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Himokiri Karate
Blue Belt
Blue Belt

Joined: 13 Aug 2009
Posts: 310


PostPosted: Fri Jun 18, 2021 8:11 pm    Post subject: Fighting for your belt!? Reply with quote

So a bit of an update with my situation. So I have been training in karate and boxing for years now. However my focus was on boxing but I have always trained in the techniques of karate but never got ranked. Few months ago, I found a teacher in Taekwondo since my preference for Karate technique is a mix of Tang Soo Do and Kyokushin which both have Korean origins in culture and technique. Its been few months that I have been training privately with my teacher and sessions have gotten extremely intense.

I then inquired about belt ranking and I informed him that my true wish is to be a teacher in Karate. Long story short, we came to this conclusion, forget about belt ranking, pretend they do not even exist. Continue to train like a mad man in regards to supreme cardio and endless repetition of techniques. Afterwards, go out, fight and win against black belts in a Kyokushin tournament or other full contact karate tournament. From there, I was told to make a video of the moves I know and plan to teach.

But most importantly. I was told to own up to this truth. That this is the route that I got a black belt. This also must be how my students get new belts. They compete in belt divisions and win their belts. This was the conclusion we arrived at our conversation in regards to an alternate way of achieving a black belt that is respectable.


Have you heard of this method?

The only example I can think of is Mr. Miyagi who awarded ( also stole) a black belt Daniel.
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Zaine
Black Belt
Black Belt

Joined: 31 Aug 2005
Posts: 1783
Location: Dallas, TX
Styles: Matsumura-Seito, Shobayashi-Ryu, Shudokan, Long Fist, American Street Karate, Southern Mantis, HEMA

PostPosted: Fri Jun 18, 2021 8:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I haven't heard of that. At its core, I don't think it's the worst method in the world. The issue you're going to run in to is that this is a very "hardcore" method of training. A part of teaching in general is being flexible in the way you teach. With things like karate, a largely recreational activity, there are a good amount of people who are signing up for fitness, or a reason to get out of the house, or because a friend is doing, and the list goes on. For that group, that way of training isn't going to work. Human behavior loves milestones, which a belt system gives, it loves goals, which a curriculum sets, and it loves seeing quantifiable change. The method of your teacher can only realistically offer the last and only barely. If your goal is to be a teacher, then I suggest, on top of training with this teacher, start going to a traditional dojo who is going to give that pedagogy to you.
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Himokiri Karate
Blue Belt
Blue Belt

Joined: 13 Aug 2009
Posts: 310


PostPosted: Mon Jun 21, 2021 6:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Zaine wrote:
I haven't heard of that. At its core, I don't think it's the worst method in the world. The issue you're going to run in to is that this is a very "hardcore" method of training. A part of teaching in general is being flexible in the way you teach. With things like karate, a largely recreational activity, there are a good amount of people who are signing up for fitness, or a reason to get out of the house, or because a friend is doing, and the list goes on. For that group, that way of training isn't going to work. Human behavior loves milestones, which a belt system gives, it loves goals, which a curriculum sets, and it loves seeing quantifiable change. The method of your teacher can only realistically offer the last and only barely. If your goal is to be a teacher, then I suggest, on top of training with this teacher, start going to a traditional dojo who is going to give that pedagogy to you.


This is true but due to the rise of Muay Thai and other MMA styles. I want to show case a combative side of karate. The fact is, Karate offers so much to other martial arts and the only way to show case its prowess is to fight. That and I was at several places that gave out belt if you just kept paying money and I got to green belt and I realized I was terrible. With Korean Karate (TSDK/TKD) as well as Kyokushin. I trained many years without going for any belt testing because I wanted to be the best white belt ever. Now I want to teach and a bit conflicted that I did not do ranking since I thought I would never ever want to be a black belt.

So now, I want to have a black belt because I want to be a teacher of Karate. No delusion of feeling invincible or confident. However, going back to "what it means to be a black belt" to me, the value comes from knowing how to fight. Its that simple.
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Zaine
Black Belt
Black Belt

Joined: 31 Aug 2005
Posts: 1783
Location: Dallas, TX
Styles: Matsumura-Seito, Shobayashi-Ryu, Shudokan, Long Fist, American Street Karate, Southern Mantis, HEMA

PostPosted: Tue Jun 22, 2021 10:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

So if you're at the point where you want to teach Karate and you feel the need to have a black belt to do so, I see basically two paths for you. You can A) Find a system that you like and train there regardless of how effective you feel the instructor is; or B) Find an instructor that you like and if it's a system you like, great, if not, oh well. I can tell you're someone who doesn't like the idea of BB emporiums, so I imagine that you're struggling with the latter option.

