Black belts too soon????

Manny

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It took me almost 4 years and a half of hard work to go from white to black belt, I dedicated if not devoted to TKD those years, I was very participative, some times I trained twice, I atended to seminars on kyorugi, self defense,and some tournaments and now I see the kids to go too fast an easily!!!

In a blink the kids are red belts to soon and too easy for me, also every one who do rank tests pass them even the technique they show is so awfull or wrong, maybe I'm to strict about the examination criteria but recall when I was a teen the sambonim gave us our grades afther the rank (kup) test and the lazy or not prepared did not pass the test. It was not easy but for the dedicated ones to pass the rank examination and every december before the black belt test sambonim say who will do the test and who won't.

These are my toghts only.

Manny
 

goingd

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Manny, I understand your thoughts. I admit, I got my black belt a little more quickly - about two years. But in my case I trained non stop; I could never go to just one class a day. At one point I was training four classes a day, five days a week. I also admit I've seen a lot of people (kids mostly) get promoted too quickly or when they're not ready. I don't justify it. My master notes that as "a false sense of accomplishment."

For the longest time I was planning to try and make a good living from teaching the martial arts. Only recently I've decided that I can't do it. Most schools cannot survive unless they promote in that manner. I plan to teach, but not to make a living from it.

That's just my own little rant.
 

Bill Mattocks

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The average in my (isshinryu) dojo is 9 years. Some faster, some slower.
 

celtic_crippler

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While a great deal depends on the individual because you get out of something what you put into it, the "black belt" should denote a level of "expert" and I don't know a whole lot of people that become experts at something quickly.
 

Brian R. VanCise

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While a great deal depends on the individual because you get out of something what you put into it, the "black belt" should denote a level of "expert" and I don't know a whole lot of people that become experts at something quickly.

Excellent well thought out post! Truthfully each individual will be different but.... it takes time to be really good and understand what you are doing. So if someone is going to teach or be considered and "expert" then it probably should take a while.
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ATC

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It only takes one year for most to get a BB in Korea. However those that do it that fast do TKD everyday for 6+ hours.
 

terryl965

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Well it takes about 5-7 years with me and that is if they come atleast five classes a week, I tell all my people if they are in a hurry than I am not the right school for you. I mean come on two year three days a week one hour a day so in 304 hours you are a BB that is less than two good months on a job. In today marketplace with all the soccor moms it put pressure on alot of folks to promote and worry about it later approach. To bad for the Arts but we only have ourself to blame.
 

Balrog

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There is no substitute for time. I'm not talking about workout time, I'm talking calendar time, while one internalizes the teachings of the art.

An analogy: you're baking a cake. The recipe says to mix the ingredients and then put it in the oven for two hours at 250 degrees. You decide you want it faster, so you crank the oven up to 500 for one hour. What do you wind up with?

Right - something crusty on the outside and half-baked on the inside. Same with martial arts.
 

Earl Weiss

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While a great deal depends on the individual because you get out of something what you put into it, the "black belt" should denote a level of "expert" and I don't know a whole lot of people that become experts at something quickly.

In the ITF, first thru third dans are classed as novice. 4-6 are expert.
 

Earl Weiss

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There is no substitute for time. I'm not talking about workout time, I'm talking calendar time, while one internalizes the teachings of the art.

.

A similar theory is setout in General Chois' 1972 Book. It was a schedule of diminishing returns. One needs to keep in mind this was originaly for military personnel, usualy good physical specimens.

585 Hours over 30 months
702 hours over 18 months.
1248 hours over 12 months.

So, in order to compensate for shortening calender time. The number of classroom training hours needed increased.
 
OP
Manny

Manny

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Since I came back my sambunim has talked me about the second dan black belt degree, and I have say No! Igraduate from black belt in 1987 I trained till 1990 if I recall, then I came back in july 2007, so 17 years have passed by since my return, now I have 2 years os training and I'am not prepared physically at least to earn a second degree black belt.

