I know everyone has been anxiously awaiting to learn the next Ancient Black Belt secret so let's get right to it.
Ancient Black Belt Secret #2 - Rank doesn't matter.
Now let me qualify that statement just a little. When I say rank doesn't matter, I am specifically referring to a person's ability to fight.
It really boils down to two statements:
1. A lower ranked person can beat a higher ranked person if they are bigger, tougher, and can utilize the skills they have in an advantageous way.
2. Just because you can beat a higher ranked person does NOT mean you deserve to be promoted.
I feel that first statement is pretty self explanatory. Even though the lower ranked person probably has less experience and a narrower range of technique, it is still very possible to beat someone higher ranked. Maybe the lower ranked person has been training like a mad man and is in top form while the higher ranked person has had to take a month off to attend to some personal issues.
Maybe the lower ranked person has developed an earth shattering roundhouse kick and manages to land it repeatedly. Whatever the reason, this emphasizes the point that a fight is chaos and anything can happen. We train to be as prepared as possible for a fight, but at the end of the day, we have to realize that there are elements of chance and luck involved in any fight.
Now lets address that second statement about how you should feel if you beat someone higher ranked than you. It is an amazing feeling when you finally submit someone who has probably made you struggle to survive up to this point. However, just because you finally got a peace of someone higher ranked than you doesn't mean it's time for you to get your black belt.
Promotions and rank should be about more than just the ability to fight. Now don't get me wrong, the ability to fight is a HUGE part of attaining rank, but it is also about your breath and depth of knowledge and your ability to pass it on.
You might be an amazing athlete who can pummel your opponent's into submission, but unless you have a full understanding of the techniques and training methods of your style, hold off on asking Sensei for your black belt.
Iron Forged Martial Arts
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Colorado Springs, CO 80909