Ranking in Kali

I

IMAA

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Hello my fellow FMA'st...

I'd like to get some input on Ranking structure within Kali systems. First: How many of you have an actual BELT ranking system and what are they, and some of the requirements ( if its not too long?)

Im asking because I have been asked to share in a Local Karate Club, some Kali. Now I only share with the advanced ranks due to the nature of most of the system. However I remember as I was learning years ago we never wore ranks/belts. We were awarded levels by how many classes we attended and how many hours that we put in learning. In our class it was easy you were either the Teacher or the student. And in this Karate club its rather the same way however, I am curius as to possibly adding a rank structure to he guys/gals Im sharing with. Is this possible? And should thier only be a small number of ranks like say 4 or so, vs. like 9 or 10 in a Karate atmosphere. I was just curious as to who if any has a ranking strcture in there classes, like maybe LEVEL ONE thru 9 or so. Or belts or sashes, or different color shirts even. Any ideas would help.

I'd also like to see if any one would share a list of the filipino Rank Terminology i.e..

Beginer student
advanced student
apprentice instructor
Instructor -Guro
master instructor Lakan guro
etc......
This would really mean alot to me thanks

CORY
 

Damian Mavis

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I've never seen ranks in kali either but uh... are you certified to teach it? I think teaching it if your not certified is fine, but taking the extra step of giving people rank is taking that one huge step too far...... unless of course you are certified to do so.

I would just teach it without a ranking system if I was you.


Damian Mavis
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I

IMAA

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Damian-

Hello thanks for your reply I appreciate the help.

Yes, I have been given Certification to teach. I have been involve in the FMA for well around 12yrs or so. I have only wanted to find out this question to see if many others have had any or the same issue.

I only share with the local Karate club a fraction of what I do on my own personal level of teaching in my own school. It has just been something the Shihan Jackson (the sensei of the Karate dojo) has been wanting me to do, and I mentioned that Kali has no specific ranking structure that I am aware of. However I know that some Escrima and Arnis (mainly Modern Arnis) do.

I appreciate your input, once again. Thank you.
 

Damian Mavis

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Great, no I wouldnt change the structure or anything like that just to teach karate people. Teach it just like you normally do, they don't need "special" rank to make themsleves feel better, just learning should be enough.

Damian Mavis
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arnisandyz

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I also taught Arnis at my friends TKD school to his students, and some of them often asked what "belt" I am or if they can get a black belt in my system. I usually reply that i would probably be "equivilent" to thier instructor level if we had a ranking system. I no longer teach at that school, but when my other friend and I started teaching only our FMA, I wondered if we should have a ranking system. We decided to stay with tradition, the way we were taught, no ranking systems and to give everything, and its up to the student to learn what he/she wants and stay and learn more or move on when they feel they have learned all they can from us. This has worked out great for us. Our primary goal was to spread the art in our area and develop a small harcore group to train with. Our group consists of manly of black belt, instructor level people from other systems who are more concerned with learning then getting a certificate. If your goals are $$$$ based (your trying to makea living teaching FMA), you may have to develop a belt system as many students who are not as "into it" as others may need this as motivation. It becomes more of a social event rather than training. Might want to consider a "little dragon's" program as well.

Although some organize a belt system trying to make the art "better" or easier to learn or "organized", I think by doing this, they are losing some of what makes FMA so interesting and adaptable. They now have created a cookie cutter art where everyone fits in the same mold rather than a personal art which is interpreted differently by each student.
 
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Arnisandyz-

Again thanks well said also

I agree I am only helping spread the FMA througout our community by doing so In a local Karate club/dojo. I met one of the black belts in the school who is a Police officer andteaches defensive Tactics and he was so impressed w/ Kali that he wanted to introduce me to his Sensei. I met and shared with him for a few hours and we talked and he was so impressed he asked me to come and teach it at his dojo. It is a free martial arts school no cost to students therefore I dont get compensated for it, rather than just the excitement of teaching and sharing it within the community. I teach a small training group at my academy outside of town I just teach a small number of people one due to room etc..... however there I tend to move forward more and advance on certain criteria more.

At the Dojo we just do simple numerado, and siniwalli, some disarms and I teach a more self defense against or with a stick /knife if you will rather than kali as it was taught to me or I pass it along to my students. I have no desire to make a rank system or what not, in fact like you mentioned it disrupts the balance of what is being taught if you make a rank system into it. however for the Karate people they are BELT oriented and thats all that makes sense to them, so I was thinking of making a criteria up for their karate promotions that they must know a small or certain level of criteria for thier rank to Shodan in Karate.

