Frequently Asked Questions
As Sensei Rod was always fond of saying: "Your belt covers 2 inches of your butt. You've got to cover the rest yourself..."
But in all seriousness, the process is as follows:
For each belt level, we have a prescribed list of techniques (syllabus) that students must be proficient in in order to progress to their next belt, with each successive syllabus building on the ones preceding. A student's proficiency will be considered in concert with their having put in a sufficient number of mat hours, and displaying an appropriate attitude towards their training, their fellow students, their instructors, and the Dojo.
During classes, our instructors will keep an eye on each student's progress, and when they feel the student is ready to advance they will be invited to take a grading test. During a grading, the instructor(s) will run the student through the techniques for their level , and each level preceding it, along with demonstration of the ability to apply these techniques in a variety of self defense applications. If the student is successful, they receive their next belt. Each grading concludes with a thorough debriefing, where the instructor(s) will provide detailed and constructive feedback to assist with the continued growth and refinement of the student's skills.
As the student's rank increases, so too does the length of time and level of proficiency required to attain the next. IBK is not a belt factory, and we do not hand out black belts lightly. 5-8 years for achieving one's 1st Degree Black Belt (Shodan) is common for all but the most dedicated and adept students.