Grading system


We follow the Japan Kokikai grading system for our adult students.


New students wear a white belt but do not hold a rank. A minimum period of training, including a minimum number of on-mat hours, will be required before their first grading.

White belts

6th Kyu, 5th Kyu, 4th Kyu, and 3rd Kyu ranked students all wear a white belt. Students take two years, minimum, to progress through these. Gradings are held at the dojo, or at special events, usually around April and October, of each year.

Brown belts

2nd Kyu and 1st Kyu students wear a brown belt. Gradings are one year apart, minimum. Gradings are held at national camps.

Black belts

1st Dan (shodan) and beyond are black belt ranks, where a hakama is also worn. 1st Kyu students will train for one year, minimum, to progress through to 1st Dan rank. Higher level dans take progressively longer.


We have a coloured belt system for the children:

Yellow, orange, red, green, blue, purple and brown belts are earned after at least six months of training since the last grading. Black belts require at least a year of training as a brown belt. Coloured tips can be earned between each grading.

ben zac colour belts



Your dojo leader will decide when you are eligible to apply for grading. Eligibility will be based on: mat hours; months of training; and maturity, intensity and mindset in your approach to practice. All gradings incur a fee. See your instructor for details and if you are grading, you can pay through the shop.