Tony Peters wrote:
My personal opinion about Hakamas is that everyone should be wearing them that way everything looks uniform. The problem (IMHO) is that there is way to much emphasis placed of the Hak, sorta like there is in other arts with the sacred "Black Belt". I don't use a black Obi any more even though I earned it. I'm much more comfortable using an off-white obi that I made when I was starting Iaido. I have yet to hear any comments about it. Most folks judge me on my technique or my lack of it. Putting everyone in a hak would remove a great barrier, then again it would also eliminate an important though artificial goal as well.
Hear! Hear! Hear!
I wear a blue hakama and I can't tell you how many times I get asked "does the color mean anything?" "Why yes it does", I reply, "I like blue."