I had been promoted to a 2nd dan in Karate many years ago and stoped learning karate due to I felt I was at a stand still in the system, and continued my training in FMA/IMA and found that I was continuelly growing there in that field. So when Shihan met me and seen my skill and asked me what rank I was I said well by legality Im only a 2nd dan in American Karate, but I have been doing FMA for around 12 yrs and have an Instructors certification in Kali from my instuctor Guru Bruce Ogle and have been given blessing to teach other fma systems from my other instructors in the art of Serrada Escrima etc.... and he is now wanting to promote me to 4th dan in his system due to he says I have a more well known knowledge of martial arts than most of his students and high ranking black belts as from himslef. I just chose not to continue my path along Karate. If I were to stay in Karate back in 91 when I stopped I'd probably be a 4th or 5th dan by now. So he is going to honor me with that. However I told him thats his decision, Im not going to dishonor him by not acepting such a rank, however I also dont give much regards to rank either. So we are working things out.
It's really crazy this whole rank thing, its got me flustered. LOL

be well all and thanks so much for your help
Cory
 

Cthulhu

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arnisandyz and AldonAsher do have a sort of ranking system: the more you've learned, the harder they beat on you!

:D

I'm soooo dead tonight.

Cthulhu
 

arnisandyz

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Cory,

Its good talking with you. We have many similarities. I have trained TKD and Arnis since I was 12. I have always maintained a good balance with both, recognizing what each can give. I have since left TKD to focus on FMA. You can probably relate to this, At the time, my TKD instructor (same one since I was 12) these last 5 or so years has been very suggestive, almost insistant that I test for my next Dan. The reason being, that others that I have been teaching since white belt (TKD) are moving up in rank, possibly above me. My philosphy has always been (possibly due to the Arnis background) for the search of knowledge and not rank. Reflecting back, I think it was also because I felt TKD had nothing more to give me and If I moved up, all I would get is more forms. At this point I was staying with it for the exercise and friends. It was at this point when I left TKD. The politics of the school couldn't handle that I was lower rank, but actually higher in knowledge than most of the other instructors.

This possibly is what left a bad taste in my mouth as far as organizations and ranking systems are concerned. In most areas of FMA your not judged by rank, but by what you can do. I have even heard old stories of Teachers back in the Philippines who refused to claim one of their students as a guro due to the fact that that would be putting the students life on the line (opening him up for challanges, etc). Instead, it was up to the student to declair themselves as a teacher, knowing the consequences that go with it.

Salamat mahal.

andy
 

arnisandyz

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Cory,

A smple solution rather than belt ranking, could be to come up with a "participation" certificate, or Kali 'patch' Belt people LOVE patches), or perhaps a simple stripe on the belt that represents knowledge in your system.

Its sounds like this could be a good solution providing your attendees a show of knowledge, without disrupting your system.

Let me know how it goes.

Andy
 

arnisandyz

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Originally posted by Cthulhu

arnisandyz and AldonAsher do have a sort of ranking system: the more you've learned, the harder they beat on you!

:D

I'm soooo dead tonight.

Cthulhu



HAAAAA! I forgot to mention to you Cthulhu, tonight you get a "promotion".
 

Cthulhu

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Originally posted by arnisandyz

HAAAAA! I forgot to mention to you Cthulhu, tonight you get a "promotion".

Why do I equate that with 'bodybag'?

Cthulhu
 

arnisandyz

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"The politics of the school couldn't handle that I was lower rank, but actually higher in knowledge than most of the other instructors."

Let me rephrase this to give credit to the great TKD practioners I trained with.
Others have more knowledge and better kicking ability than I in TKD. What meant to say was that I was able to beat a majority of TKD players at sparring using FMA techniques. I guess it doesn't look good when someone of another style consistently beats higher ranked people (which were at one time, my students). This however was great game to play, utilizing my hand mobility against there long range weapons.

Regards
 
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I

IMAA

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Arnisandyz,

Oh I can relate oh so well...hahaha. The story about the instructors not acknowleging thier students is quite intersting and very understandable as I have heard about alot of the Pilipino practicioners in the Phillipines are rather sensitive about who is teaching what etc......

Angel Cabalas is one name that comes to mind.
cacoy canete another
both great stick fighters and from stories I haveheard they used to challenge about anybody or get challenges alot.

I think the stripe on the belt is a brilliant idea. I just may utilize that one.

