Examination Policy

  1. Only students in good standing (fees paid, regular attendance, and recommended by their senior/instructor) are allowed to test.
  2. Testing will be conducted on the last Saturday of the month.
  3. Only the persons testing, assistant instructors and instructor are allowed in the room during the examination.
  4. Examination fees are as follows:
    All kyu ranks(brown belt and below) $30.00
    Shodan - Nidan - Sandan $80.00
    Yondan - Godan - up $135.00
  5. Black Belt Registration Fees:
    A student who earns a black belt rank may choose to register their rank with the SKIF-USA. The registration fees are as follows:
    Rank Registration Fee Processing Fee Total
    Shodan $160.00 $20.00 $180.00
    Nidan $200.00 $20.00 $220.00
    Sandan $265.00 $20.00 $285.00
    Yondan $335.00 $20.00 $355.00
    Godan $465.00 $20.00 $485.00
  6. Clean uniforms must be worn during testing.
  7. Examination will consist of 2 parts:
    1. Written examination (applicable only to 13 years and up) of basic terminology, history and techniques appropriate for each rank. Passing grade is 90%.
    2. Test of basic skill requirements for that rank divided between kihon, kata and kumite appropriate for each rank. A required score of 3 points in each category (kihon, kata and kumite) is necessary in order to pass.
  8. During testing all students are required to display proper dojo etiquette and should be familiar with examination policy and procedures.
  9. Where retesting is necessary, it will be rescheduled for testing at the next rank examination. No additional fees are charged.
  10. Promotions will be announced and given out during the next scheduled class. You are invited to bring parents, family, spouses and friends to the promotion ceremony. Don't forget that camera.

Examination Goals

 Training in karate is like a staircase that has no end. Every step brings one closer to the goal, but the ultimate goal is always a little higher. The true student of karate counts each step as a substantive measure of their progress.

These steps or measures are referred to as ranking levels. Each individual will find themselves at a particular level according to the training achievements they are able to master. The goal is to progress, advance and achieve through continual training.

Karate ranking is a mirror which correctly reflects the individual's past and present level of accomplishment. It is a step taken on the way toward refinement and more complete development of karate abilities.

Advancement in rank is determined by several factors comprised of but not limited to: regular class attendance, attitude, knowledge of techniques, understanding of basic terminology and knowledge of karate history.

Rank Divisions

Rank Belt Color
1st Dan Black
1st Kyu Brown
2nd Kyu Brown
3rd Kyu Brown
4th Kyu Purple
5th Kyu Purple
6th Kyu Green
7th Kyu Blue
8th Kyu Orange
9th Kyu Yellow
10th Kyu White

Rank Standards

 Hachi (8th) kyu - this is the ability level where in the individual is able to perform and apply the most simple external actions and techniques.

Shichi (7th), Ro (6th), Go (5th) and Yon (4th) kyu - Each of these levels requires an increased stage of development of both technical and mental skills.

San (3rd) and Ni (2nd) kyu - Must have the general ability to compete in competition with controlled, simple and effective techniques.

Ik (1st) kyu - At this point, the individual must be capable of executing all fundamental body movements and techniques with proper application. This includes all hand and leg techniques.

Significant Points: Kata

 A kata is a series of moves arranged in a sequence. This sequence, or pattern, has a predetermined number of steps and moves. Beginning kata utilize the basic stances, blocks, and hand techniques. The more advanced kata utilize more complex movements, applications of power and control for speed.


  1. The application of strength at the correct time
  2. The control of speed in and between techniques
  3. A smooth transition of the body from one technique to the next

Significant Points: Kihon

Basic techniques (kihon) are the punches, strikes, blocks and kicks that are essential to forming a strong defense against an attack. In karate there is a saying, 'ikken hissatsu' ('to kill with one blow'). To perform 'ikken hissatsu' one can not jump, spin and slash; rather one is taught to bend their legs, grip the floor with their toes and snap their hips forcefully. Kihon should always be practiced with zeal.


  1. Stances (Dachi):
    1. Weight distribution
    2. Distance between feet
    3. Position of back and hips
    4. Direction of feet
  2. Punching (Tuski):
    1. Forming of the fist
    2. Route of punch (Accurate to target)
    3. Concentration of power
    4. Rotation of the torso
  3. Blocking (Uke):
    1. Degree (angle) of blocking arm
    2. Distance between blocking arm and body
    3. Position of the fist
    4. Posture
    5. Elbow stays inside body line
    6. Rotation of torso with blocking action
  4. Kicking (Geri):
    1. Position of the knee
    2. Position of the foot
      1. Kicking foot
      2. Supporting leg
    3. Position of the body
    4. Angle of travel

Significant Points: Kumite

There are several forms of sparring in karate, but the most basic is 'gohon kumite' (five-step sparring). It incorporates only hand techniques; specifically, two punches - lunge and reverse punch and two blocks - raising block and outside forearm block. The practice was devised to develop strong blocks and punches, and fast forward and backward changes of stance.

Another form of sparring is 'kihon ippon kumite' (basic one-step sparring). Here partners stand facing each other and take turns in attacking and defending with predetermined attacks and defenses against agreed targets.

Depending on your level, you will be required to do one type for test purposes.


  1. Offense:
    1. Fast spirited attack
    2. Focus of attack
  2. Defense:
    1. Effective block
    2. Accurate counter-attack
    3. Smooth transition form block to counter-attack

Level of Efficiency

 Beginners (7th kyu and below), spirit and projection may be counted double. Intermediate/Advance (6th kyu and above) poor spirit may be doubly deducted.

For 3rd kyu and above, the major factors are smoothness, balance, agility, coordination, focus, stamina and body control in combination techniques.

There is no requirement that says you have to test for rank. If you do test you should be at the height of proficiency and not just testing because you feel you deserve it.