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Old 02-09-2006, 12:23 PM   #1
mattnowak
Dojo: Soshinkan Dojo, Burbank, IL---Aikido Association of America, Chicago, IL
Location: Chicago, IL
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Black Belt????

How long does it ususally take to to get a black belt?
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Old 02-09-2006, 12:26 PM   #2
justin
Location: swansea wales
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Re: Black Belt????

one of those how long is a piece of string, so many variables impossible to answer,

how often do you train, how good are you, how good is your instructor, how good are your fellow students who's help you will need, and hundreds more that dont spring to mind right now.

why do you ask if you dont mind me asking
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Old 02-09-2006, 01:02 PM   #3
Dajo251
Dojo: Aikido Downtown
Location: Rhode Island
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Re: Black Belt????

It takes as long as it takes for you to be ready for it.....

Dan Hulley
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Old 02-09-2006, 01:12 PM   #4
Qatana
 
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Re: Black Belt????

how much time do you have?

Q
http://www.aikidopetaluma.com/
www.knot-working.com

"It is not wise to be incautious when confronting a little smiling bald man"'- Rule #1
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Old 02-09-2006, 01:16 PM   #5
ccain85
Dojo: Chicago Aikikai
Location: Chicago,IL
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Re: Black Belt????

like everyone else has already said, it is up to you, your instructor, and how much time you are capable of putting into your training. please remember though, receiving your black belt should not be your goal. just enjoy your training and all will come in due time. shodan, first degree, is nothing more than a good understanding of the basics. i have had people tell me, once you reach shodan, then it is time to start your training.

To win 100 victories in 100 battles is not the highest skill. To subdue the enemy without fighting is the highest skill.
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Old 02-09-2006, 01:18 PM   #6
Aiki LV
Dojo: VEGAS VALLEY AIKIDO
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Re: Black Belt????

There is not one definitive answer. Among the factors involved are the association, frequency of training, understanding of the art, etc. Ask a dan rank in your dojo how long it took them. That might give you an idea of how long it takes in your dojo.
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Old 02-09-2006, 01:25 PM   #7
Simbo
Location: Carbondale
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Re: Black Belt????

I personally like "it depends on how much you pay for shipping" or the story about the student that askes that and the teacher says "the average is 5-7 years." To which the student replies, "What if I practice all day, every day?" and the teacher says "then 10 years." But of course I'm a sarcastic smartass.

You'd be surprised at how much aikido philosophy you can pick up on at the end of the party when there's just a couple drunk sempai and you.
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Old 02-09-2006, 01:49 PM   #8
akiy
 
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Re: Black Belt????

http://www.aikiweb.com/polls/results.html?poll_id=61

-- Jun

Please help support AikiWeb -- become an AikiWeb Contributing Member!
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Old 02-10-2006, 06:48 AM   #9
crbateman
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Re: Black Belt????

How long does it take you to learn?
How long does it take you to grow 6 feet tall?

The answer is different for everyone.

And you don't "get" a black belt. You EARN one, then you BECOME one, then you ACT LIKE one.
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Old 02-10-2006, 06:52 AM   #10
Edwin Neal
Dojo: Ronin
Location: Henderson, North Carolina
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Re: Black Belt????

what i have to be 6 feet tall? man this is gonna suck... i stopped growing a long time ago and i don't have any of that miracle grow stuff...

Edwin Neal


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Old 02-10-2006, 06:52 AM   #11
Larry Feldman
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Re: Black Belt????

The 3 big factors are how quickly you learn (tough to change), how difficult or robust the test is (you have no input) and how often you practice - the one thing you can effect.
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Old 02-10-2006, 07:23 AM   #12
ian
 
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Re: Black Belt????

I have an amusing scheme for students at my club: Since 'wearing a hakama' is seen as prestigious, I don't let anyone wear a hakama until they no longer ask 'when can I wear a hakama'.

