6 year old first dan??? whiskey tango foxtrot!

Discussion in 'General Martial Arts Talk' started by TSDTexan, May 7, 2019.

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  1. TSDTexan

    TSDTexan Master of Arts

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    what in the world is going on?

    because she can do 40 moves, and correctly answered a written test on human anatomy... she gets a 1st dan at 6 years old?

    6-year-old becomes youngest schoolgirl in UK to be 1st dan karate black belt

    my biggest issue... is that a dan needs to understand a lot more then 40 techniques and answer test questions on anatomy.

    a dan should have a basic level of mastery. Which looking at the video.... she doesn't. Secondly, a dan in two years... is highly suspect.

    Thirdly, there is a basic level of maturity that i believe a dan should have. being able to understand what elements lead to a fight, and how to avoid a fight in the first place. ( stuff like de-escalation, threat awareness, conflict resolution, verbal communication skills... which a 6 year old does not possess yet)

    i have been pondering this specific case in England. The whole thing is a blight on traditional MA.
     
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  2. mograph

    mograph Master Black Belt

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    Child + black belt = meaningless.

    McDojo.
     
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  3. skribs

    skribs Senior Master

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    This is pretty close to fraud-busting, which I don't think we're supposed to do here.

    One thing I notice is that she's outside on the grass, wearing shoes. That change in traction compared with practicing inside on a mat or on a hard floor can really change how you do some of the moves. We also don't know if that was a clip of her demonstrating the best of her abilities, or just messing around.

    Regardless, what a black belt is, is different from school to school. For example, your third point of understanding what elements lead to a fight and how to avoid them, is not a requirement at my TKD school, and it wasn't a requirement at my old school. I think it's a good skill to know, but it typically falls outside the scope of the curriculum. A 1st Dan at my old TKD school took people longer to obtain than at my current school, and a 1st Dan in BJJ takes a lot longer than most other arts. What a "dan" means is up to the organization that certifies it.

    Now, do I think it's a McDojo? Yes. Based on what I've seen, does it appear she should be a black belt? No. But these are my opinions, based on very little fact.
     
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  4. jobo

    jobo Grandmaster

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    your just annoyed as you failed a minor belt and this young child has suprised your achievements, cant you just be happy for her,
     
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  5. CB Jones

    CB Jones Senior Master

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    I see and agree with your point.....but their school....they can rank them how they want I guess.
     
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  6. Yokozuna514

    Yokozuna514 Purple Belt

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    Unfortunately, there are millions of examples of people that have black belts not worth the cost of the cloth around their waist. It is pointless to berate them or the schools they belong to. It will drive you nuts if you let it.

    Cubic zirconia may fool some people that they diamonds but they are most certainly not diamonds. They are cheaper and more abundant but I don't know anyone that prefers them to the real thing.
     
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  7. jobo

    jobo Grandmaster

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    well no, I'd suspect that they would fool most people outside the jewellery business, and cz is not at all abundant, its manufactured. diamonds value is not as a result if its scarcity, it's as a result of market manipulation and price fixing. lots of people prefer cz because of the numerous civil rights abuses in the diamond mining industry, particularly blood and conflict diamonds, uts the ethical choice if all you want is something shiny, if your never going to sell it, it's rather pointless spending on artificially high priced stones, not quite as good at cutting things though
     
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  8. TSDTexan

    TSDTexan Master of Arts

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    funny man.
    in tsd karate i am a third dan. and this has 0 to do with me. at least they could waited until she was older to give her a dan.
     
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  9. jobo

    jobo Grandmaster

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    why, she has dedicated a third of her life to ma, she is just as worthy of high rank as all the old fat men strutting about with a black belt on, that can no longer even come close to reaching the testing standard,

    if your going to set an arbitrary level of bb or Dans then it has to apply to all,

    I put forward the idea, that decrepitude should mean demotion, that made several ( presumably past there best) posters quite cross
     
    Last edited: May 7, 2019
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  10. Martial D

    Martial D Senior Master

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    Meh. Legend has it that a black belt used to mean something.

    It still can, but not always. The thing is, most people can be lazy, in the sense that they will take the shortest route to the goal, while many are expoitative, in that they will take advantage of folks for a profit.

    When you consider these two facts through the lense of martial arts, you will see a lot of mcblackbelts as the result.
     
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  11. Jaeimseu

    Jaeimseu 2nd Black Belt

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    My opinion has changed on this issue as I have matured. Putting a black belt on a child doesn’t affect me at all. If a student meets a school’s requirements for black belt, give them a black belt. Who cares? If it devalues the training you (general you) have put in, that’s on you (general you).


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  12. gpseymour

    gpseymour MT Moderator Staff Member

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    I used to get worked up about what I called “belt mills”. I also got quite proud of my own rank. I do less of both these days.
     
