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Senior Black Belt Test Essay by James Kennedy

Since I’ve gotten my black belt I’ve learned that I still have to learn, not even just the katas and techniques. I can learn to teach lower belts more. I can learn new sparing strategies/techniques, and of course I need to remember all of my old curriculum, my nine katas, forty techniques, and all my kicks and punches. I need to remember the attacks of all the techniques, and how to do them and all the small moves in them.

I’ve learned that I need to be more responsible. The young kids and lower belts look up to the black belts, and if I’m goofing off or being lazy, they will think it’s ok to do that too. I remember when I was a lower belt I thought it would be really fun to be a black belt. I always watched the higher belts do their katas and thought “I want to do those katas.”

I’ve learned that it is fun to be a black belt. My favorite part of it is helping clean up, or helping to teach a lower belt a kata or technique. I also like the smaller classes like red belt class and black belt class more than the bigger ones. I like to use my weapons, and, now that I’ve had them for a while, I can do some cool tricks. I like to spare the younger kids and help them with their moves.

I’ve learned that I have learned a lot. When you are a white belt, you don’t need to learn much to get your next belt, just three simple techniques, and one short kata. But as you move up the belts, you need to learn longer katas, more complicated techniques, and of course stay sharp on the old belt curriculum. And by the time you reach black belt, you need to learn more katas, and eleven techniques.

I’ve learned that it’s hard to get a black belt. To get a black belt, you need to go to many, many, many classes, and put in a lot of time. You need to make sure you don’t goof off in class or be lazy just because it’s only practice. You also need to make sure you’re doing well in school, or your teacher won’t recommend you get a new belt. The first time you get a new belt, it doesn’t take very long, but it takes longer and longer every belt. But that’s good, since every belt the curriculum gets harder, which gives you more time to work on it and drill old katas.

I hope more kids can become black belts. As long as you keep going and don’t quit, you will become good enough to earn a black belt. Being a black belt is fun, and I think helping the younger belts or cleaning up is my favorite part of being a black belt. I’ve made it to a black belt, but I know I still need to keep working, and I need to work hard, or else the smaller belts will think they don’t have to work hard.