I was talking to the sensei tonite of the karate school and I think he understands about the ranking ordeal. I gave him a copy of the book "FMA by Guro Dan Inosanto" hopefully it will do some explaining that I could not.

What type of curriculum do you guys usually teach kids for those of you that do teach children.? Just another silly question

thanks
Cory
 

Rich Parsons

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Ranking:

I have rank in Modern Arnis, yet the most important rank I have ever held in Modern Arnis or in Balintawak has been Student and Student of . . .

In Anciongs Balintawak taught by Manong (GM) Ted Buot, there are only two ranks. Instructor and student.

I have 17+ years in Modern Arnis and 4+ years in Balintawak and student of is still the rank I like the best.

Just my two (2) cents worth.

Rich
:asian:
 
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IMAA

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Rich-

I thank you for your comment, and I couldnt of said it better myself.

Its funny you state that. Because in my Serrada Eskrima training and my JKD training its just that. We all know our place when we go to work out/class.

You know if your either the TEACHER/ or the STUDENT

I enjoy being the student, in fact I consider myself a "lifetime" student of all I can learn.

I dont much get caught up in the whole material "rank" structure my self. Yeah I have a black belt in a couple of systems but you could aske anyone that knows me that I am by far not caught up on showing it off or wearing it, in fact I'd much rather hang it on a wall as an accomplishment and always wear street clothes to class, and in my personal classes and sessons that is exactly how I do it. Its only in the Karate dojo that I wear my GI and belt. Only because it is required there by the sensei.
The first few days I was there I would not wear my gi and belt and he insisted I wear it for future classes so his students knew my standings. I still dont like it, but out of respect for him and his students I do. I personally could give a rats about all that materialistic mumbo.

But yes, I agree AS a student you should want to learn and know all your material you are required and as a TEACHER you should know each of your students and where they stand by just observing them. To me thats a good instructor you shouldnt need belt to show your skill or knowledge. This is one thing about the FMA and such that I really enjoy about it.

Thank you Rich for bringing that up.

yours in the arts
Cory Ballinger
 

lhommedieu

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I posted this on the "Gradings" thread yesterday, but as this thread is much the same I thought I'd post it here as well:

With respect to ranking, San Miguel Eskrima has a three-level curriculum and while students do not wear belts while training in their own school, they are encouraged to wear a belt (white, green, or brown) when visiting another teacher's school, in order to designate the parts of the curriculum to which they have been exposed. This helps the instructor at the visited school to expose the visiting student to new material.

In addition, a 'black belt" in our association is someone who has learned the basic material to a certain level of proficiency but has not yet started to teach a class. An "instructor" is a black belt who teaches the art on a consistant basis.

Given the lack of formality in the Filipino martial arts it is no surprise that the "belt issue" is treated with a tongue-in-cheek attitude: when instructors in our association debated the issue of whether or not to issue belts, they decided that if the belt system were to be adopted, you can stop wearing a belt upon promotion to black belt. To date, no instructor in our system has ever worn a belt.

As for tests, my opinion has always been that if you are ready to test for promotion, you should have already been performing at or above the level to which you are testing for some time. For example, when I was promoted to brown belt in another martial arts system and was preparing for my next promotion to black belt, I was told by the instructor "to act at all times as if I already was a black belt." In other words, it was not a question of learning new material, but doing what I already knew how to do with a different quality of movement and a heightened attitude. When I passed the black belt test, I understood that the difference between that level and the next black belt level was, again, a question of quality, not quantity. Again - there was no new material, you just had to do keep doing it better and better.

It's a sobering thought that the "teaching rank" in this system is three ranks above the initial black belt rank.

Best,

Steve Lamade
San Miguel Eskrima
 

Rich Parsons

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Originally posted by IMAA

Rich-

I thank you for your comment, and I couldnt of said it better myself.

Its funny you state that. Because in my Serrada Eskrima training and my JKD training its just that. We all know our place when we go to work out/class.

You know if your either the TEACHER/ or the STUDENT

I enjoy being the student, in fact I consider myself a "lifetime" student of all I can learn.

I dont much get caught up in the whole material "rank" structure my self. Yeah I have a black belt in a couple of systems but you could aske anyone that knows me that I am by far not caught up on showing it off or wearing it, in fact I'd much rather hang it on a wall as an accomplishment and always wear street clothes to class, and in my personal classes and sessons that is exactly how I do it. Its only in the Karate dojo that I wear my GI and belt. Only because it is required there by the sensei.
The first few days I was there I would not wear my gi and belt and he insisted I wear it for future classes so his students knew my standings. I still dont like it, but out of respect for him and his students I do. I personally could give a rats about all that materialistic mumbo.

