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GS718Trek
Orange Belt
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Joined: 08 Oct 2014
Posts: 152


PostPosted: Tue Jun 14, 2022 4:35 pm    Post subject: If Karate adopted the BJJ way of promoting Reply with quote

When it comes to BJJ, a pupil is promoted when the instructor believes he or she is ready and has demonstrated the necessary skills.
a single promotion can occur at any time, during class, or take a long time (years). There are no governing boards holding routine tests.

When I chat with partners, I always get the same response: "I'm just training to get better, and I don't care about rank."
But I can see right through them because it demonstrates that they are genuinely concerned about their position. Some I will never see again assuming they quit
It is well known that the majority of individuals stop at blue belt.
If people were truly passionate about their craft and only focused on improving, there would be far fewer people quitting after achieving that color

The color belts in both arts are the same (depending on org).
So, what makes people interested in BJJ?
It is physically unpleasant and takes a long time to progress.
It entails ground fighting, which is likely to be more uncommon than clashes that begin on the feet.
Of course, the two arts are apples and bananas, and one of them requires pressure testing as a part of every class(Karate has sparring of course)


What if the same concepts were applied to the Karate promotion system?
No kyu/dan exam board of 15 or more black belts, no routine gradings, and each student's progress was totally dependent on the dojo instructor.

Would this increase the quality of Karate?

Would it be as appealing to a younger, more fanatical audience as BJJ?
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LionsDen
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Joined: 06 May 2022
Posts: 177


PostPosted: Tue Jun 14, 2022 5:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Also BJJ has something going for it karate and other striking arts donít that make BJJ better for hobbyist in the modern world than karate.

You can learn to fight with a fairly low risk of any serious injury from class. You might end up with some bad joints when youíre 60 as a result of years of training, but you wonít have to worry about going to school or work with a black eye, or bruised ribs, or anything like that.
BJJ you can go more or less all out with a much lower risk of injury in class than you can do in karate or other striking arts

And i hope no one thinks I am poo pooing the idea. Itís not my cup of tea but if it appeals to other instructors I support their decision to run their dojo that way, and maybe for them it will make a difference.
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Tyler
Yellow Belt
Yellow Belt

Joined: 16 Mar 2022
Posts: 53
Location: Narita,Japan
Styles: Shorin-Ryu, Kobudo

PostPosted: Tue Jun 14, 2022 7:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree with the both of you!

In my Dojo. The children are drilled with respect and manners and they need that to learn discipline, technique and many are attending because their parents enforce it!

On the other hand some adults I often feel have terrible stances, core posture, power, timing footwork and breathing...........They sometimes are promoted because of the amount of time spent and basic understanding but in my opinion are undeserving.

They should make it when the Sensei........agrees that they have achieved a some what proper level they can be promoted

I dont believe in promotions unless they truly deserve it! therefore the Sensei, could promote them during the class. It would inspire others to step up their game and do more solo practice as that is one of the main components to effectiveness of the art they are practicing.
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sensei8
KF Sensei
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Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 15921
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Styles: Shindokan Saitou-ryu [Shuri-te/Okinawa-te based]

PostPosted: Tue Jun 14, 2022 8:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Change is inevitable, but not a good thing all of the time. Doing this and doing that when rank is concerned, as a marketing tool, just won't draw the masses to the doors. Rank is a Christmas tree with all kinds of things hanging from it so that whoever can feel better about something that's important to that person.

Can't see the forest for the trees.



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LionsDen
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Joined: 06 May 2022
Posts: 177


PostPosted: Tue Jun 14, 2022 8:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tyler wrote:
I agree with the both of you!

In my Dojo. The children are drilled with respect and manners and they need that to learn discipline, technique and many are attending because their parents enforce it!

On the other hand some adults I often feel have terrible stances, core posture, power, timing footwork and breathing...........They sometimes are promoted because of the amount of time spent and basic understanding but in my opinion are undeserving.

They should make it when the Sensei........agrees that they have achieved a some what proper level they can be promoted

I dont believe in promotions unless they truly deserve it! therefore the Sensei, could promote them during the class. It would inspire others to step up their game and do more solo practice as that is one of the main components to effectiveness of the art they are practicing.
if your sensei is promoting people you think are undeserving in regularly scheduled testings, why wouldnít they also just hand out promotions during class when they feel a student has been there enough?

Why would a promotion before during or after class inspire people any more than a promotion during a regularly scheduled testing class?

In my opinion whatever issues a dojo has with premature promotion will transfer over to random class promotions.