I train when I can or want, this is two nights per week and I consider this to little, so I will stay in 1 Dan for a little longer. Right now I'm having diet and doing more exerise to burn some bacon, when my body allows then I will purseu the second dan.

I gave my greatest effort to earn my black belt, so to earn the second degree will be the same way, I don't like the easy way.

Manny
 

punisher73

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While a great deal depends on the individual because you get out of something what you put into it, the "black belt" should denote a level of "expert" and I don't know a whole lot of people that become experts at something quickly.


Blackbelt meaning "expert" is not something that is true across the board for styles or cultural meaning. Many traditional schools still view the BB as something that only means you have a good enough grasp of the basics to start learning. It is no mistake that in traditional arts "Sho-Dan" means "first level". Up until then you are a sub-rank. It was not meant to show mastery of anything.

Back then as well as today you had people changing what the belt/rank meant to show that "their's was better". Think about it, if you have a student obtain a blackbelt in 3 yrs and it only means that they have a firm grasp on the basic principles/concepts and techniques of your style and then you put them against someone from the same style, but a different organization that makes them train for 10 yrs to get a blackbelt, which one comes out on top?

It means nothing...outside of that school/organization and the personal meaning for the holder.
 

punisher73

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The average in my (isshinryu) dojo is 9 years. Some faster, some slower.


Which is very odd considering that was not how the system was set up. If you look at the requirements of the Isshin-Kai which try VERY hard to preserve things as was taught by Tatsuo Shimabuku the time to test for Sho-Dan is 3 yrs. Also, how the early students of Shimabuku were promoted it was nothing close to 9 yrs.
 

celtic_crippler

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Blackbelt meaning "expert" is not something that is true across the board for styles or cultural meaning. Many traditional schools still view the BB as something that only means you have a good enough grasp of the basics to start learning. It is no mistake that in traditional arts "Sho-Dan" means "first level". Up until then you are a sub-rank. It was not meant to show mastery of anything.

Back then as well as today you had people changing what the belt/rank meant to show that "their's was better". Think about it, if you have a student obtain a blackbelt in 3 yrs and it only means that they have a firm grasp on the basic principles/concepts and techniques of your style and then you put them against someone from the same style, but a different organization that makes them train for 10 yrs to get a blackbelt, which one comes out on top?

It means nothing...outside of that school/organization and the personal meaning for the holder.

I didn't say "master", I said "expert."

Old timers remember when being a "black belt" illicited respect because it did mean something. It's not until the developments of the last 20 - 30 years that the general public pretty much has no respect for it. Why do you think that is?
 

dancingalone

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I agree the time taken to earn a BB varies by system. It took me about 3.5 years to get my chodan in TKD. It took me a full five years to get a shodan in goju-ryu even with my prior experience. I found my TKD experience actually made it more difficult for me to 'get' goju...

Anyway, my students seem to be taking 6 years to reach shodan with me, taking class 3x a week. These are the testing requirements that I posted in another thread a few days ago.

======================================

Demonstrate all basic stances and stance shifts
Demonstrate all hand strikes and kicks in random combinations
Demonstrate breaking power with hands (minimum 3 boards), kicks (minimum 3 boards) and in combination (minimum 4 boards in less than 5 seconds with at least 3 techniques)

Sanchin testing:
sanchin performed 10 times in a row (usually takes 45 min to an hour) with INTENSE shime testing

kata:
gekkisai dai ichi
gekkisai dai ni
saifa
gekiha
seiunchin
shisochin
sanseiru

optional kata (any two from this list):
pinan yondan
pinan godan
naihanchi shodan
passai
shorin-ryu seisan

formal bunkai sets (many TKD students won't be familiar with them, but they are essentially two man katas which teach the surface level applications to the solo kata; this is an example video <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hcCj1_x77Ms">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hcCj1_x77Ms</a> :
kihon bunkai gekkisai dai ichi
kihon bunkai gekkisai dai ni
kihon bunkai saifa
kihon bunkai gekiha
kihon bunkai seiunchin
kihon bunkai shisochin
kihon bunkai sanseiru

