In general, we have chosen to follow the Kodokan system of judo. However, we have also chosen to focus our studies on the more technical, traditional, and self-defense aspects of the art, rather than on competition. We do include various forms of randori or "free practice" in our classes, which allow students to test and hone their skills, but we are not concerned with aquiring points or winning trophies.
So while our students are certainly free and welcome to participate in tournaments if they wish, we do not require it for any rank advancement.
Additionally, we consider not just the skills and abilities of our students, but also the contributions of strong judo leaders and teachers when awarding rank.
The following represents the average requirements in terms of hours, years, and techniques. All criteria for promotion remain at the discretion of the grading sensei and are subject to change. With respect to Gokyu no waza requirements, students should concentrate on ashi waza, koshi waza, and te waza for their requirements. Study of sutemi waza should be of secondary importance and its practice will be limited.
Red & White
Yonkyu — All ukemi waza (falling); 1st kyo; 2 pins & escapes
Sankyu — All of the above, plus: 3 throws of 2nd kyo; 5 pins & escapes
Nikyu — All of the above, plus: 1st & 2nd kyo complete; 5 pins & escapes; 5 basic chokes; general vocabulary & history
Ikkyu — All of the above, plus: 3rd kyo complete; 5 arm bars
Shodan — 1st, 2nd, 3rd kyo; 5 chokes; 5 arm bars; 1st, 2nd & 3rd section of Nage no Kata
Nidan — 1st, 2nd, 3rd & 4th kyo; 1st, 2nd, 3rd & 4th sections of Nage no Kata; 1st section of Katame no Kata; advanced knowledge of newaza; knowledge of basic teaching skills
Sandan — Complete gokyu; complete Nage no Kata; 1st & 2nd sections of Katame no Kata; advanced knowledge of newaza; advanced teaching skills
Yondan — Complete gokyu; complete Nage no Kata; complete Katame no Kata; advanced knowledge of newaza; advanced teaching skills
Godan — Knowledge of Ju no Kata; professional ability in the areas of technique & instruction; contribution to Judo through teaching, organization or competition
Rokudan — Full professor, extraordinary teaching and leadership skill