MUSASHI MIYAMOTO THEORIES APPLIED TO THE BELTS OF KARATE
White belt: Dream & Potential - Purity
This represents PURITY. Being new, unaware of the requirements of Seireikai Karate and lacking in experience of it, the white belt’s heart is said to be full of hope. From this hope, sprouts the first enthusiasm to train and learn.
Orange Belt: Stability - Earth
The level is associated to EARTH (soil). The major focus is understanding the physical base. Power and progress are built upon a solid foundation. At this stage, a lifestyle and vision of ambition, gratitude, persistence and vitality should be adopted. Every student must establish a commitment to attending classes. There can be an internal battle for each individual in overcoming self-defeat and stubbornness that resists the desire to attend lessons. Students at this level should be enthusiastic in training, finding treasures and dreams of greater things to come.
Blue Belt: Fluidity, Adaptability - Water
Blue, the symbolic color of WATER. This level develops a basic ability to adapt and react fluidly. Just as water adapts to the shape of whichever object is holding it. Adaptability grows through kumite (sparring). The student learns to adapt karate to best suit his physical strengths and weaknesses. Development for a strong body, especially in the torso and arms takes place. Special attention is paid to training push-ups using the fore fists and finger tips and strengthen their flexibility (physical and mental), which can be achieved through regular stretching. Maintain enthusiasm and the desire to never give up. Being able to recognize difficulties in your journey and learn to appropriately deal with them, this is essential. Stay calm in the midst of a raging battle (be it during kumite or your internal battle), the spirit and mind of a true Karate student shall remain unshaken.
Yellow Belt: Assertion - Fire
This level represents FIRE. Apart from concentrating purely on physical skills (such as balance, stability, eye/hand co-ordination, and general technical ability), Yellow belt requires serious consideration to the psychological aspects of training perception, awareness, assertion, manifesting will-power. Students are expected to apply their intellect and awareness in coordinating the basic physical concepts of karate with immense potential. Be confident in your abilities, be decisive in your actions. Refine your karate knowledge and learn to perform movements in a pure and correct way. Fears are overcome by confronting them confidently.
Green Belt: Emotion/Sensitivity - Wind
This level represents WIND. Green is first level of the senior grades. The student is now more aware of their unique discriminating intelligence and the importance of benevolence and compassion. Realizing that power without wisdom and compassion is destructive, dangerous and callous. Having excellence in basic techniques and movement patterns. One learns to combine technique with speed and strength that has been developed through hard training. The student should be developing ZANSHIN, where the body acts perfectly without conscious effort. One should work on the power aspect of karate and should be able to demonstrate this power.
Brown belt: Practicality & Creativity - The Void
This level, represents the VOID. This is a very important level in training which should be undertaken in a serious, responsible, mature frame of mind. Where everything that the student has learned has now become part of their being. The student should be very strong and very comfortable in the execution of all techniques. the ability to control a junior opponent through timing, distance, and sensitivity. Every brown belt must brace themselves with a brave heart and a will of iron, have faith in the beauty of the unknown that lies ahead. Improvements in own technique are gained through challenges. One can then truly see if one’s training has been effective. Learn to overcome through continuous hard training and moving on to the next belt level.
“Bathed in sweat, devoted entirely to what I am doing, in training sessions I transcend both life and death.” – Mas Oyama.