What Does A Black Belt Mean?

What does a black belt in the martial arts mean? 

Many view it as a technical license or a level of knowledge and skill, a symbol of arrival in the martial arts. 

What are some other understandings? 

Do they have different meanings in different arts? 

Is there a difference in a more Japanese focused meaning compared to the one often through of in the West? 

Certainly there is a implied level of skill in regard to a black belt- the 1st degree black belt. An understanding of the basics (kihon) of the martial arts, and an excellent command of ukemi. Martial arts heart- mushashin, respect, and how one carries themselves being aware of the tradition they now represent and are a part of is also implied. 

A black belt is a solid beginning in the martial arts- the student has built and cultivated a solid foundation to now begin exploring the arts, they are now truly a deshi of the tradition. Understanding that actions now represent that tradition, and the over-all tradition of the martial arts in the eyes of others. 

A black belt as an achievement or something to live up to each and every day. 

Something that is awarded, or something that one becomes and continues to become through training?

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Located in Westchester New York, the Bujinkan Shinmyoken Dojo is a martial arts training group founded in 2005 with the aim of coming together as martial arts friends to study the Japanese martial art of Masaaki Hatsumi through the lessons of the Bujinkan dojo.

As friends (buyu) we come together to grow, learn, and share our individual potential in this wonderful martial art.

Questions, comments, feedback, and inquiries may be emailed to the group here: BujinkanShinmyoken@gmail.com.