- Black Belt Prestige
- High times
- Low times
- What happened?
- Page 5
- Children black belts
- Page 7
- Page 8
- Women black belts
- Physically or mentally disabled
- Over the hill black belts
- You can still do that which you do, because you do it.
- Is there something that can be done?
- Has the prestige of the black belt been lost forever?
- All Pages
Once prestige has been lost, it is difficult, if not impossible, to regain. Some of us in the martial arts community believe that the giving away of black belts has irreparably damaged the prestige of the black belt. The black belt is now considered just a reward for attendance and perseverance. It has little prestige.
Some of us believe that the “martial” part of the martial arts has been forgotten, or it has just been eliminated to make the martial arts more palatable and profitable. A martial art involves all aspects of hand-to-hand combat, including being able to physically fight, mentally compete against others, deal with the emotions that arise during life or death confrontations, doing anything that is necessary in a confrontation, dealing with the aftermath; and being able to do all these things while living a seemingly normal life. This is the life of a black belt. Black belts do not go to class to socialize and “work out”; they go to hone their fighting skills.
Some of us believe that before being awarded a black belt, all testers must meet a single set requirements and high standards, and that all testers must be capable of doing, and emotionally able to do, what may be required of black belt in a self-defense or combat situation. To us, the black belt is a goal that must attained, not a reward for trying to attain it. In a self-defense situation, black belts, either in their own defense or in defense of another, are legally held to a greater standard than ordinary citizens and, as such, they may be more morally, criminally, or civilly liable. A black belt better be a true black belt or his or actions on the street may end up with him or her being dead, in jail, or bankrupt.