RANK REQUIREMENTS AND PROMOTIONS

Promotions are for hard work, dedication and perseverance. They are earned - not purchased or "given". They represent milestones in training. High standards are applied and met by all who are promoted and the bond deepens for the student in budo.

RANK TIME REQUIREMENTS AND GRADING SYSTEM

ADULT RANKING

Shisei Ryu has an adult rank system which consists of eight (8) kyu (below black belt) grades and eight (8) dan (black belt grades). The kyu grading "cycle" is approximately every 12 - 14 weeks with requirements taught and proficiency graded on this cycle. There is typically a sixteen week cycle between Ikyu brown (1st kyu) and Shodan (1st degree black). Yudansha (Black Belts) are graded on technical proficiency, time in grade, time on the mat and individual accomplishment that contributes to the art overall. Times can be longer or shorter as required at the discretion of the licensed Sensei. These decisions are made in the best interest of the dojo and the Kai.

Please read this explanation of ranking/titles

LICENSED TEACHERS

Licensed Sensei are allowed to promote to the grade specified on their individual Shisei Ryu Kai Instructor's License (which is normally two grades below their rank) and must also have the Kaicho seal applied to the "Licensed to Teach" portion of their menjo/rank certificate.

Teaching titles are granted as earned and bestowed via the "Sho-go System"-- It is important to realize that these titles/ranks are much more difficult to achieve than the conventional Dan grades and are not automatically assigned with rank or seniority. The holder of these titles must also have made significant contributions to the organization and budo at large.

Renshi (may be awarded to a 5th Dan over 35 years old).

The character "Ren" means "polished, tempered" and "shi" means "person". Thus Renshi indicates a "polished instructor" or expert. Renshi may be awarded at the rank of 5th Dan or above.

Kyoshi (may be awarded to an 7th Dan over 45 years old).

The "Kyo" in Kyoshi means "professor" or "philosophy". Therefore, Kyoshi equals a "professor" capable of teaching the philosophy of the martial arts. Kyoshi may be awarded at the rank of 7th Dan and above.

Hanshi (may be awarded to an 8th Dan over 50 years old).

The "Han" in Hanshi means "example, model" and indicates "a teacher that can serve as an ideal model for others", or a senior master. Hanshi may be awarded at the rank of 8th and above.

This also means that any grade from 5th Dan and above may only receive an award of Renshi, first, or none at all.

Teaching titles are bestowed by the Kaiso only.

Teaching licenses re-issued yearly. Licensed teacher/sensei must attend at least one (1) Kaiso-directed seminar per year to maintain Instructor/Sensei currency. The main purpose of this seminar is standardization/evaluation and creating an environment where colleagues can share information, ideas and techniques. Research will also be conducted during annual seminars.

NON-LICENSED YUDANSHA

Yudansha who are not granted a license to teach simply have the Kaicho seal applied to "License to Teach Not Granted" portion of their rank certificate. This denotes a technical grading, not a teaching and technical grade. Not all Yudansha are granted the right to teach, nor desire it; these are "kyoren", 2nd-3rd Dan yudansha that are not instructors. The licensing, or the lack thereof carries no stigma, it simply denotes Yudansha who desire to teach, or who are certified, versus those who simply train for other reasons such as technical proficiency, do not operate dojos, or teach and promote students.


KYU  

8th Kyu White Belt    Beginner

7th Kyu Yellow Belt    12 -14 wks

5th Kyu Green Belt    4-6 months

4th Kyu Blue Belt    8-9 months

3rd Kyu Brown Belt    10-12 months

 
 

2nd Kyu Brown Belt    14-16 months

1st Kyu Brown Belt    16-18 months

 
DAN  
 
Shodan - 1st Degree Black Belt    20-24 months    16 yrs of age
 

Nidan - 2nd Degree Black Belt    3-4 years     17 yrs of age

 
Sandan - 3rd Degree Black Belt    5-6 years       20 yrs of age
 

Yondan - 4th Degree Black Belt  8-10 years     24 yrs of age

 

Godan - 5th Degree Black Belt  12-16 years      28 yrs of age

 

Rokudan - 6th Degree Black Belt  (Shihan)   18-22 years    35 yrs of age

 

Shichidan - 7th Degree Black Belt (Shihan)    25 + years    45 yrs of age

 

Hachidan - 8th Degree Black Belt (Shihan)   30 + years    52 yrs of age

8th Dan "Kaiso" (Founder)

Ceremonial Belt

Terminal Grade

Shisei Ryu Aikibudo Kai utilizes the modern "Kyu/Dan" ranking system, however instructor titles are granted using the "Sho-go" system.

JUNIOR RANKING

Students under 14 years of age are awarded "junior rank". They wear a colored belt with a white stripe along its center.

Upon reaching 16 years of age, they may test for adult ranking. There are some exceptions to this guideline.

JR GRADES JR KYU  

  Total Time    

White

   Jr 9th Kyu  Beginner
Yellow    Jr 8th Kyu  6-8 weeks
Orange    Jr 7th Kyu 10-12 weeks
Green     Jr 6th Kyu 4-6 months
Blue    Jr 5th Kyu  8-9 months
Purple    Jr 4th Kyu     10-12 months
Brown    Jr 3rd Kyu 14-16 months
Brown    Jr 2nd Kyu 16-18 months    
Brown    Jr 1st  Kyu 20-24 months

(Black Belt) JR GRADES  
Maximum  age 16 years of age

JR DAN  

 
  ONE WHITE STRIPE    1st Dan - Junior Grade

   Level I

24-36 months

10-12 yrs of age

 TWO WHITE STRIPES    2nd Dan - Junior Grade

   Level II

4-5  years

12-14 yrs of age

 

RANKINGS AND WHAT IT MEANS

ORIGIN OF MODERN KYU/DAN SYSTEM

VERY GOOD PAPER ON RANKING ORIGINS

WIKIPEDIA

MENKYO SYSTEM  EXPLAINED IN DETAIL

THE SHOGO RANKING/TITLE SYSTEM

Students and Sensei receive primary rank certification from the Shisei Kai

    

The 12 -14 week "testing cycle" is based on two, one-and-a-half to two-hour class sessions per week. 

Times for promotion/proficiency testing may be longer, or shorter depending on specific dojo situations, instructor capabilities, judgment and of course student performance. Ranks are granted and awarded on ability, growth and overall attitude, not only for "time on the mat". Breaks in training can effect time to reach future ranks.


Basic copy of the handbook and Shisei Ryu theory

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