Also those promotions feel a little bit arbitrary in nature to me. Was the class a student was promoted the first time they displayed that level of performance and understanding? Or was the instructor watching to see if they maintain that level of performance and understanding? If they waited, then how long does one wait?
With regularly scheduled testing periods, the intervals may be arbitrarily chosen, but in the month or weeks leading up to the testing, students can be actively evaluated, and if theyíre deemed ready thereís a period to make sure the maintain that level of performance, and the testing itself is mostly a formality, some pomp and circumstance, which for some people makes the achievement feel more important and serious.

I have spent time today considering offering students the option between random in class promotions, and testings at regular intervals.
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Zaine
Black Belt
Black Belt

Joined: 31 Aug 2005
Posts: 2016
Location: Dallas, TX
Styles: Matsumura-Seito, Shobayashi-Ryu, Shudokan, Long Fist, American Street Karate, Southern Mantis, HEMA

PostPosted: Wed Jun 15, 2022 4:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Everyone is different. Passion waxes and wanes, and sometimes things that consumed us wholly fail to return. Sometimes, life happens, and we need to put aside hobbies for things that are more important to our survival. Perhaps they just needed to know enough to get them out of a fight, but have no real interest beyond that. People take what they want from things and move on, even those of us who are lifers. I'm not worried about people who stay for one rank and then leave, if we can't plan for turnover then our gyms will fail. Turnover is a fact of life for martial artists.

What makes people interested in BJJ? MMA, probably. UFC is still pretty huge. We have no small number of MMA organizations beside UFC like Bellator now. Those fights go to the ground and that's exciting to watch. To the untrained, if you watch a bunch of fights go to the ground regularly, you might have the impression that fights go to the ground regularly. Maybe they do, in 1v1 situations, I am thankfully ignorant of that in my personal life. However, the data tends to suggest otherwise. Either way, perception is reality. If the perception is an over valuation of being able to defend oneself on the ground, then that's where interest will follow. Who knows what's going to happen in the next decade. Maybe something like Karate Combat will hit big and people will flock to karate. Maybe a movie as influential as Karate Kid will come out and that boosts karate numbers as well. The future in unknowable.

Would changing the grading system of karate change to reflect what you've described increase quality? Probably not. To begin with, the instructors that decided a person is ready to test is still the same person. If they are okay with the quality of their dojo, then changing the testing structure isn't going to change the quality, just the bureaucracy. Increasing the quality of karate is not an obtainable goal. You can promote quality karate, highlight certain dojos, teach your students to a high standard, but for every you there will be a handful of people who aren't teaching a high standard of karate.

I'm not sure that's as big of a problem as we think it is. When it comes to teaching, our goal is to see improvement. If a white belt is trying their hardest, improving, though not at the rate someone else is, do we, as instructors, hold them at white until they are as ready as someone else was? I would argue that we promote them. Karate is a personal journey, and if they have improved enough and are still trying to improve then they deserve that 9th kyu rank, and I think this is true all the way up to black belt. Not every body needs to be a paragon of martial arts. Not everyone wants to be a paragon of martial arts. Are their techniques perfect? Who cares. Are their techniques better today than they were last time? That's what's important. We keep telling karateka that karate is about growth. We need to walk the walk if we're going to talk the talk.
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DarthPenguin
Blue Belt
Blue Belt

Joined: 03 Dec 2021
Posts: 315
Location: Glasgow, Scotland
Styles: Shotokan, Judo, BJJ

PostPosted: Wed Jun 15, 2022 5:35 am    Post subject: Re: If Karate adopted the BJJ way of promoting Reply with quote

GS718Trek wrote:
When it comes to BJJ, a pupil is promoted when the instructor believes he or she is ready and has demonstrated the necessary skills.
a single promotion can occur at any time, during class, or take a long time (years). There are no governing boards holding routine tests.

When I chat with partners, I always get the same response: "I'm just training to get better, and I don't care about rank."
But I can see right through them because it demonstrates that they are genuinely concerned about their position. Some I will never see again assuming they quit
It is well known that the majority of individuals stop at blue belt.
If people were truly passionate about their craft and only focused on improving, there would be far fewer people quitting after achieving that color

The color belts in both arts are the same (depending on org).
So, what makes people interested in BJJ?
It is physically unpleasant and takes a long time to progress.
It entails ground fighting, which is likely to be more uncommon than clashes that begin on the feet.
Of course, the two arts are apples and bananas, and one of them requires pressure testing as a part of every class(Karate has sparring of course)


What if the same concepts were applied to the Karate promotion system?
No kyu/dan exam board of 15 or more black belts, no routine gradings, and each student's progress was totally dependent on the dojo instructor.

