwondo association to a U.S. National Dan Certificate. As of this writing, the only recognized associations are the ITF and the ATA.
- Note: This conversion can happen only once. So for example if you are an ITF 3rd dan, you can get a U.S. National Dan Certificate for 3rd dan...but to get a U.S. National Dan Certificate for 4th dan you'll have to take the USAT/USTGS dan promotion tests that will be held at national competitions.
- As previously mentioned, the USAT/USTGS will be hosting dan promotion tests at USAT national competitions and other events, to issue U.S. National Dan Certificates.
- Taekwondo schools themselves can register to become a USA Taekwondo Club. Once they have done so, they can process U.S. National Dan Applications.