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Theochh
White Belt
White Belt

Joined: 26 Jul 2019
Posts: 2


PostPosted: Sat Jul 27, 2019 5:42 am    Post subject: Once a Shodan Reply with quote

Hi All

I would love to hear your thoughts and opinions on the following.

At the age of 18 I achieved the grade of 1st Dan in Shotokan karate. I had been training for approx 6-7 years. I then stopped training, not because I fell out of love with karate but life in general changes things.

Now at the young age of 46 I want to get back into it. Iíve been to a couple of different clubs (in a white belt) and the Senseis have been impressed with my ability to perform basics and the way I have been able to recall katas. My form, timing and power are all there but sadly Iím less flexible.

Whatís the general consensus regarding the following questions:-

1. Continue to train and start from scratch, take the full term and grade each belt?
2. Enquire about an accelerated grading program and regrade for my black belt sooner rather than later?

Thanks for taking the time to read this.

PS- great forum ďkarateforumsĒ
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sensei8
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 14406
Location: Houston, TX
Styles: Shindokan Saitou-ryu [Shuri-te/Okinawa-te based]

PostPosted: Sat Jul 27, 2019 10:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Welcome to KF, Theochh; glad that you're here!!

What does your heart tell you?? Accept that which your heart expresses, and go with your heart!!

Are you wanting to continue in Shotokan??
Are you wanting to rejoin your last governing body??

If, of course, you're wanting to start in a completely different MA, then joining as a white belt/beginner is the right thing to do. I seriously believe, from what I've gathered from your OP, that rank means absolutely nothing to you, and in that, knowledge and experience are paramount to your MA journey.

Flexibility will return, but in its own time; I'd not ever rush that, and that's the smart thing.

So, if you've selected the dojo you want to join, then what I'd suggest to you is that you go speak to that dojo's CI, and then decide from there!!

In the options that you've noted in your OP, I'd say this about them...

Quote:
1. Continue to train and start from scratch, take the full term and grade each belt?

Only if you're not continuing in Shotokan training. However, if you're continuing in Shotokan training, then no!! Whenever any Shindokanist returns, and they've already earned a Shodan or above in Shindokan, and they've been away for any amount of time, one, they will continue to wear their black belt because, once a black belt, always a black belt; they earned it. Albeit, they'll not be invited to any Testing Cycles for advancement, but only Testing Cycles to bring them back to the their appropriate level, and then be invited to the Testing Cycle for that Shodan or above.

Quote:
2. Enquire about an accelerated grading program and regrade for my black belt sooner rather than later?

I'm not fond of this because it speaks more about the importance of rank, and not the importance of increasing knowledge and experience for ones MA betterment. This also speaks of impatience and immaturity in the MAist, which should never be the hallmark of any MAist.

You've gotten off the horse for solid reasons, so, just get make on the horse. Once you're back on the horse, things will improve as you knock off all of the dust and rust, and you start polishing.

Quote:
the Senseis have been impressed with my ability to perform basics and the way I have been able to recall katas. My form, timing and power are all there but sadly Iím less flexible.

There, right there, speaks in volumes that your muscle memory is STILL IN TACT, and hasn't left you!! Sure, dust and rust will be evident, but will fade away in time, however long that might be. Flexibility will also return!! After all, you've no longer that young whippersnapper whatsoever.

Patience shall be your ally in your returning to the floor; proof is on the floor!!

Train hard and train well!!






EDIT: Spelling and grammar
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Last edited by sensei8 on Mon Jul 29, 2019 1:51 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Fat Cobra
Orange Belt
Orange Belt

Joined: 14 Jul 2018
Posts: 166
Location: Fort Drum, NY
Styles: Ryukyu Kempo

PostPosted: Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree with Sensei8's comments.
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bushido_man96
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 31 Mar 2006
Posts: 27760
Location: Hays, KS
Styles: Taekwondo, Combat Hapkido, Aikido, GRACIE

PostPosted: Mon Jul 29, 2019 12:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fat Cobra wrote:
I agree with Sensei8's comments.
I do as well. Those are all spot-on points.

I've been in your position, although with not as many years off. I was rather consistent in training, but found myself changing schools, leading to a similar situation.

I was a 2nd dan black belt and certified instructor in one style of TKD, and moved to another. I spoke to the instructor about my prior experiences and rank. His school was a different style, with a totally different curriculum. What the instructor did was bring me on as a white belt, and then evaluated me as I went along. After my first testing, I was graded to low green belt, which was four ranks higher. This was awesome, and made me feel like the instructor trusted in what I had done previously. At the next testing, I jumped another two ranks, but I had to spend the previous testing cycle learning three new forms, and three sets of one-steps. So, after that testing, I requested that I only advance one rank per testing cycle from then on, that way I could make sure to give the attention that was due to the curriculum. From then on, I moved forward like every other student did.