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  13. Rat

    Rat Brown Belt

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    It depends if you have the view the children circulem is comparative to the adults one. If you don't, all a black belt would denote is top of that particular level.

    Personally speaking i dont know if they should do that or not and just award a different belt or something for it.

    Actually has me wondering of what they used to do with children and such for the styles which have a quite ridged belt structure historically. Given a lot of these are considered and endorsed as life pursuits and there was a generation and still is of people who did it from a child to death.

    I presume it might have been going over the basics until you could get the first belt, then going through them. say 10-death.

    Edit: apart from belts not being that important and being viewed differently historically.
     
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  14. wab25

    wab25 Brown Belt

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    I say, good for her!!! I hope she keeps training. She started something at 4 years old and stuck with it for two years, she found out the requirements for something she wanted and she went out and did them. I am impressed that a 6 year old has stuck with something for 2 years.

    Now, would I go study at that school? No. The UK is a heck of a drive from Florida...

    Honestly though, others have already mentioned: their school, their requirements. But think about it, what does my belt mean to you? My own personal rank in Danzan Ryu Jujitsu... what does that mean to you? Do I know the first thing about your art? Where would I start training in your art? I know many here try to be polite, but in reality, my rank in DZR means just as much to your art as her rank means to your art and to you. The converse is also true. Your rank means the same as hers does, to a different school or different art.

    This is why I get irritated by folks pulling rank over each other. The color of your thingy compared to the color of my thingy means nothing. How many stripes you have and where you put them mean nothing.

    The only thing that matters is that you train. Not that you once trained... or that you could train... or that you will train... It matters that you train, now. As long as you get out on the floor, and train to the best of your ability, you are humble enough to learn and improve and you are kind enough to share what you have learned with others. I have yet to be on the floor with someone that I could not learn from, regardless of their colors or stripes or patches...

    Good for her! I hope she continues to train.
     
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  15. TSDTexan

    TSDTexan Master of Arts

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    there is a thing that has been around a while.. Jr. Blackbelt. I would rather agree with awarding a jr. bb than assigning the 1st dan designation.

    the article acts as if she is the first 6 year old 1st dan bb in the UK. I would disagree with that equivalence of what she was given with the idea of what Yudansha means.
     
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  16. TSDTexan

    TSDTexan Master of Arts

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    i am happy she is training. i hope she continues for a while... or perhaps the rest of her life.

    i agree we should all learn from each other regardless of where others are at in the curriculum with regard to our own journey in the same curriculum.

    i just have a problem with this. I have been around a while, and I understand what karate became when it first accepted the dan system in Japan.

    it just seems like people are playing fast and loose with terms they really dont understand.

    its almost an insult or an affront to the history and tradition of karate. and it cheapens something that should be honored and respected more than this.

    but this is just my opinion.
     
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  17. Buka

    Buka MT Moderator Staff Member

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    I know she's just a little kid, a baby, but I've been been around a lot of kids in Martial Arts. She might possibly have the worst technique I've ever seen.

    I don't find it cute, I find it very sad.
     
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  18. Jaeimseu

    Jaeimseu 2nd Black Belt

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    I hear lots of people say that child black belts “cheapen” something, but what do you feel is really cheapened (outside of your own mind)? I don’t think anyone is equating the ability of a 6 year old black belt with that of an adult black belt. And I don’t think the majority of non-martial artists care about anyone’s black belt.

    Having said that, I’m personally not a fan of belt mills. I use a poom (junior black belt) for kids in my school. I will say that I have seen many kid black belts over the years that had far better technique than adults with the same amount of training.


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  19. DocWard

    DocWard Blue Belt

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    I have pondered this for a few since reading the original post, along with the responses. Most of the comments I've found thoughtful and with merit, even if I am unsure whether I agree with them.

    Yes, I am happy she is training, and that she has committed the time to it she has. That is somewhat rare for a child her age, and it does make me wonder how much her parents pressed her to continue.

    As for the cheapening of something that should be honored and respected, I am keenly aware of how that happens constantly, in numerous areas beyond the realm of martial arts. From my perspective, if the requirements met were those put forth at the beginning of training, and not modified to take account for her level of physical and mental maturity, then I will accept that she has achieved dan rank at that school. If those running the school are OK with it for their school and system, I will not judge.

    Does this mean she should be recognized as holding dan rank elsewhere? I don't know. I personally would struggle accepting her lining up with black belts at a seminar or such, knowing 40 techniques learned over two years, when there are lesser belts with a much more in-depth knowledge and understanding in their chosen systems, and much more time in training.

    I feel compelled to stress that when I say taking account of her maturity, I mean just that. I have no problems with modifying curricula for people with specific impediments, regardless of age. In my opinion, doing so can be meaningful and helpful in those cases.
     
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  20. Headhunter

    Headhunter Senior Master

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    They can but I think it's very obvious to everyone if she's a legit one or not
     
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