The belt in martial arts typically symbolizes your rank and progression in martial arts. Different martial arts styles each offer their own belt or grading system. Some styles use patches, sashes, colored shirts, etc. But almost all of them still are a way to identify your current martial arts progression.

Realistically – the belts do not have any bearing on the way one can defend themselves. Just because someone is a black belt in Karate does not mean they can defend themselves better then a white belt in Judo. What matters is the type of training you are focusing on; not what that belt might symbolize.

Some martial arts schools don’t even both using a belt, but most traditional martial arts schools do.

One of my favorite ways of viewing the belt system is that when you have achieved a black belt, you are now competent enough to actually start training. Before hand, you are just learning the movements and some principles. After you have reached your black belt, you can start learning the meaning behind the movements and the principles and then start applying them on a higher level with greater understanding.

Regardless of how your martial arts style views the belt system, the most important thing is to keep learning and training. The belts and progression will come, just focus on what is in front of you and the rest will fall into place.

Filed under: Martial Arts Training Tips

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