meditation & breath control:
demonstrate proper breathing during the test and during a formal observation period

impromtu bunkai demonstration:
at least two from each of the following kata
sanchin
gekkisai dai ichi or dai ni
saifa
seiunchin
shisochin
sanseiru

aiki/jujutsu/judo techniques done from both sides in response to straight or round blow:
ikkyo
nikyo
sankyo
yonkyo
kotegaeshi
shihonage
iriminage
kaitenage
o goshi
o guruma
osoto gari
osoto guruma
tomoe nage
deashi harai
ippon seionage

self-defense (using movements from kata):
wrist grab
cross wrist grab
lapel grab
front choke
rear choke
bear hug
rear bear hug
prone position with someone on top
knife attacks (4)
club attacks (4)
chain attack

kobudo:
kihon-kata-no-bo
kihon-kata-no-bo
tokomine-no-kun (sho)
kumi bo nidan
bo/bo kumite #1
kihon-kata-no-tonfa
tokomine-no-kun (dai)
bo/bo kumite #2
bamahiga-no-tonfa (sho)
bo/tonfa kumite #1

jiyu kumite:
3 rounds of 1 vs. 1
2 rounds of 2 vs. 1
1 round of 3 vs. 1
1 round vs. any brown belt or dan holder present who wishes to test the candidate (funny how all the brown belts are DYING to give their friend a few licks)
1 round vs. me (by now the black belt candidate should be very tired; I will be testing primarily for spirit, endurance, and courage at this point)
 

terryl965

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in a basic system like TKD, 3-4 years is average

I do not understand this question TKD is not a basic system if it is done right. Lets talk back in the days when the ROK was being tought it was a devastating leathal Art over the years it has shifted to a sport but remember some of us older guys still teach the original along side the sport.

Next problem I have is when somebody complains about a 10-14 having a B.B., this is why it bothers me, my sons have been training since they could walk one is 11,12 and 15 all of them are poom ranks which is a junior B.B so maybe one needs to define when they are saying 10 year old BB are they a jumior and if so let it be treated as such, now Zachary will be testing late summer for his Dan rank and will be treated like an adult and he has 13 years in TKD longer than most but it will not be his first BB because he was a junior, right now he fights in the men catagories because of his power so I can pretty much tell you he is capable of doing what needs to bedone if it comes to that. Lets not think by any standard that everyone is created equal here, if he was a Basketball jock or a football or baseball player nobody would say anything but because it is a Martial art he can't be any good or he is too young. Maybe we should take people one ata time and on there own merit. TF this was not at all pointed at you just the first part about being a simple art, this rest kinda fell into place.
 

Twin Fist

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Terry,
a teachers kids WOULD be BB's by the time they are 12 or so. A kid off the street? no way, no how

And soryy, but I disagree, TKD is, comparativly, a simple martial art. There just isnt that much too it unless you add things.
 

dancingalone

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I do not understand this question TKD is not a basic system if it is done right. Lets talk back in the days when the ROK was being tought it was a devastating leathal Art over the years it has shifted to a sport but remember some of us older guys still teach the original along side the sport.

TKD is certainly an effective combat system if train correctly, but I agree myself it's a 'simple' system.

Why?

  • a lack of integrated weapons training compared to kobudo in Okinawan karate or the various bladed and nonbladed weapons use in CMA or silat
  • linear patterns generally taught on 1-2 rhythms, compared to other systems that have more variation in height and zonal control
  • a general lack of full application studies with forms (although yes I know lots on this forum are trying to reverse the trend)
  • lack of healing studies such as those found in internal Chinese MA
This is just off the top of my head. No insult or shame meant by this critique by the way. It's just the state of the art. By the same token, I would acknowledge TKD has few peers in terms of its breadth in kicking technique.
 

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