The main takeaway for me through all this was that the one thing that I kept as the sole focus was training. My goal is to train in the Martial Arts, not necessarily to test or hold a certain rank. As long as I'm training, and improving myself, then I'm doing what I need to do. The ranks and the testings will all come when they do.

So, the point of it all is this; you must determine what is important to you. Is it rank? Is it the fact that you know you attained a black belt rank, and want to be acknowledged as such? Or, are you solely interested in perpetuating your MA training? You have to answer that question for yourself.

I knew what I had attained, I knew what I was capable of, and I knew in my heart that no matter what rank someone chose to put around my waist, it didn't change what I had already learned and earned. Alongside that, I knew that it was up to the instructor as to what my progression was going to be, so I let it be.

Hopefully this helps you out. Remember, it's all about the journey.
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http://www.sunyis.com/
www.aikidoofnorthwestkansas.com
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sensei8
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 14406
Location: Houston, TX
Styles: Shindokan Saitou-ryu [Shuri-te/Okinawa-te based]

PostPosted: Mon Jul 29, 2019 1:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

bushido_man96 wrote:
Fat Cobra wrote:
I agree with Sensei8's comments.
I do as well. Those are all spot-on points.

I've been in your position, although with not as many years off. I was rather consistent in training, but found myself changing schools, leading to a similar situation.

I was a 2nd dan black belt and certified instructor in one style of TKD, and moved to another. I spoke to the instructor about my prior experiences and rank. His school was a different style, with a totally different curriculum. What the instructor did was bring me on as a white belt, and then evaluated me as I went along. After my first testing, I was graded to low green belt, which was four ranks higher. This was awesome, and made me feel like the instructor trusted in what I had done previously. At the next testing, I jumped another two ranks, but I had to spend the previous testing cycle learning three new forms, and three sets of one-steps. So, after that testing, I requested that I only advance one rank per testing cycle from then on, that way I could make sure to give the attention that was due to the curriculum. From then on, I moved forward like every other student did.

The main takeaway for me through all this was that the one thing that I kept as the sole focus was training. My goal is to train in the Martial Arts, not necessarily to test or hold a certain rank. As long as I'm training, and improving myself, then I'm doing what I need to do. The ranks and the testings will all come when they do.

So, the point of it all is this; you must determine what is important to you. Is it rank? Is it the fact that you know you attained a black belt rank, and want to be acknowledged as such? Or, are you solely interested in perpetuating your MA training? You have to answer that question for yourself.

I knew what I had attained, I knew what I was capable of, and I knew in my heart that no matter what rank someone chose to put around my waist, it didn't change what I had already learned and earned. Alongside that, I knew that it was up to the instructor as to what my progression was going to be, so I let it be.

Hopefully this helps you out. Remember, it's all about the journey.

Solid post!!



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Theochh
White Belt
White Belt

Joined: 26 Jul 2019
Posts: 2


PostPosted: Tue Jul 30, 2019 9:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sensei8 and bushido_man96

Thank you so much for your thoughts and guidance on this. Itís great to hear other peopleís perspectives on things. Inspired me to look at it from a different angle.

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sensei8
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 14406
Location: Houston, TX
Styles: Shindokan Saitou-ryu [Shuri-te/Okinawa-te based]

PostPosted: Tue Jul 30, 2019 6:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Theochh wrote:
Sensei8 and bushido_man96

Thank you so much for your thoughts and guidance on this. Itís great to hear other peopleís perspectives on things. Inspired me to look at it from a different angle.


You're more than welcome; we got your back!!

Train hard and train well!!




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bushido_man96
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 31 Mar 2006
Posts: 27760
Location: Hays, KS
Styles: Taekwondo, Combat Hapkido, Aikido, GRACIE

PostPosted: Mon Aug 05, 2019 10:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

sensei8 wrote:
Theochh wrote:
Sensei8 and bushido_man96

Thank you so much for your thoughts and guidance on this. Itís great to hear other peopleís perspectives on things. Inspired me to look at it from a different angle.


You're more than welcome; we got your back!!

Train hard and train well!!



Agreed! Hopefully it helps!
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http://www.sunyis.com/
www.aikidoofnorthwestkansas.com
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