How do you pursue rank/promotion in your marital art of choice?
Recently I approached my new Judo coach to ask about testing for my Yellow Belt. I was essentially already that rank in my previous school, but that school only used white, brown, and black belts for ranking adults, so I was still a white belt.
My coach listened to my story and basically said that, after I get some more competition experience, they would just test me for green or brown belt.
I was torn by this. On one hand, I appreciate that they think I am good enough to test for this higher rank soon. On the other hand I still have a childlike fascination with getting a pretty new colored belt... even if my rank would literally not change in the eyes of USJF. On a third bizzar mutant hand I should be worried a lot less about rank and promotion and a lot more about getting better a Judo, especially after a rather lengthy layoff that has obviously dulled the few skills that I had developed so far.
What is your opinion of rank, and what training philosophy do you try and adhere to when it comes to rank and promotion? Do you strive to earn a new belt or rank (depending on your martial art of choice) or do you ignore rank and let the promotions come as they may?
For those without formal rank in their martial arts: do you think having a measurable progress that acknowleges your mastery of certain techniques at a particular level or a particular degree of competition success would be helpful?
tl;dr: Whatch think about rank in martial arts?