Would this increase the quality of Karate?

Would it be as appealing to a younger, more fanatical audience as BJJ?


One part you have missed from the promotion system here that makes it a little more complex is the lineage aspect. People don't say they are a X Belt; they say they are an X Belt under Person Y who is under Professor Z.

This does lead to a divergence in standards a little but it also means people have an idea still of someones level e.g. I always used to hear people talk about Cesar Gracie being notoriously hard to grade under; Saulo Ribeiro used to make a lot of higher grades put a white belt back on unless they had trained under a Gracie directly or a student that had directly trained under them.

I'm not sure if it would work with karate nowadays since there are so many people who do train/have trained and claim rank. BJJ system worked since it was a much smaller art and it grew with the system remaining in place. I can't see how you would implement it now : eg a lot of karateka train under one Instructor but have a different Grading Examiner. This is different from the usual BJJ model where the instructor awards the belts (Sometimes they check in with their own instructor for permission when awarding senior belts).

You also cannot typically map a BJJ grade to a karate or other style grade as the levels and requirements are totally different. A BJJ BB doesn't really get assessed again once it has been achieved (degrees are time based) and it usually takes a skilled practitioner 10-12 years to achieve. This is closer to the time for someone to get to a 3rd dan or so in karate etc.

Personally i think it would be good to see people making a bigger deal about their lineage in karate; it would hopefully help to raise standards etc but i doubt it will happen tbh
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LionsDen
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Joined: 06 May 2022
Posts: 177


PostPosted: Wed Jun 15, 2022 8:56 am    Post subject: Re: If Karate adopted the BJJ way of promoting Reply with quote

DarthPenguin wrote:
GS718Trek wrote:
When it comes to BJJ, a pupil is promoted when the instructor believes he or she is ready and has demonstrated the necessary skills.
a single promotion can occur at any time, during class, or take a long time (years). There are no governing boards holding routine tests.

When I chat with partners, I always get the same response: "I'm just training to get better, and I don't care about rank."
But I can see right through them because it demonstrates that they are genuinely concerned about their position. Some I will never see again assuming they quit
It is well known that the majority of individuals stop at blue belt.
If people were truly passionate about their craft and only focused on improving, there would be far fewer people quitting after achieving that color

The color belts in both arts are the same (depending on org).
So, what makes people interested in BJJ?
It is physically unpleasant and takes a long time to progress.
It entails ground fighting, which is likely to be more uncommon than clashes that begin on the feet.
Of course, the two arts are apples and bananas, and one of them requires pressure testing as a part of every class(Karate has sparring of course)


What if the same concepts were applied to the Karate promotion system?
No kyu/dan exam board of 15 or more black belts, no routine gradings, and each student's progress was totally dependent on the dojo instructor.

Would this increase the quality of Karate?

Would it be as appealing to a younger, more fanatical audience as BJJ?


One part you have missed from the promotion system here that makes it a little more complex is the lineage aspect. People don't say they are a X Belt; they say they are an X Belt under Person Y who is under Professor Z.

This does lead to a divergence in standards a little but it also means people have an idea still of someones level e.g. I always used to hear people talk about Cesar Gracie being notoriously hard to grade under; Saulo Ribeiro used to make a lot of higher grades put a white belt back on unless they had trained under a Gracie directly or a student that had directly trained under them.

I'm not sure if it would work with karate nowadays since there are so many people who do train/have trained and claim rank. BJJ system worked since it was a much smaller art and it grew with the system remaining in place. I can't see how you would implement it now : eg a lot of karateka train under one Instructor but have a different Grading Examiner. This is different from the usual BJJ model where the instructor awards the belts (Sometimes they check in with their own instructor for permission when awarding senior belts).

You also cannot typically map a BJJ grade to a karate or other style grade as the levels and requirements are totally different. A BJJ BB doesn't really get assessed again once it has been achieved (degrees are time based) and it usually takes a skilled practitioner 10-12 years to achieve. This is closer to the time for someone to get to a 3rd dan or so in karate etc.

Personally i think it would be good to see people making a bigger deal about their lineage in karate; it would hopefully help to raise standards etc but i doubt it will happen tbh
lineage makes a difference in BJJ largely because competition is baked into the culture of BJJ, and itís competition where people go 100%, so you can see an instructorís record, you can see the records of their students, etc.
In karate most competition is light contact, and verifying a record for someone who hasnít competed in a regional or national level competition in karate is pretty difficult.
I can give you my lineage, 100% honest and 99% of it is pretty impressive, but my direct instructor has nothing but a belt and time training/teaching to his name that would seem impressive.
On the other hand I could give you my lineage and leave out my direct instructor and simply stop at the hombu instructors who I have worked with regularly over the years to inflate myself a little bit.

