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. Headhunter

    Headhunter Senior Master

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    But hey I'm sure her mummy paid the instructor a nice amount of money for it
     
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  2. Headhunter

    Headhunter Senior Master

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    This is why there should be no kid black belts no one under the age of 18 should be given a black belt. I've always believed it and always will. I've never seen any kid black belt who I genuinely believe deserves to be called a black belt. Plus being a black belt is more than just doing the moves
     
  3. Headhunter

    Headhunter Senior Master

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    Good for her but shame on the instructor
     
  4. Headhunter

    Headhunter Senior Master

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    Agreed.

    Side note. as soon as I saw you had a disagree I guessed immediately who it was lol
     
  5. Monkey Turned Wolf

    Monkey Turned Wolf MT Moderator Staff Member

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    Im pretty sure its a result of rushing through all the material by 6. If she had learned a few punches, a front kick and a side kick, they might actually look okay.
     
  6. Monkey Turned Wolf

    Monkey Turned Wolf MT Moderator Staff Member

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    It depends on what you're considering a child. A 6 year old and 17 year old are two entirely different things
     
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  7. Tez3

    Tez3 Sr. Grandmaster

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    I looked at the article and stopped reading when I found out where it was. It's in Tyneside, that answers everything but I'm not sure how to explain it other than it's a no man's land of despair, drugs, gangs and unemployment where what she's done is certainly more than amazing, elsewhere not so much.

    I can't agree that a 6 year old black belt is right but I can see why they need it, it's one very small light in a socially deprived area with nothing but despair.


    I'd go, if they can keep a club going in that place they are going to be good.
     
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  8. Tez3

    Tez3 Sr. Grandmaster

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    Not where that club is she won't. Mum will be going off to the shop in her nightclothes to cash her giro.
     
  9. mograph

    mograph Master Black Belt

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    Sure -- let's go for prepubescent. Before adolescence.

    As for meaningless, I mean inter-dojo, across the art as a whole. Within one dojo, it might have meaning, but across dojos, it has lost meaning. The problem is that average people still think that a black belt has meaning across dojos: that it denotes an absolute level of skill, rather than one that is relative to the dojo, and wildly inconsistent.

    But to be fair, experienced martial artists (here. at least) understand that a black belt has no meaning without knowing which dojo granted the belt. The meaning is assigned when it is associated with the relevant belt-granting dojo.
    It's like a college degree, to a certain extent: the school matters.
     
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  10. drop bear

    drop bear Sr. Grandmaster

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    Many martial artists defend the standard of no standard. And so ultimately support this. If you want to demonstrate effective techniques or competent martial artists it really has to be against resistance.
     
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  11. drop bear

    drop bear Sr. Grandmaster

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    I have seen champion fighters who were under 18.
     
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  12. gpseymour

    gpseymour MT Moderator Staff Member

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    Belts are a fairly new innovation, historically speaking.
     
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  13. Rat

    Rat Master Black Belt

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    Yeah i can still get behind giving them a belt or a rank to say they completed a child's circulem but then you might consider using a different ranking system to denote its a children's one.

    I wouldn't put it under 18, but i would definitely say you haven't been doing it long enough to get what a black belt denotes under 12. But if you are particularly savvy in the way of your style, you could be deserving of it before 18, out of principle i wouldn't go earlier than 16 maybe late 15 pending case. After all if you starter proper at 5, thats 10 years of actual training, even if a portion of that was limited. As far as i know you could get a working fundamental/basics knowledge of your style around 16-20 pending what time you started if yous tarted in the younger bracket. As far as i know for a black belt thats deemed mastery of the basics enough to come to perfect them and their usage and change them to suit yourself. I think anyway, or something like that. If you kind of meet that criteria, you do when you do, someone else does when they do. Pretty arbitrary classification TBF. Not to say i think a 6 year old should get the same classification of a 20 year old who has been doing it since they were 5.
     
  14. gpseymour

    gpseymour MT Moderator Staff Member

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    I don't have dan ranking in my curriculum, at all, because I don't see a lot of point in it. But others do. I'm not sure why that word matters more than the color of the belt. Both are meant to indicate something specific for that school.

    As for youth ranks, I favor them, just because it helps the kids have perspective on what their splash of color means. In the NGAA, the youth ranks aren't even the same curriculum, so don't mean anything like what the adult ranks mean, and I favor using the white-banded belts to make it easy to see the difference...because the kids have to go backwards if you only look at the color (from youth yellow to blue to green, then to adult yellow...).

    Personally, I wouldn't award small kids the same rank as adults, ever. I just don't think it can mean the same thing in both cases. But that's me, and some folks disagree. I can't figure any way my opinion matters more to the world than theirs.
     
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  15. skribs

    skribs Grandmaster

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    I find the opposite to be true. To the uninitiated, the black belt is the supreme master of the martial arts. I've had a lot of new students (and especially their parents) think that you're a Master at black belt level. I'm a 3rd Dan and I'm still a couple away from being a Master.

    Some people think that the black belt means you are absolutely perfect and know everything about the art. A lot of parents think once their kid gets their black belt that they're done. Like an achievement medal, and onto the next activity. Most martial artists know that it's just a stepping stone, a path in your journey. That a black belt is merely an advanced student (and the level of that advancement is up to the Master or organization that promoted them).

