Great tips on wearing a hakama!
Further on in your post you said:
Kaitlin Costello (KaitlinCostello) wrote:
For me I stick to tradition. However I do not care very much for the hakama being used as a "gift" for being promoted to a Dan rank. Ranking in its self a large gray area and should not be treated in such a manner, IMHO. I believe in fair treatment for everyone, and am lucky enough to be able to train with a group who does not judge my lack of rank, but on the spirit and energy I put into my training. I am respected and I have grown farther then anyone thought I could in this short amount of time. Hakama or not. Belt or not. I wish this kind of thinking is more wide spread.
Personally, kyu, dan whatever I think wearing the hakama should be a choice. If it becomes detrimental, don't wear it. Just Train. Isn't that what we come to the dojo to do, when everything is said and done?
Could you elaborate a bit on what you mean by fair treatment? It sounds as though you're saying everyone ought to be treated in the same manner and that belt ranks and wearing a hakama at dan ranks can get in the way of that.
I've been a real newbie who was treated like I was more experienced, and a relatively experienced guy treated like a newbie. In the first case, I got injured. The second case was some of the dullest training I'd ever experienced. In neither case did I feel like I was treated fairly.
To me, badges of rank (belt and hakama) are a convenient way of indicating a man or woman's level of experience. When I'm at a seminar, I often seek out the people in hakamas 'cause I know I'll learn a lot from them. If we all had white belts, It'd be a luck of the draw proposition. OTOH, I don't only train with yudansha, and those ranked lower than me teach me a lot too.
Just some thoughts,