The Belt Rankings of Judo


Hey, whats up guys? Preston here with another
episode of Grappler Going Abroad. Today I’m answering another one of my subscribers questions,
again for my buddy Shirod. A couple of weeks ago he asked me a question on one of my videos
about my first Judo competition, which I answered that question, the other question he asked
is “How do the Judo ranks work?” That’s a pretty difficult question, because unlike
Brazilian Jiu-jitsu, Judo runs on the non-profit system, there generally is some variance between
schools with how they do their belt rankings. But normally on paper it’s done by the Kyu-Dan
ranking system, like they use in Karate and what they do in most traditional Japanese
Martial Art schools, they use it in some Korean Martial Arts as well. But generally from what
I’ve seen with USA Judo, USJA, USJF they have two different sets of belt ranking systems.
One for Juniors and then they have one for Seniors. The way the Juniors work is you go
from White, to Yellow, to Orange, to Green, to Blue, to Purple. Then you have 3 levels
of Brown, then you go to Shodan, 1st degree Black Belt. With Seniors they cut out some
of those middle belts. So you go from White, to yellow, to orange, to green, straight to
brown, there’s three levels of brown, and then you test for your shodan. Some of these
organizations are a little bit ambiguous about what their curriculums are when you’re testing
for these belts. The USJA they have their curriculum posted online, so you can actually
see what you’re going to be testing with. It’s a very useful tool. USA Judo doesn’t
have any of those guidelines for their curriculum posted online. So USA Judo schools can be
a little bit ambiguous with their curriculum. I studied the USJA stuff for my USA Judo test
and sometimes it hits and sometimes it misses. But then again, if you weren’t ready to test,
then your sensei wouldn’t be testing you in the first place. So don’t worry about it too
much when you’re testing. In terms of testing for Shodan, it’s a little bit different. There’s
a mandatory 3 year waiting period to test from Ikkyu, which is first degree brown, the
last level of brown, to shodan. That’s for non-competitors. So if you aren’t actively
competing in Judo, there’s a mandatory 3 year waiting period. If you’re a competitor and
you know, you beat people your level or above, a few people, that cuts it down to like a
year, year and a half. If you have a lot of points gathered from beating people who are
your rank or higher then you can cut your testing period from ikkyu to shodan down to
6 months. So black belt can have leeway. You can also get points from doing Nage-No-Kata
competitions as well to kind of speed up your black belt testing process. Usually they reward
you competing in Shiai, less in Kata. But yeah, that’s my break down on Judo’s ranking
system. I know it’s a little bit more ambiguous and a little bit more confusing than they
Brazilian Jiu-jitsu where you have White, Blue, Purple, Brown, and then Black. But you
know, it’s something that’s been kind of traditional here in the United States for a while. But
that’s all I got for you guys today. If you like this video, please like it, comment on
it, share it. If you want to see more videos, please subscribe. My name is Preston and this
has been Grappler Going Abroad.

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