    Several years ago, before I started back at Taekwondo, I watched Ip Man, the scene where Donnie Yen takes on 10 black belts and just destroys them. It's one of my favorite fight scenes in any movie, particularly because there's a part where he's actually fighting 4 guys at once (instead of just a bunch of 1-on-1 fights in rapid succession). Now, I'm nowhere near as good as Donnie Yen or Ip Man, but I could see myself going against a group of black belts with the same level of skill and tactics they had, and at least having a chance of being victorious. And not because I'm arrogant or I believe I'd win (there would be a very slim margin of error, especially if they actually worked well as a team and had a good strategy to corner me), but because I know the limitations of a 1st degree black belt and how to exploit them.
     
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  16. gpseymour

    gpseymour MT Moderator Staff Member

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    I've seen some folks in their teens who were better martial artists than I was in my early 30's (when I got my BB). I won't award a BB before age 18 at present, but I also won't teach anyone under 13 at present, so it's a safe bet nobody's likely to get to BB before 20 or so.
     
  17. Rat

    Rat Master Black Belt

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    Not something i have looked into that well, all i know is without a specific belt structure (which does the same thing just in a official manner) you would just group people up based on seniority and thus implied knowledge and ability and actual ability/knowledge. Has its pros and cons i must say.

    I would go out on a limb and say karate and maybe kung fu started the trend of belts? And i think modern karate is relatively knew around the 1890's-1950's?

    By all means correct me if i am wrong, im iffy on my historical knowledge on the styles and their inner workings.
     
  18. Danny T

    Danny T Senior Master

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    So when Kano began utilizing the Black Belt do you know what the criteria for it was?
     
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  19. skribs

    skribs Grandmaster

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    Let's say you started taking the fictional Skribs Kwon Do twenty years ago. It's the best martial art ever, in my completely unbiased opinion. It took you 15 years to earn your black belt. You were the third black belt ever in the art, after me (the founder) and my first student. 15 long years, in which you had to learn everything under the sun, including groundfighting, take-downs, seventeen different clinches, joint locks, joint breaks, pressure points, a hundred striking combinations, and a dozen forms. Your black belt test had a fitness portion that would rival the NFL combine, three full days on techniques and concepts, and enough written essays on training, teaching, and self defense law to satisfy a triple major in bio-engineering, education, and criminal law.

    Now, 20 years after you started, and 5 years after you go through all of this, I take a 5 year old student who has been training with me for 3 months, I give her a test that consists of 5 punches, 3 kicks, and breaking a piece of balsa wood, and she gets her black belt!

    On the one hand, you still have all of the other stuff - the knowledge, the fitness, and the technique. That's what you care about, that's what others will care about when they see your technique.

    On the other hand, if Gerry is looking for a school to take his daughter to, and he sees that you're a 1st degree black belt in Skribs Kwon Do, and then looks up a video on Skribs Kwon Do and sees a 5-year-old 1st degree who knows 8 techniques, he's going to wonder what you can teach her.

    This is what the cheapening of the black belt means. (And yes, the story is super-exaggerated to highlight my point). It doesn't mean anything for you, until it does. It doesn't affect you, until the reputation catches up to you. Even worse, if this girl can get her black belt in 3 months, why did it take you 15 years?

    Another way of looking at it is the opposite of power creep in TV and video games. There's a show I love (and actually started watching it because someone in my TKD class recommended it) called Supernatural. There are some monsters in the first few seasons that are incredibly difficult for the heroes to fight. They may spend an entire episode on one of these monsters, and it's something that has them scared witless the entire episode.

    In the later seasons, there may be a dozen of these monsters, which are supercharged by some magical beast, and they're just cannon fodder to be mowed through like lawn gnomes. They're no longer scary, and there's no real impact.

    It's kind of the same effect. If a black belt is really difficult to earn, and has very stringent guidelines on how to earn it, a black belt is something that generates a healthy fear and admiration. But if a black belt is basically a participation trophy, then the reaction is "meh". And even if you had to go through those stringent guidelines, people see it through the lens of "meh" because of what they've seen others have to go through to get their belt.
     
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  20. Steve

    Steve Mostly Harmless

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    Okay. Well, I think she’s cute as a button, and like others, I’m glad she’s training. She seems to enjoy it, though at 6 her technique looks pretty much like I’d expect it to. I hope she keeps training. I notice that her school purports to be an MMA gym. I hope that the school is an actual MMA gym where, at some point, if she keeps at it, she’ll learn to do real stuff.

    Regarding her rank, I don’t see a lot of difference between her and other black belts in other schools or systems. If the belt isn’t tied to some objective standard for performance, it’s really just a warm fuzzy anyway. Not too worried about it.

    What I think is potentially alarming here is that no one seems to be calibrating the difference between what she believes to be true regarding her performance and her actual trained ability. What I mean is, it seems that, at least at this point, she’s being fed a line of bull about being a “force to be reckoned with” that is completely out of sync with reality. She could very well be less capable of defending herself now than if she had no training at all. She needs, at some point, to be coached through developing the skill, which means more than punching the air and doing kata. But at 6, I think there’s still time for that.123
     
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