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TheHighlander
Yellow Belt
Yellow Belt

Joined: 10 Apr 2009
Posts: 33
Location: Illinois
Styles: Shotokan

PostPosted: Fri Nov 11, 2011 1:16 pm    Post subject: Dissapointment with grading results Reply with quote

I would appreciate people's opinion on this.

My wife just tested for 4th kyu last week. She kicked butt - she knew it and I knew it.

Went to class this week and found out she received a half-rank. She gets to wear the 4th kyu belt and test for 3rd kyu in 6mos., but has a lot of ground to cover to do so. We were both shocked. there was never any indication of concern about this from the instructors either. They always gave her the feeling that should stood above others at her level.

Disclaimer: yes I am her husband, but I have always prided myself on giving her a fair assessment of where I thought she (or my kids) stood. Never a false sense of standing. She was more than ready for this test.

We are part of a very large org so testing is done if front of various and random instructors and black belts, not necessarily our instructors.

There is no dispute process and we accept that, but she went from a very dedicated student who put in a lot of extra time, to questioning why even continue?

It is not necessarily the rank itself, but her abilities and efforts not being recognized. I honestly don't know how to help her work through this.
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Montana
Red Belt
Red Belt

Joined: 18 Apr 2007
Posts: 823
Location: Formerly Kalispell, Montana, now Spokane, WA
Styles: Shorin Ryu Matsumura Kenpo & Kobudo

PostPosted: Fri Nov 11, 2011 7:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Since you mentioned there was a board of other instructors other than your wifes normal instructor, I would guess that they didn't share your opinion of your wifes skills and looked at her thru more unbiased eyes than yoyu and her instructor did.

What you saw from your wifes performance might not be the same thing the other instructors saw, or were looking for.
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Patrick
KF Administrator

Joined: 01 May 2001
Posts: 27302
Location: Los Angeles, California

PostPosted: Tue Nov 15, 2011 4:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry to hear that.

I apologize if this sounds harsh at all, but as I read your post, it seemed to me that you and your wife may be taking it a little hard. "Help her work through this"? It was one test. If you and your family are healthy, you have jobs or a job, a roof over your head and food to eat, then you are fortunate and perspective is needed.

In the grand scheme, it's not huge, it's one test and life is full of this. People do something good and not get recognized for it all the time. At work, at home, in their hobbies and day to day life. You either continue to do your best (for yourself, as much as for recognition), give up or something in between.

So, the way to work through it is just to keep trying hard and try to learn from past experiences. There is no dispute process, but have you reached out to the instructors who graded her, and in a very pleasant manner, asked for their thoughts on what they saw or didn't see?

If this one experience has put her off of the martial arts as a whole and she's asking why continue, then maybe the martial arts aren't a big passion for her, which is totally fine.

As many veterans of this community will know, I am not a martial artist, but I do have things that I am passionate about. I am a professional speaker and I speak at conferences and events around the country. When you are a professional speaker, you step on stage and essentially say "here is what I know - judge me." It is an interesting experience.

I have a great deal of experience in my field, so I feel confident in my knowledge and my ability to draw from that experience. That doesn't mean that every time I speak, I deliver the best talk ever or that, even if I feel I did, everyone in the room loved it or found value in it.

I mean, I once had a lady come up to me RIGHT AFTER I LEFT THE STAGE and tell me that she didn't know what she was supposed to get out of my talk. I listen to all feedback, but to say it right after I left the stage... that's harsh. I'd never do that to someone. But, she did. I apologized and encouraged her to, next time, ask questions to get the answers she sought. Still, I didn't stop speaking because of that because I find it rewarding and like to share what I know.

So, in all, my opinion would be to keep it in perspective and, if you are passionate about the martial arts, to continue to work hard and learn. Best of luck!

Patrick
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Last edited by Patrick on Wed Nov 16, 2011 1:44 pm; edited 1 time in total
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DWx
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 17 Jan 2007
Posts: 6249
Location: UK
Styles: Tae Kwon Do & Yang family Tai Chi

PostPosted: Tue Nov 15, 2011 6:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

TheHighlander I know it sucks not passing a grading but it isn't the end of the world. Could be any number of reasons why she failed but if she's really into her training its not a reason to give up. IMHO the best students (both in attitude and skill) are the ones who failed somewhere along the line but kept training and decided that they were going to try their hardest to never fail ever again. Often those types of students put a ton of extra work in to make sure there's no reason to fail them in any exam. Few people pass their driving test 1st time, sometimes on the day things just don't go according to plan. But that's no reason to give up learning.
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sensei8
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 14940
Location: Houston, TX
Styles: Shindokan Saitou-ryu [Shuri-te/Okinawa-te based]

PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2011 12:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Don't worry about any test; they'll take care of themselves. Also, don't assume a position that neither you and/or your wife possess. Student=your wife. Observer=you. Instructor=neither of you.

