Author Topic: "Junior" Black Belt  (Read 27180 times)

Offline Gints Klimanis

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Re: "Junior" Black Belt
« Reply #15 on: March 03, 2003, 01:02:38 PM »
I'll chime in.  We are a small non-commercial (no money left after expenses) school and thus aren't subject to commercial pressures.   In our school, several pre-teens
have participated, but only some until their mid-teens.
Our adult ranking is with half-colored belt progressions (white, purple+white, purple, etc.).  Anyone under the age of thirteen is considered a junior.  The junior grade program  follows the same color progression as the adult program, but colored stripes are substituted instead of half-belt colors.  When a junior reaches
age 13, any grade is converted to a purple belt.

The adults and juniors are taught the same program.  I don't agree that eight year olds should be taught to
attack that groin, a move which is included in just
about every sequence.  However, if a young person
is to be taught how to defend themselves, this is it.
This program is clearly not designed for youngsters
because it's too complicated for all but the sharpest kids.
On another note, I don't believe the program is designed for women because it makes heavy use
of upper body maneuvers such as locks, takedowns and holds -  moves that are generally less successful when there is a relative height and weight difference.

While 13 may seem a bit young in our society, I remember that I was 5'8", 135 lbs when I turned 13.  At age 15, I was 6'0", 150 lbs. At 17, I was 6'2", 190 lbs.  From there, I only grew heavier to my current 205. So, I agree with the age crossover.  While I am larger than average, waiting until age 18 would be too late to teach adult responsibilities to a young man with an adult body.



« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by 1054443600 »
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Offline Rob Poelking

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Re: "Junior" Black Belt
« Reply #16 on: March 04, 2003, 08:32:15 AM »
I think that one of the things that confuses the issue (at least for our school) is there isn't a clear cut "child" curriculum. It is just the adult curriculum modified and perhaps broken down for a couple more belt structures.

Personally, I like the idea of a child curriculum, with a child structure (minus a black belt) and their rank is always lower than the adult rank until they are of age to join the adult curriculum. At that point they would test for the lowest intermediate rank and begin from there toward their black belt at 18.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:03 PM by -1 »
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ShaolinKempoSensei

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Re: "Junior" Black Belt
« Reply #17 on: March 04, 2003, 12:08:38 PM »
OK.  Here's a different look at this.  James Mitose, sent away at about 5 years old, returns at 25 a 10th dan.

What age was he when he was a 1st dan?    ;)



« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by 1054443600 »

Offline John Bishop

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Re: "Junior" Black Belt
« Reply #18 on: March 04, 2003, 12:43:41 PM »
Oh please, the fairy tale about James Mitose and the supposed Koshoji Temple?  
Let's talk seriously about real events, with real people.  I mean the Ninja Turtles and Power Rangers were black belts at a very young age also.  But lets keep it real.  
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by 1054443600 »
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Offline Mell

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I do however believe that IRe: "Junior" Black Belt
« Reply #19 on: March 04, 2003, 02:37:30 PM »
If you have a seperate curriculum for children that does not run parallel with the adult curriculum.  How do you explain to your child brown belt who is getting ready to make the transition to the adult structure that his rank is no longer that of a brown belt, but of a lower adult rank?  And what rank would you choose?  Does he/she start over as an adult white belt?  

I don't see a problem with stating ahead of time that children will not be promoted to certian ranks under certain ages.  If "mom & dad" don't like it, they can send there child somewhere else.  We should never compromise our beliefs for the sake of money.

Do we really believe that a child can effectively perform techniques with real levels of competence?  I agree that they can look good, but are they effective in what they do in relationship to execution against adults or is it limited to being effective against children?  Part of what we learn as adults is how to deal with situations where certain techinuqes will not work on certain people.  Can a child discern those things?

I am not an instructor, so I have never had to face the issues myself.  Maybe there are ligitamite reasons/times for promoting children.  With all the black belt children I have seen, I hope someday to find one that will prove me wrong.  But I think it is wrong.  Is it really better to give them a "junior black belt"?  Does that send the right message or are we really kidding ourselves?    

Our school does have a non ranking class for very young children.  It teaches basics skills and techiniqes as will as basic forms.  What do you think about running a school which offers no rank until a person is 13 years old?  Then they could start right away with the adult cirrculum as a white belt.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by 1054443600 »
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Karazenpo

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Re: "Junior" Black Belt
« Reply #20 on: March 04, 2003, 03:53:08 PM »
Hi Mell,
             Imho, you presented your case extremely well and I really don't think there is much one can add to that. The black belt I bestow to someone under 16 is simply "dojo rank", again, the black & white belt to show where the student started and where the student is going & eventually coming full circle. It is not to be worn outside the school and is simply a recognition of senority within the structure of the school and they are told just that.
   As far as not having belt ranking for kids under 13, I don't know, this is a goal orientated society and I think setting short term goals from belt to belt is a positve step in the learning process. It's like when we were in school and let's say studied hard to get that good report card to show our parents. I don't think there's anything wrong with that. It's fun and although the martial arts is serious business I feel there has to be a little "fun" in it too, especially for the kids. If done responsibly & there are no compromises then I see no harm in it.  Respectfully, Shihan Joe
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by 1054443600 »

Offline Mell

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Re: "Junior" Black Belt
« Reply #21 on: March 04, 2003, 05:13:32 PM »
I agree with your point on goal orientation.  Even as an adult, I need that.  
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by 1054443600 »
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ShaolinKempoSensei

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Re: "Junior" Black Belt
« Reply #22 on: March 05, 2003, 05:36:57 AM »
Sigung Bishop,

I think you missed my point about Mitose.  But let's move on.   :)

I guess for as many people in the martial arts we will have almost as many different views.

