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Are Belts Bullshido?

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    Are Belts Bullshido?

    From doing a little reading I am under the impression that the 'belt system' in many MA came along only fairly recently. Has the introduction of belts come about due to a much greater student:teacher ratio and/or as a means of other students identifying who is more senior?

    I did MT for several years - no belts required. You fight/spar the other guy and the best man on the night wins.

    I did KF for 6 months - no sparring allowed, everyone had a belt, large classes I knew about 10 out of the 40-50 people there on any given night. I ran screaming and they wanted me to pay out the remaining 6 months on the contract.

    I am now doing KF at another place (8 months now) - sparring allowed, no belt required. I know every student at the school (total of about 12-15). Usually about 6-8 students on any given night.

    If every student knows each other (and at what level they are at) is there any need for a belt?

    #2
    Belts are there for two reasons:

    1) To give the person practicing a sense of accomplishment and to help them continue to work on (because let's be honest, people are lazy).

    2) To suck the money from your hard working body.

    It might be both, it might be one. Either way the belt may not be bullshido, its the reason behind it that matters.
    "did Phrost just call me a 'bitch'?"-Omega

    "The collective IQ of bullshido was reduced with the departure of Wastrel. It further dropped due to the retention of (Serious Harm)."
    - The all knowing Dochter

    "but like, it's possible to develop such a level of reflex that you can literally detect someones movements through sensitivity, and block without even thinking"-Apostol

    That's the amazing thing about Ninjas, for sneeky cocksuckers, they are all over the place, like dog shit on your shoe.-Ronin69

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      #3
      Belts aren't bullshido in themselves. An emphasis on belt testing, belt testing fees, status symbolism, the awarding of belts to unqualified students, and making kids go "Look ma, I'm a black belt!" is bullshido.

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by Aesopian
        Belts aren't bullshido in themselves. An emphasis on belt testing, belt testing fees, status symbolism, the awarding of belts to unqualified students, and making kids go "Look ma, I'm a black belt!" is bullshido.
        Bullshido is teaching false techniques (your kick can sever a torso)

        Mcdojo is the emphasis on money


        And belts are not either of them

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          #5
          Belts are useful, when you go to other schools and work with other people then they will put you with someone of a similar rank/experience.

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            #6
            I have been brandeissansoowned. :tard:

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              #7
              Wow, I was wondering when they were going to bring up this subject again. No, belts are neither bullshido or Mcdojo as Brandei said. What's bullshido or Mcdojo about it is how some school puts people up on a mantle just because of their rank, charge you up the yin yang for them and/or give you belts just because you pay for them and you've been there long enough.

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                #8
                I am not too sure on the exact time/place of the introduction of the belt system, I was pretty sure it was Kano who first brought the grades into place and Funakoshi who brought the system into karate...but I could be wrong.

                The only main thing I see for a belt system is that for many people, they need to have some measure or mark/reward of their progression in order to continue on practicing anything. A lot of times expertise/skill and other direct benefits either do not seem to increase noticeably enough for people or plateau out for sporadic periods, a belt system pretty much is a direct physical representation of progress (in an ideal world).

                Another thing I can see is it does help give you a way to measure the quality of a school's instruction by having a visual identifier to the supposed skill of a practicioner. You can see what new people, intermediate, and advanced people have to offer in a school based on the belts.

                As for the McDojo/Bullshido/Belt Factory abuses of the belt system, obviously like most other things, anyone can ruin something that is a good idea when not abused...and a lot of times the true intent of a belt system is hard for instructors who want to run a school as a business to stick to. I was reading over a book of Peter Urban's not too long ago where he specifically discussed a student whom it took 7 years to promote as a brown belt. Actually here is the excerpt:

                "It took me seven years of hard work to get 'Jerome', a bubonicly {sp} lazy student to the level of brown belt. In reality, to this day, I don't know why I accept him as a student at my dojo. He used poor health, asthma, perpetual poverty, and a 'Woe is me!' story as his inane self-defense mechanism. I deliberately refused to promote him many times, and he was left out of the dojo's social events until he had graduated from high school. I convinced him that Shakespeare knew one thing just like the rest of us, i.e., the twenty-six letters of the alphabet. The rest was up to Shakespeare himself. I succeeded with Jerome because there is a lot to be said for the tough-love therapy which is popular today"

                Peter Urban may have been a bit looney at times, and granted the peak time he was teaching was a bit different (economics/viability of running an MA school), but if most schools shared his viewpoints on the belt system and specifically had no qualms about denying promotion of a student, then there would be a lot less question about the bullshido-ness/validity of a belt system.
                Last edited by sherekahn; 10/30/2004 12:38pm, .

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                  #9
                  Belts don't mean shit outside of the places that you train at. They are not necessarily bullshido though, good instructors can use a belt system to motivate students to reach their goals.

                  However, I am under the impression that for 80% of the people that hold them, belts are bullshit. Black belts don't scare me, especially when the person tries to intimidate with the black belt. (Unless they are black belts in BJJ)

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                    #10
                    Originally posted by Thaiboxerken
                    Belts don't mean shit outside of the places that you train at. They are not necessarily bullshido though, good instructors can use a belt system to motivate students to reach their goals.

                    However, I am under the impression that for 80% of the people that hold them, belts are bullshit. Black belts don't scare me, especially when the person tries to intimidate with the black belt. (Unless they are black belts in BJJ)

                    *whip whtack!!!

                    scared now aren't you!!!

                    :adora:

                    bow down to the whipping black belt!!


                    *whtack snap!!!!!

                    :5bullwhip

                    Comment


                      #11
                      What else am I supposed to grab to roll the guy out of side control?
                      Originally posted by The Wastrel
                      I think the forum's traditionally light-handed approach to moderation has become untenable.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by Shumagorath
                        What else am I supposed to grab to roll the guy out of side control?
                        I would tell you but you're the type that would do it...




                        FAG!!!

                        :thebirdma

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                          #13
                          Originally posted by omega
                          I would tell you but you're the type that would do it...




                          FAG!!!

                          :thebirdma

                          LOLOLOLOLO
                          Tough is not how you act, tough is how you train.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            He's missing one so he didn't know.
                            "Its not important to be strong, its just important not to be weak."

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Ouch. That must burn. Tsssss.
                              "Prison is for rapists, thieves and murderers. If you lock someone up for smoking a plant that makes them happy, you're the fucking criminal." - Joe Rogan

                              El Guapo says dance!

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