You and your wife trust the instructor to teach, so, you both should trust the instructor and the like to pass/fail "their" student(s) as they feel fit.

Nobody likes to "fail" any test, but, your wife received a partial rank, while others might've not received any promotion.

Let the tests take care of them and worry about only one thing...TRAIN...TRAIN....TRAIN!!

My Dai-Soke always said this to me concerning rank promotions, if I asked...
"Maybe!"...That's it, anything else would've been insulting to him and to our Soke Saitou.

It's all good.


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MasterPain
Black Belt
Black Belt

Joined: 26 Oct 2010
Posts: 1949
Location: Parts Unknown
Styles: Bujin Bugei Jutsu, Backyard Kali, Satsui no Hadou

PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2011 1:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Patrick wrote:
Sorry to hear that.

I apologize if this sounds harsh at all, but as I read your post, it seemed to me that you and your wife may be taking it a little hard. "Help her work through this"? It was one test. If you and your family are healthy, you have jobs or a job, a roof over your head and food to eat, then you are fortunate and perspective is needed.

In the grand scheme, it's not huge, it's one test and life is full of this. People do something good and not get recognized for it all the time. At work, at home, in their hobbies and day to day life. You either continue to do your best (for yourself, as much as for recognition), give up or something in between.

So, the way to work through it is just to keep trying hard and try to learn from past experiences. There is no dispute process, but have you reached out to the instructors who graded her, and in a very pleasant manner, ask for their thoughts on what they saw or didn't see?

If this one experience has put her off of the martial arts as a whole and she's asking why continue, then maybe the martial arts aren't a big passion for her, which is totally fine.

As many veterans of this community will know, I am not a martial artist, but I do have things that I am passionate about. I am a professional speaker and I speak at conferences and events around the country. When you are a professional speaker, you step on stage and essentially say "here is what I know - judge me." It is an interesting experience.

I have a great deal of experience in my field, so I feel confident in my knowledge and my ability to draw from that experience. That doesn't mean that every time I speak, I deliver the best talk ever or that, even if I feel I did, everyone in the room loved in or found value in it.

I mean, I once had a lady come up to me RIGHT AFTER I LEFT THE STAGE and tell me that she didn't know what she was supposed to get out of my talk. I listen to all feedback, but to say it right after I left the stage... that's harsh. I'd never do that to someone. But, she did. I apologized and encouraged her to, next time, ask questions to get the answers she sought. Still, I didn't stop speaking because of that because I find it rewarding and like to share what I know.

So, in all, my opinion would be to keep it in perspective and, if you are passionate about the martial arts, to continue to work hard and learn. Best of luck!

Patrick


Great post.

I've been to other forums, and this is my favorite. As a martial artist who values concept over technique, I'm impressed by the ability of a non-martial artist to offer such insight on a martial arts forum from his own experience in other areas of life.

Patrick, from now on, you shall be known as the Teamaster.
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Patrick
KF Administrator

Joined: 01 May 2001
Posts: 27302
Location: Los Angeles, California

PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2011 1:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Haha. Thanks MasterPain. That means a lot to me.

Of course, I have never and will never try to offer anything in a discussion that demands martial arts expertise or proficiency, but I find that this issue is really one that is shared by people from all walks of life, in many different pursuits.

Thanks again,

Patrick
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Kuma
Black Belt
Black Belt

Joined: 03 Dec 2008
Posts: 1092


PostPosted: Thu Nov 17, 2011 8:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

sensei8 wrote:
Let the tests take care of them and worry about only one thing...TRAIN...TRAIN....TRAIN!!


I second this. Due to work, family, and military commitments, I went over five years before I finally achieved a belt promotion. Karate can many times be more of a solo endeavor than anything else. Sure you can get promoted and achieve recognition from your friends, but it's really how you feel about your training. If you see yourself constantly improving and seeing the benefits it has on the other areas of your life, that's progress to me.
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bushido_man96
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 31 Mar 2006
Posts: 28170
Location: Hays, KS
Styles: Taekwondo, Combat Hapkido, Aikido, GRACIE

PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2011 12:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My initial question is if perhaps giving a half-rank, as you mention, is something that happens commonly in that school? Perhaps this isn't unique to your wife, and may be something the school does on a regular basis.

I would encourage her to keep up her hard work and dedication. Gaining the knowledge and experience is great reward in itself. Time and hard work will pay off.
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madtanker
Orange Belt
Orange Belt

Joined: 16 Aug 2012
Posts: 117
Location: Toledo Ohio
Styles: Tang Soo Do/Hapkido

PostPosted: Thu Aug 16, 2012 4:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would say this to add:

If there is an appeals policy, then take it. If not, or if they are adament about making the situation stressful, then I am in firm belief that you should put the energy into practice rather than a fight that for whatever reason, you would be better off not taking up. Even if you 'win' you may lose later...
Congratulations on the promotion (whether 1/2 or not, it shows a level of dedication).
Overall, it is best to concentrate on the art than the rank within it...
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