Knowing your skill level or the improvement rate is one of the critical factors to keep in mind for developing any skills or habits. You must know what position are you in just to sake of your personal growth.
Of course, there is a list of skills or habits you are trying to get along with, or you already have taken care of. The practice of one of the most famous martial art, Karate is not out of this list as well.
Karate is a fantastic form of physical exercise that requires an enormous amount of dedication, focus, and step by step development. The progress of one of the best martial arts cannot be achieved overnight. Being aware of your training level will help you to develop and go beyond your limits as well.
For letting you know about your karate skill level, they have quite apparent checkpoints. These well-organized checkpoints are the karate belts. As you will develop your skills, you will be rewarded with next level belts every time until you reach the maximum level. Different colored belts represent different rankings.
As we are speaking of karate belts, there is an interesting myth about karate belts, which is found very often. A long time ago, a few extremely dedicated martial artists practiced Karate for so long and so restlessly that the white belt, turned totally into black.
No, crayon colors were not used to make it black. It was all dirt and extreme sweating for the restless practice. Though this is a myth, to this day, we can still see the hardship of a karate practitioner, and the difficulty level of Karate is varied from white belt to black belt. Quite a story, isn’t it?
There are not just two black and white-colored belts in the Karate. There are more colors, and they don’t represent the fashion statement. They represent the ranks and skill levels. Let’s get familiar with the orders that come with the colors of karate belts.
Order and Colors Of Karate Belts
In general, the representation of orders with the colors of the karate belts is quite well-categorized and straightforward. Though there are different kinds of belt colors and rankings depending on the continents or practices.
However, we need to start with the order. In the karate world, beginners are categorized as Kyu, which is equivalent to the student level. The students are called Mudansha. The advanced practitioners are ranked as Dank rank. They are called Yudansha.
Both students and advanced practitioners have different categorized orders, and depending on that, they are rewarded with the equivalent belt.
This belt is for the absolute beginners who showed up in the training and starting take their interests in karate training. This white belt is a reflection of a fresh start with a pure soul.
The beginners start with sheer dedication and will to work hard. Everyone must start somewhere and mostly with nothing. Most beginners don’t have many experiences with body control or mind control. This is quite a new experience for them.
When you are wearing a white belt, it means you are diving into an extreme physical and mental exercise with total focus, and you must go a long way. The white belt also is known as the 6th Kyu.
So, you got into Karate and regularly maintaining your sessions. You are learning the very basics of Karate, and hopefully, you are seeing yourself practicing Karate regularly.
The yellow belt represents the hope for a starting. It requires a stronger will-power to go on. If any student is working hard on their practice and making their way to the next level, the yellow belt will be there.
Anyone who is willing to get a yellow belt must be in the regular practice for approximately six months or more. This belt is known as the 5th Kyu.
So here you are, practicing almost regularly, and you made a habit out of it. You are starting to like it. You are more into the Karate than before.
Yes, you are on your way to the orange belt. This is known as the 4th Kyu.
Students who are being devoted to the regular karate practice and probably have higher ambition for the Karate will be rewarded with the orange belt.
In this phase, you must be more precise and more obliged to the rules. As a result, you will be more focused on your practice. Tactics and defense mechanisms get better and better. Also, maintaining distance from your opponents and the perfect time to hit such kind of improvements will be clearly visible.
You must be in the practice session for up to 6 months or more to achieve an orange belt.
Okay, things are going to be a bit serious now. After having a proper amount of practice and regulations, you already got an orange belt. Now, it is time for more devotion. It will get you the green belt.
The green belt is known as the 3rd Kyu. This is a representation of awareness and skill-development.
The students who already went through the karate practices, including all the basics, will be working on their acts. This part of the karate practice makes a student capable of protecting themselves from any attack. This also improves the previous techniques and tactics they have learned.
Moreover, in this segment, you will be more aware of how to act on your opponent’s movements and when to attack. More effective and more precise strategies will be learned.
This session will last for around nine months or more.
If you have gone through all the previous karate sessions and practiced your heart out, you are most probably already in great shape.
However, the training is not enough yet. In a single line, you have more roads to go.
After finishing the training for about one year or for more time, you are ready to get into another level of karate practice. This time you will be working hard to get your hands on the blue belt, which is also known as the 2nd Kyu.
In this part of the training, you will learn about the mind and body control techniques. In the previous pieces of training, you already got to know about mind control alongside the body control. This time you will master the art.
Adding to the interest, you will be more aware of the opponent. You will get to know how to dominate the opponent or even how to read the movements properly. This leads you to the way of self-defense mechanism and blocking.
This training will be approximately up to twelve months or more depending on the student’s development.
Are you done with your blue belt training? Then you are about to jump into the last phase of the kyu level. No, this is not the end of the karate training, but getting in here requires a lot of effort and will-power.
If your white clothes get dirty, it might turn black. Before turning into black, it would be brown. A less dark cloth, but it shows the dirt in there, exactly like your training. You are almost there, and this time, the glory is the brown belt.
This training is one of the vital parts of the whole karate training phases, where one student can master the previous training lessons in a whole new level.
This is often said that the brown belt makes a karate trainee perfectly capable for the next level extreme karate practices. It enhances the control over mind and body, improvisation of the hand to hand combats, and more matured execution of the strategies.
This is known as the 1st Kyu, and it requires around 18 months of training to complete.
You might have heard of the black belt from the movies or met someone who was talking about this training session too proudly.
To be honest, this part of the training is something to be delighted about.
If you are done with your brown belt training period, now you are no longer a student or in the kyu level. You are a bit advanced from the rest. From now on, you will be practicing Karate for a new name; which is Yudansha. This level is called the dan level.
After finishing this level, you will be rewarded with the ultimate one, the black belt. In this level, you must explore a lot of skill sets on different levels. Let’s check them out.
At this level, a trainee will be proficient in the basic karate knowledge and skills. You will have a white stripe in your black belt.
This is the second dan training. This one is for people with proper karate skills. There will be two stripes on your belt now.
This one is for the masters with karate knowledge and tactics. Four white stripes for the acknowledgment.
This belt with five stripes is for the trainees with basic karate knowledge and an adequate grasp on the skillsets.
Outstanding karate practitioners with a better understanding of strategies will get these six white striped black belts.
The practitioner who not only mastered the skills but also investigated the meaning of karate practice will hold this belt. This belt has seven white stripes.
This one is for the curious karate enthusiasts who got into the broad path for the Karate.
This belt has eight white stripes, and this is for the karate practitioners who got master level skillsets.
This belt is for the higher level of karate practitioners with maximum knowledge and perfect skillsets.
This one is the master level belt for the extraordinary karate masters who achieved maximum knowledge about Karate and mastered the self-awareness skill to the perfect level.
The karate belts are designed differently for different regions, and as you can see that they have a deeper meaning than you think. All the steps have different pieces of training, and from time to time, the focus, integrity, and will-power get enhanced through the practice requires a great deal of self-awareness.
It is often said that the opponents of the great karate masters are themselves. They fight against themselves. The total practice of Karate will lead you to know yourself and work on yourself.
Maybe that is the true beauty of practicing Karate.