Life is about progress. What make us excited is to move forward grow and learn, reach the next level. This is why I think the IBJJF( international Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu federation) belt system is very appropriate for the kids. While it does not lead to a black belt in 2 years (which does not make any sense to me. A belt has to mean something otherwise it is only a piece of fabric around your waist.) It allow the kids to reach regular step stones on the way to the next belt every month or so.
The use a stripe system allow us instructor to reward the students as they master different skills during their learning process. Once the 4th stripe is given and the skill requirements met for the next level, then, we can promote the student to the next belt.
For example in Discovery bay BJJ I am looking for:
- First stripe = Basic mobility, know the escape techniques from each bottom position
- Second stripe = Basic of controlling an opponent on the ground being on top position
- Third stripes = Basic of closed guard control and sweeping + 1 take down
- Fourth stripe = Basic guard passing, basic sweeping, basic transition from a controlling position to another
The stripes can be awarded every 20 classes. However the instructor reserve the right to postpone the promotion if he think the necessary skills are not mastered. Of course in such a case, the Instructor will guide the student so pay closer attention what need to be learned and guide him.
The Students, during the training period leading to the fourth stripe, learn a set of techniques he can use anyway he likes to perform those simple actions: Escape, reverse/sweep, pass the guard, control as they are the elements they will face the most in any sparring/self-defense situation.