Similarly, many people ask 'when can I wear a black belt' - I rarely hear 'how long will it take to get to 2nd kyu, or nidan'. The status associated with a blackbelt is such that I think someone who obtains one should realise the effort (not time) required, and by that stage the prestige of the black-belt pales into nothingness compared with the actual learning experience required to get that belt.

Thus, to answer your question; the time it takes you to get a black belt is the time it takes you detatch any importance to it as a belt.

(sorry if this sounds condescending - not my intention)

---understanding aikido is understanding the training method---
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Old 02-10-2006, 08:24 AM   #13
mickeygelum
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Re: Black Belt????

..Here to Walmart....................10 minutes..
..Out of Vehicle and into store...2 minutes..
..Belt rack to register................1 minute..
..Showing up at class with a gold belt buckle on your Obi.....PRICELESS

...It takes as long as it takes...be patient and train diligently...it will come quicker than you thought....
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Old 02-10-2006, 10:43 AM   #14
djalley
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Re: Black Belt????

Quote:
Clark Bateman wrote:
And you don't "get" a black belt. You EARN one, then you BECOME one, then you ACT LIKE one.
In my opinion, I think you have the order exactly backwards.
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Old 02-10-2006, 11:18 AM   #15
Edwin Neal
Dojo: Ronin
Location: Henderson, North Carolina
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Re: Black Belt????

yeah if you act like a black belt then you probably ain't... because i don't associate any special way of acting to a black belt... you're still the same person...

Edwin Neal


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Old 02-10-2006, 11:22 AM   #16
justinmaceachern
Dojo: St. george
Location: new Brunswick
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Re: Black Belt????

I can give you a clear answer, it will take from now until then.
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Old 02-10-2006, 11:57 AM   #17
Jorx
Dojo: Pärnu Aikidoclub Singitai
Location: Pärnu, Estonia
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Re: Black Belt????

Usually it takes as long as it takes to get to the nearest martial arts store.
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Old 02-10-2006, 12:44 PM   #18
ESimmons
Location: Birmingham, AL
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Re: Black Belt????

I don't understand why martial artists feel the need to get defensive and/or smart when asked how long it takes to get a black belt.

When someone wants to know how long it takes to get a bachelor's degree, we tell them generally 4 years, although it can vary, depending on the degree, how heavy your class load is, whether or not you pass all your classes, what school you attend, and what your degree is in.

We don't smartly tell them that their goal should not be the degree itself but rather to learn their field, or that they can purchase a fake degree on ebay, or even tell them that a degree is just a piece of paper and in itself means nothing. But when asked about a black belt, we automatically assume the inquirer is an imbecile for even asking such a question and proceed to talk down to him.

You can see from the poll posted on the subject, the general consensus seems to be anywhere from 3-6 years, so I suppose a good answer would be about four-and-a-half years, and of course it varies from place to place.
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Old 02-10-2006, 01:30 PM   #19
Karen Wolek
Dojo: Kingston Aikido
Location: New York
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Re: Black Belt????

Quote:
Mathew Nowak wrote:
How long does it ususally take to to get a black belt?
Looks like you go to an AAA dojo. Here are the test requirements for the kyu ranks.

http://www.hal-pc.org/~boha/aaakyu.htm

and the dan tests:

http://www.hal-pc.org/~boha/aaadan.htm

Maybe these will help!

I'm USAF-ER and the average time to blackbelt is about 7 years, I think.

Last edited by Karen Wolek : 02-10-2006 at 01:39 PM.

Karen
"Try not. Do...or do not. There is no try." - Master Yoda
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Old 02-10-2006, 02:06 PM   #20
MaryKaye
Dojo: Seattle Ki Society
Location: Seattle
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Re: Black Belt????

Although my dojo's web site says "five years with consistent practice" my experience is that my teachers are unwilling to test anyone more than once per year, which makes six years a minimum. The four people I know who have or are about to make shodan took between 7 and 11 years each, but there were some injuries involved in the longer times. (My dojo tends to have older students and this may influence length of time to the black belt. Older students tend to bounce back more slowly from injury, as well as having more outside commitments.)

