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Old 05-22-2009, 02:50 PM   #1
Randy Sexton
Dojo: Aikido of Lake Keowee
Location: South Carolina
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 187
How Should We Conduct a Black Belt Presentation?

I have seen many receive their Black Belt over the years and I have observed everything from a simple bow and passing the belt to a more formal presentation.
Maybe it is just me but when I do earn my Black Belt in Aikido I would like it to be more ceremonious than when I received my Black Belt in Taekwondo. That was very simple and no family was present. It felt like "here you go and good luck."
I was pleased at the accomplishment but felt a little let down in the presentation. I hoped for and wanted more than that. Maybe I just enjoy a good ceremony more than some people. My military background taught me to appreciate a bit of pomp and circumstance!
IMHO I would think it would be very nice to have family present to celebrate the occasion as well as my dojo mates. I would like a sense of formality and etiquette. We make a great effort to maintain a sense of etiquette in Aikido and when we have a great opportunity for a excellent presentation are we missing it?
I watch similar presentations in the movies and tthey seem to make things look really cool. Remember the scene in "Kill Bill" when she received her sword?
Yes, I know the typical responses, "Take pride in your accomplishment and the Black Belt is just the beginning, etc. etc."
My point is this; are we minimizing the accomplishment by not taking advantage of the opportunity to show students that we recognize their hard work and create a sense of deep significance?

1. What was your experience like when you got your Black Belt?
2. Should Sensei take the effort to create a formal occasion for it?
3. What would you imagine a really cool presentation to be like?
4. If your Dojo has a nice ceremony tell us about it?


"Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will"
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