Likewise the level of karate competition I did was state level, but I canít even find records of my gold medal now, that itís been well over a decadeÖand does any one outside the karate community really even care I was a point fighting champion? Probably not.
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DarthPenguin
Blue Belt
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Joined: 03 Dec 2021
Posts: 315
Location: Glasgow, Scotland
Styles: Shotokan, Judo, BJJ

PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2022 3:03 am    Post subject: Re: If Karate adopted the BJJ way of promoting Reply with quote

LionsDen wrote:
DarthPenguin wrote:
GS718Trek wrote:
When it comes to BJJ, a pupil is promoted when the instructor believes he or she is ready and has demonstrated the necessary skills.
a single promotion can occur at any time, during class, or take a long time (years). There are no governing boards holding routine tests.

When I chat with partners, I always get the same response: "I'm just training to get better, and I don't care about rank."
But I can see right through them because it demonstrates that they are genuinely concerned about their position. Some I will never see again assuming they quit
It is well known that the majority of individuals stop at blue belt.
If people were truly passionate about their craft and only focused on improving, there would be far fewer people quitting after achieving that color

The color belts in both arts are the same (depending on org).
So, what makes people interested in BJJ?
It is physically unpleasant and takes a long time to progress.
It entails ground fighting, which is likely to be more uncommon than clashes that begin on the feet.
Of course, the two arts are apples and bananas, and one of them requires pressure testing as a part of every class(Karate has sparring of course)


What if the same concepts were applied to the Karate promotion system?
No kyu/dan exam board of 15 or more black belts, no routine gradings, and each student's progress was totally dependent on the dojo instructor.

Would this increase the quality of Karate?

Would it be as appealing to a younger, more fanatical audience as BJJ?


One part you have missed from the promotion system here that makes it a little more complex is the lineage aspect. People don't say they are a X Belt; they say they are an X Belt under Person Y who is under Professor Z.

This does lead to a divergence in standards a little but it also means people have an idea still of someones level e.g. I always used to hear people talk about Cesar Gracie being notoriously hard to grade under; Saulo Ribeiro used to make a lot of higher grades put a white belt back on unless they had trained under a Gracie directly or a student that had directly trained under them.

I'm not sure if it would work with karate nowadays since there are so many people who do train/have trained and claim rank. BJJ system worked since it was a much smaller art and it grew with the system remaining in place. I can't see how you would implement it now : eg a lot of karateka train under one Instructor but have a different Grading Examiner. This is different from the usual BJJ model where the instructor awards the belts (Sometimes they check in with their own instructor for permission when awarding senior belts).

You also cannot typically map a BJJ grade to a karate or other style grade as the levels and requirements are totally different. A BJJ BB doesn't really get assessed again once it has been achieved (degrees are time based) and it usually takes a skilled practitioner 10-12 years to achieve. This is closer to the time for someone to get to a 3rd dan or so in karate etc.

Personally i think it would be good to see people making a bigger deal about their lineage in karate; it would hopefully help to raise standards etc but i doubt it will happen tbh
lineage makes a difference in BJJ largely because competition is baked into the culture of BJJ, and itís competition where people go 100%, so you can see an instructorís record, you can see the records of their students, etc.
In karate most competition is light contact, and verifying a record for someone who hasnít competed in a regional or national level competition in karate is pretty difficult.
I can give you my lineage, 100% honest and 99% of it is pretty impressive, but my direct instructor has nothing but a belt and time training/teaching to his name that would seem impressive.
On the other hand I could give you my lineage and leave out my direct instructor and simply stop at the hombu instructors who I have worked with regularly over the years to inflate myself a little bit.

Likewise the level of karate competition I did was state level, but I canít even find records of my gold medal now, that itís been well over a decadeÖand does any one outside the karate community really even care I was a point fighting champion? Probably not.


Thats a fair point. Even if someone isn't an active competitor in BJJ people can still look at the record of their instructor and the other people at the gym to get an idea of the overall standard. Wouldn't be viable for karate really
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LionsDen
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Joined: 06 May 2022
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2022 7:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

long story short, karate has become too big for any changes to realistically be instituted on a large scale, and too many people have found out what makes them a lot of money teaching karate, making any changes almost impossible to be universally accepted regardless of how much in increases quality of training.

many adults treat karate like tai chi.
many kids are signed up for karate, as a form of daycare.
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