Promotion Requirements

For All Ranks

Falling methods

Understanding of the history of judo

Meaning of Seiryoku Zenyo & Jita Kyoei

Active competitor for those under 30

Knowledge of the rules of judo

Regular class attendance

Proper time in grade (TIG)

Promotion points as indicated

Membership in the USJA

Rokyu, Yellow Belt, 6th class - 3 months TIG with 6 points

O-goshi

O-soto-gari

Koshi-guruma

Seoi-nage

Kesa-gatame (+escapes)

Hadaka-jime (over 13)

Gokyu, Orange Belt, 5th Class - 5 months TIG with 9 points

All previous requirements

Uki-goshi

O-uchi-gari

Kouchi-gari

Tai-otoshi

Tani-otoshi

Kami-shiho-gatame (+escapes)

Yoko-shiho-gatame (+escapes)

Nami-juji-jime (over 13)

Yonkyu, Green Belt, 4th Cass - 6 months TIG with 12 points

All previous requirements

Sasae-tsurikomi-ashi

Deashi-barai

Tsurikomi-goshi

Kosoto-gari

Harai-goshi

Morote-gari

Kuzure-kesa-gatame (+escapes)

Okuri-eri-jime (over 13)  

Sankyu, Brown Belt, 3rd Class - 8 months TIG with 16 points

(Blue Belt, for Juniors - no armlocks)

All previous requirements

Hiza-guruma

Uchimata

Tomoe-nage

Ashi-guruma

Soto-makikomi

O-soto-otoshi

Kosoto-gake

O-soto-gaeshi

Kata-gatame (+escapes)

Kuzure-yoko-shiho-gatame (+escapes)

Gyaku-juji-jime

Ude-Garami

Juji-gatame  

Nikyu, Brown Belt, 2nd Class - 10 months TIG with 20 points

(Purple Belt, for Juniors - no armlocks) 

All previous requirements

Kata-guruma

Tsuri-goshi

O-guruma

O-soto-guruma

Hane-goshi

Sukui-nage

Okuri-ashi-barai

Yoko-otoshi

Sumi-gaeshi

Utsuri-goshi

Tate-shiho-gatame (+escapes)

Sankaku-gatame (+escapes)

Sankaku-jime

Kata-juji-jime

Waki-gatame

Ude-Gatame

Ikkyu, Brown Belt, 1st Class - 11 months TIG with 23 points

All previous requirements

Harai-tsurikomi-ashi

O-soto-makikomi

Uki-otoshi

Ura-nage

Hikikomi-gaeshi

Sode Tsurikomi-goshi

Uchimata-sukashi

Ushiro-goshi

Kibisu-gaeshi

Tsubame-gaeshi

Harai-makikomi

Uchi-makikomi

Yama-arashi

Kuzure-kami-shiho-gatame (+escapes)

Kataha-jime

Ryote-jime

Hara-gatame

Ashi-gatame

Shodan, Black Belt, 1st Degree - 1 year TIG with 30 points

All previous requirements plus a background check

Yoko-wakare

Yoko-guruma

Sumi-otoshi

Yoko-gake

O-uchi-gaeshi

Kouchi-gaeshi

Hane-makikomi

Uki-waza

Nage-no-kata

Nidan, Black Belt, 2nd Degree - 3 years TIG with 65 points

All previous requirements

Daki-age

Kani-basami

Kawazu-gake

Kuchiki-taoshi

Harai-goshi-gaeshi

Hane-goshi-gaeshi

Uchimata-makikomi

Havarelli

Obi-otoshi

Katame-no-kata

Sandan, Black Belt, 3rd Degree - 4 years TIG with 130 points

All previous requirements

Teaching, coaching, and refereeing ability

Yodan, Black Belt or Red & Black Belt, 4th Degree - 5 years TIG with 210 points

All previous requirements

Goshin-jutsu-kata or Kime-no-kata

Advanced teaching, coaching, and refereeing ability

USJA Promotion Board approval

Godan, Black Belt or Red & Black Belt, 5th Degree - 7 years TIG with 300 points

All previous requirements

Additional kata of choice

Recognized as regional leader

Rokudan, Black Belt or Red & White Belt, 6th Degree - 8 years TIG with 410 points

Shichidan, Black Belt or Red & White Belt, 7th Degree - 9 years TIG with 550 points

Hachidan, Black Belt or Red & White Belt, 8th Degree - 11 years TIG with 700 points

All previous requirements

Recognized as a national leader

USJA Board of Directors Approval

Kudan, Black Belt or Red Belt, 9th Degree - TIG Determined by Board

Judan, Black Belt or Red Belt, 10th Degree - TIG Determined by Board

All previous requirements

Recognized as an international leader

Further Information

The CAJA Belt Test offers online interactive practice tests

The USJA National Promotion System has links to all required forms

The Judo Information Site has more perspectives on promotions

You can also read Sensei Gary's Thoughts on Black Belts

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