But yes, I agree AS a student you should want to learn and know all your material you are required and as a TEACHER you should know each of your students and where they stand by just observing them. To me thats a good instructor you shouldnt need belt to show your skill or knowledge. This is one thing about the FMA and such that I really enjoy about it.

Thank you Rich for bringing that up.

yours in the arts
Cory Ballinger

Cory,

Thank you for the nice comments. I only state my opinion here. I do not claim to be the first nor the only nor that this should be the only way.
(* Which you did not imply in any means either. *)

I wish everyone a happy and fruitful and meaningful journey.

Rich
:asian:
 

arnisandyz

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RE: the Student/Teacher

Some of the best teachers I have had will also say they are lifetime students. When we workout in my training group, I don't like to consider myself as the "teacher", but more of a conductor, or organizer, or MC. The one who says, "what do you want to work on". Having this attiude while going into a class opens more opportunities for everyone to learn from each other.

See the benifits of just throwing it out there and see who can contribute what. If I show a technique or drill and a big guy says , "I would respond this way" and a smaller guy says "I would do it a different way" or even if they don't say a word, I can feel what they are doing, I just learned how different people of different sizes, skill level and backgrounds might respond differently to the same thing. So the art is not only tailored to the individual practitioner, but also to who you might go up against. Fun stuff.
 

thekuntawman

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if you dont mind, i would like to say something about ranking in the philippine martial arts.

not to long ago, there really is no rank structure, just some people are respected more than other people. in one town you might have someone who everybody goes to learn how to fight, and he is always going to be considered there teacher, even if a student has gone to four or five people. i believe it is how many filipinos look up to foreign cultures, they thought the philippine way was to plain or boring, or not classy enough, so the younger people try to become more like verybody else, with belts and ranks and especially fancy titles. of course the old people didnt like it, but those young people are old people today.

most of the people today who reject that kind of thing come from two places. 1. they learned from an old man who is stuck in the way things use to be 2. people who learned in a modern school but didnt get enough "rank" so now he is rejecting it, saying he wants to be like the old days.

rank today is necessary if you have a school and you will graduate students. you dont want anyone who is not worthy, to teach others or ruin your reputation. but rank in the western world (and it is sad but true, in the philippines sometimes too) is base on money and numbers, not skill.

i reject the story someone here told that a teacher does not give out rank for the reason he said. i was taught, if you are not confident that you can beat any man who comes to you, and you cannot teach a student to beat any man who comes to him, dont call yourself a teacher, and dont teach. because you are making the agreement that you are showing someone how to save his own life, or defend his family.

the problem with the seminars and video tape business is that the title of "guro" is cheap. you can see this by the order, two student ranks, and then you have seven "instructor" ranks. so the path to becoming a teacher is easier than the path to becoming a master (all you need is time in rank and money). this is ********.

no man should teach his own school until his tournament career is almost over. by "tournament career" i am even talking about just going around sparring to different people, not just at a tournament. if you never had a tournament career, because maybe you are to busy with a job or you think you are to old (meaning "i am to scared"). then maybe becoming a teacher of the PHILIPPINE martial arts is not for you. people are confusing our art with japanese and chinese and korean art. would you go to a boxing trainer who never fought in the ring?

today i read messages in these forums, like "hey, just want to let everybody know i got my apprentice instructor certificate yesterday! i will start teaching a class at....." what will this poor ignorant boy do when a couple of thugs come to his place to make fun of him and build up there own ego?"

anyway, i am finished complaining. but to answer your question, here is how i do rank in my school
beginner level 1
beginner level 2
beginner level 3
intermediate level (only one level)
advance level (only one level)
expert level (not teaching/apprentice instructor)
teacher

competition at the black belters level begins at advance level, and contact fighting is mandatory for expert level. expert level will last at least 2 years, and i dont charge tuition at this level.

outsiders are invited to ranking promotions to "test" my students. this way anyone who wants to check them out or say they dont deserve the rank can prove it then. in my three years in california, only tae kwon do and kenpo people came to our promotions. this is why i call the modern method of teaching the philippine martial arts inferior.
 
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seekeroftruth

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IMAA,

I thought "Lakan Guro" meant "Warrior Teacher" and "Tuhon" means master. Am I wrong?
 
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