This discussion can on forever, I'm guessing.  I will promote my youth students to Youth Black Belt.  If you choose not to, that's fine.  We all must do what we feel is right.


See you in another topic!

-John

« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by 1054443600 »

Offline John Bishop

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Re: "Junior" Black Belt
« Reply #23 on: March 05, 2003, 07:05:23 AM »
Mr. Evans:
Please don't view my opinion of James Mitose as a attack against you.  That's a whole differant subject, which I see you'll already started a thread on.
Of course you have the right to promote anyone you please within the constraints of your organization policies.
We were just discussing our school/organizational philosopies on youth black belts, and our personal opinions on the subject.
I feel respectful debate brings forward a lot of good ideas, and causes a lot of re-examination of our own beliefs.    
So if I came across as disrespectful to you I apoligize.  
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by 1054443600 »
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ShaolinKempoSensei

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Re: "Junior" Black Belt
« Reply #24 on: March 05, 2003, 07:54:21 AM »
Sigung,

Thank you.  No disrespect taken from your comment.  I was trying to be funny.  Now you can see why I teach karate and am not a stand-up comic!

I LOVE debate.  I tend to get a new outlook on things when I talk about them with others.  This is a great message board.

Thanks for responding to the Mitose questions!


May Peace Prevail on Earth!


-John

« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by 1054443600 »

Offline Rob Poelking

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Re: "Junior" Black Belt
« Reply #25 on: March 07, 2003, 04:18:55 AM »
Ok, getting back to the original thread.
My sifu had a chance to read over these posts and had to point this out.

Sijo was a young man in his early 20's as 5th degree in Kenpo when he and the other 4 black blets (also young men themselves) began to synthesize Kajukenbo. So at what age did he (or any of them) receive their first Dan?

What was Sijo's age when the Chinese Cultural Assocation awarded him his 10th Dan?
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by 1054443600 »
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Karazenpo

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Re: "Junior" Black Belt
« Reply #26 on: March 07, 2003, 06:25:51 AM »
Very interesting questions, hopefully someone will respond, because I don't have a clue. However, I would like to add the following. I had put up a bio on Benny "The Jet" Urquidez on our Kajukenbo Extended Family forum this morning and I noticed he made his shodan at 14. They had an 18 year old rule. Please, don't get me wrong, I realize "The Jet" is an outstanding martial artist and had a phenomenal record in the ring up until he reitired. So, one could say he is the "big time" exception but no matter how you cut it, an exception was still made. I strongly enforce the 16 year old rule that I followed from Professors Pesare & Cerio. In my earlier posts on this matter, you will recall I award a dojo rank which is more of a senority thing for those who have studied hard & long but are under 16. This, I guess you could call it a Jr. Black Belt, cannot not be worn outside of our two schools for no reason. One of my exceptional students of this dojo rank was moving permanently to California and was not 16. We decided to award him the shodan rank and I felt comfortable with that decision. He was evaluated at a reputable school out their that I have absolutely no affilliation with in any way and they concurred that he deserved it. He even placed 1st and/or 2nd in forms & sparring in the black belt division right after he arrived. So, imho, it is a strict guide but not the final word, sometimes there may be circumstances that justify a deviance from the "norm".
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by 1054443600 »

Karazenpo

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Re: "Junior" Black Belt
« Reply #27 on: March 16, 2003, 11:37:10 AM »
I just found this on the Tracy website from "Gathering of the Eagles":

. No "dan" ranking for youth! At the Gathering of the Eagles we asked Sig Kuftheroff to sign a diploma - the first thing he said - no Dan ranking for anyone one under 18.
    Everyone agreed upon this - the only debate was should the minimum age be 16 or 18. It was agreed each organization would set their own age limits!



« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by 1054443600 »

sigungjoe

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Re: "Junior" Black Belt
« Reply #28 on: May 27, 2003, 07:24:36 AM »
I dont think any person under 18 should be promoted to black period. Even though having a black belt means being proficient in your art, would anyone on the post here let a 16 year old with a doctors degree in surgery let that person work on them?
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by 1054443600 »

Karazenpo

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Re: "Junior" Black Belt
« Reply #29 on: May 27, 2003, 07:52:30 AM »
  I don't know, Sigung Joe, imho, if that is an appropiate analogy. A health professional, a surgeon no less, in the business of saving lives is comparable to someone in what could be classified as a physical training program. There are convicted felons, molesters, rapists and in some instances murderers teaching martial arts. How many convicted felons or murderers do you know that are surgeons? ;)

Professor S. Geroge Pesare had a student (Bobby Ryan)that was promoted to black belt at 16 after undergoing a three day test which required sleeping over, a short time later he became the Professional Karate Association's (PKA) World Welterweight Kickboxing Champion.  :)  My grandfather managed to get into the army when he turned 17 in World War One, served our country and was decorated and still a kid! ;)    Respectfully, Shihan Joe
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:05 PM by -1 »