My 2 cents is this: If you want to teach karate, and you feel that you are in a position to do so, then teach it. Label it some generic karate (like American Karate-do), and find some students who vibe with the way that you want to teach it. If people can teach MMA without any traditional MA training, then I don't really see a reason that you can't take up the teacher roll as well.

I, too, got in to MA initially because I wanted to learn defense. I eventually fell in love with kata, and the other parts of the system as well, but, like you, my milestone for a solid black belt was, and in part remains, founded in being able to defend oneself. So I agree with you there. To me, a lot of MA value for myself comes in my ability to fight. With a traditional classroom structure, I think that you're going to struggle finding that. Schools that do so without focusing on MMA tend to struggle a little bit. Teachers, especially of MA, have to cast a wide net so that they can stay in business. Furthermore, they can't ignore the business aspects of their dojos. It's a hit we take to continue operation. Sometimes we don't get to focus as much on what we think is the reason for the art itself. This isn't a criticism of what you want to do in any way. I like the idea of an art that is combat based and focused. This is all just to say that compromise is necessary and I don't want you to have your passion dulled by some necessity of life.
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bushido_man96
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 31 Mar 2006
Posts: 28973
Location: Hays, KS
Styles: Taekwondo, Combat Hapkido, Aikido, GRACIE

PostPosted: Tue Jun 22, 2021 3:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If that is the path you want to take, why do full contact Karate tournaments when you could compete in MMA? You'd have to work all the ranges of combat, and it would be more complete than just doing stand-up tournaments.
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Himokiri Karate
Blue Belt
Blue Belt

Joined: 13 Aug 2009
Posts: 310


PostPosted: Wed Jun 23, 2021 9:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Zaine wrote:
So if you're at the point where you want to teach Karate and you feel the need to have a black belt to do so, I see basically two paths for you. You can A) Find a system that you like and train there regardless of how effective you feel the instructor is; or B) Find an instructor that you like and if it's a system you like, great, if not, oh well. I can tell you're someone who doesn't like the idea of BB emporiums, so I imagine that you're struggling with the latter option.

My 2 cents is this: If you want to teach karate, and you feel that you are in a position to do so, then teach it. Label it some generic karate (like American Karate-do), and find some students who vibe with the way that you want to teach it. If people can teach MMA without any traditional MA training, then I don't really see a reason that you can't take up the teacher roll as well.

I, too, got in to MA initially because I wanted to learn defense. I eventually fell in love with kata, and the other parts of the system as well, but, like you, my milestone for a solid black belt was, and in part remains, founded in being able to defend oneself. So I agree with you there. To me, a lot of MA value for myself comes in my ability to fight. With a traditional classroom structure, I think that you're going to struggle finding that. Schools that do so without focusing on MMA tend to struggle a little bit. Teachers, especially of MA, have to cast a wide net so that they can stay in business. Furthermore, they can't ignore the business aspects of their dojos. It's a hit we take to continue operation. Sometimes we don't get to focus as much on what we think is the reason for the art itself. This isn't a criticism of what you want to do in any way. I like the idea of an art that is combat based and focused. This is all just to say that compromise is necessary and I don't want you to have your passion dulled by some necessity of life.


I am for sure wanting to call it something generic. Truth is, I have trained in many forms of martial arts. From obscure and ancient to modern and trendy. Both from martial arts perspective as well as exercise and philosophy. Yet when its all said and done, when I sparring time comes. No matter what, my techniques are almost all a mix of Boxing and Karate.


Funny thing is, I have trained and studied as well as been culturally immersed in Kung Fu and even having a mentor in judo/sambo. But at the very end of the day, for me, it all comes down to employing karate and boxing. Even in pure boxing sparring, I may use few Karate footwork pattern or throw a counter similar to the reverse punch.

bushido_man96 wrote:
If that is the path you want to take, why do full contact Karate tournaments when you could compete in MMA? You'd have to work all the ranges of combat, and it would be more complete than just doing stand-up tournaments.


This is true and I agree with you. This is ideal but, the MMA gyms in my town are very much about enforcing their Muay Thai/Brazilian Jujitsu style. I asked if it would be alright for me to mix my Karate, they said "sure no problem, its MMA after all" but in actual class, its all pure Muay Thai, no ifs or buts. You come to a Muay Thai class its Muay Thai, no mixing. This was off-putting not because its all muay thai but because I asked before hand that if it is alright for me to mix my Karate. I wanted to make sure what the boundaries are and if they said " sorry but we keep a tight shift" I would have been alright. That being said, they are good and know what they are doing. I just wish told me this earlier. I like to think it was a misunderstanding between the manager and instructors.


But perhaps you are correct, I can take everything I learned and do few MMA matches as well as boxing. Let see what happens, I live in Canada and we are still in lockdown.
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