I am told that even though the formal test criteria are the same, the time to black belt for our organization in Japan is dramatically lower--a university student who begins as a freshman can expect to have a black belt by the time they graduate. I have no first-hand experience of this, however.

Mary Kaye
(who would like to have a black belt after six years, but isn't counting on it)
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Old 02-10-2006, 02:57 PM   #21
Josh Reyer
 
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Re: Black Belt????

Quote:
Mary Kuhner wrote:
I am told that even though the formal test criteria are the same, the time to black belt for our organization in Japan is dramatically lower--a university student who begins as a freshman can expect to have a black belt by the time they graduate. I have no first-hand experience of this, however.
As I mentioned in the "Dan" thread, while the shodan requirements in various Aikikai schools seem more or less equally comprehensive, there's a lot of variety in the kyuu requirements, allowing those in Japan to fly through the kyuu ranks faster than their counterparts in the U.S.

Another factor is testing schedules. When I went to Twin Cities Aikido Center, a USAF dojo, there were of course attendance requirements, but in addition to that seminars with Akira Tohei-shihan were only once a year. If you didn't have the attendance requirements, or if you didn't quite feel ready, you either had to weight another year, or go to a seminar in another Midwestern city.

In contrast, Aikikai Hombu Dojo in Japan holds tests every other month. My current dojo holds tests every four months, and my instructor holds the right to conduct tests up to sandan, which makes things a lot more convenient.

Josh Reyer

The lyf so short, the crafte so longe to lerne,
Th'assay so harde, so sharpe the conquerynge...
- Chaucer
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Old 02-10-2006, 03:21 PM   #22
ikkitosennomusha
Join Date: Mar 2003
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Re: Black Belt????

Quote:
Daniel Hulley wrote:
It takes as long as it takes for you to be ready for it.....
This is the best answer but if you want a more helpful reply, it honestly depends on how much time you put into it. In general, training 2-3 times a week should take 4-5 years on average. This is from my experience only as this could vary from dojo to organization.
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Old 02-10-2006, 08:11 PM   #23
Roban
Location: Glasgow
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Re: Black Belt????

When I first started Aikido, I thought the very same thing - how long to my black belt? Now I'm getting into it, I don't really care about all that stuff way into the future, I'm enjoying my Aikido and I just look forward to one grading at a time, just as a check that I'm doing OK.

It's not about belts (although it's nice to have a "badge" of your achievements) I feel it's more about having the mindset and the patience to get into a new way of life.

So far, for me, Aikido IS a life changing experience and I'm just letting it all wash over me If I find myself with a black belt, I'll thank the people who helped me get there and then just continue on learning

Don't rush - savour and enjoy!

Rob
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Old 02-11-2006, 05:54 AM   #24
Mark Freeman
Dojo: Dartington
Location: Devon
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Re: Black Belt????

When I first started I drew up a chart with target dates for all my belts up to and beyond Shodan. I managed to 'hit' my target right up to 1st Kyu. Then I woke up to myself
I finally realised that practicing aikido was like 'practicing aikido', if you focus on the the end goal happening too quickly ( wanting to throw? ) then there is tension and effort involved. If you want the technique to happen effortlessly then you need to focus on the moment by moment movement. So I threw away the targets, and just started to enjoy every practice for what it was 'practice'. Eventually the day came to test for Shodan
Then the real practice started!

regards,
Mark

Success is having what you want. Happiness is wanting what you have.
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Old 02-11-2006, 10:17 AM   #25
Sonja2012
 
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Re: Black Belt????

Quote:
And you don't "get" a black belt. You EARN one, then you BECOME one, then you ACT LIKE one.
How would you expect a black belt to act? Should there really be a difference between a shodan and a mudansha in behaviour And if so, what should be different? Or shouldn´t everybody (at least try and) act like a black belt?
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