Grading’s and the Karate Belts

Beginners at the club wear a white belt, as you progress you can grade to attain belts in the following order.

How to tie your belt (Obi) - Click Here




9th Kyu

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8th Kyu

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7th Kyu

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6th Kyu

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5th Kyu

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4th Kyu

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3rd Kyu

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2nd Kyu

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1st Kyu

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1st Dan

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2nd Dan


3rd Dan

Grades after 3rd Dan are not attained through a grading, but awarded by Sensei for service to Karate


How The Grading Works

The grading takes place in front of a panel of Black Belts, for Brown/Black Belt grading’s the panel will comprise of senior black belt grades.

During the grading the panel will mark students on correct application of techniques, etiquette, spirit, effort and fitness, based on each students own physical ability.

There are three levels of pass for a grading or a failure.

1st class pass - Awarded to students who have exceeded the required standard and been excellent throughout

2nd class pass - Awarded to students who have met the required standard and performed well throughout

3rd class pass - Awarded to students who have fallen slightly below the required standard or made small errors

Fail - Students will fail the grading if they fall well below the standard or have made serious errors


Minimum Time Between Gradings

(assuming students are training regularly)

9th Kyu to 4th Kyu – Grading’s every 3 months or at Sensei discretion

3rd Kyu to 1st Dan – Grading’s every 6 months.

1st to 2nd Dan - min 2 years | 2nd to 3rd Dan - min 3 years | 3rd to 4th Dan - min 4 years etc


Senior Gradings

(2nd Kyu to 3rd Dan)

All persons grading at a senior grading who are 18 years old and under will be required to perform all applicable kicks at head height.

Those over 18 will be expected to perform their kicks at the maximum height they can kick, but in all cases the height will be above belt height.

Exception to these requirements will be that the student is unable to perform the requirement due to injury, incapacity or other genuine reason. This must be highlighted to your senior instructor prior to the grading, so the panel are aware and can take it in to account.

Dan (Black Belt) Gradings

All applicants must demonstrate their knowledge of techniques within the syllabus by teaching a small group of students. This will be assessed during the 6 months leading up to the grading.

The applicants age, physical and mental ability will be taken in to consideration during the grading examination with the result that parts of the syllabus may be changed, adapted or omitted. This is entirely at the discretion of Sensei.

At this stage all applicants must have a current First Aid and CRB certificate (juniors excluded).

Applicants will provide proof of participation in Kata and Kumite at competition level.

Applicants will be physically fit to a level to enable the completion of the grading to a high standard.

Applicants will notify Sensei 6 months in advance of the grading of their intention to grade. The applicant may be required to attend additional training sessions prior to the grading.

Junior Dan grade certificates will state "JUNIOR". All junior Dan grades will need their grade ratified at the age of 18, providing they are still training. If they stop training they will revert back to 1st Kyu and need to retake their senior Dan grade.

After attaining your Dan grade it is expected that you begin to look at ways in which you can reciprocate the time and effort the club, association and instructors have invested in you, to obtain your Dan grade status.

Guide - Steps to reach Black Belt

What is a Black Belt? - Find out Here