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Old 07-11-2003, 08:51 AM   #13
Dojo: Aikido of Midland
Location: Midland Texas
Join Date: Dec 2000
Posts: 1,652
The issue of dan rank can be complicated. At the lower ranks, it generally denotes a basic level of skill for learning-you are getting the fundamentals down. As your progress through the ranks your understanding of the details of why things work increases. As you get higher in rank your art becomes more unconsciously competent. However, the bad thing is by the time you get to the higher ranks your physical skills are starting to deteriorate with age. Can a 7th dan stand up to and beat a 4th dan is a useless question. It depends on the physical skills of each person. A 35 year old 4th dan who started martial arts at a young age is probably going to have a physical advantage over a 70 year old 7th or 8th dan from a speed, strength and endurance perspective. Generally, it is my observation that those who achieve high ranks do so with dedication and perserverance in the arts by making constant contributions and training. However, I have seen some elderly karateka that were pretty rough due to years of toughening their bodies. Just my observations.
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