Taboo Topic: You Feel Neglected When It Comes To Belt Promotions

BJJ belt standards

Many people say belts do not matter.

That’s fair.

To many who have been around a long time they may not.

To some they do which is why they celebrate their promotion so emotionally on social media and in the class. Rank symbolizes time and effort. It has meaning behind it. It should be celebrated IMO, especially if you work hard.

Heck, at I Love BJJ if you read the inbox over the past ten years the most common gripes were about their school issues (generally professor/student) or a handling of their promotion or lack thereof and their feelings of neglect.

Of course some of these people are just merely whining and have no legitimate gripe. They wanted to vent. That’s cool. It happens.

Some just want to feel valued. Maybe a promotion makes them feel this way in some cases if they have been skipped over. Generally they haven’t if the professor is a good professor he has his reasons.

One person said they were training for a number of years and were still a white belt but came to class often and made effort. He said he felt his professor didn’t care about him.

His schools promotion process was not very uniform. He was an older guy in BJJ (50s) who actually has a slight disability. He felt slighted being stuck as a white belt and I had to give him an answer. I think I said for him to communicate with his professor about the issue. And then he wrote back to the effect the professor was rude or arrogant about communicating. Then I said “perhaps change schools” and then he said where he lived “there were no other school options in the area.”

Does he sound like a bad guy? A whiner?

I think he’s okay. He seemed pretty humble just distraught because he really enjoys Jiu Jitsu. He has a family and hopes to earn a black belt one day.

I never met him in person but I felt sorta bad.

Back on topic…

Some schools are very uniform and they have time measures or number of class criteria with testing and stuff like this. Maybe how they do in competition or in sparring.

While others are more discretionary. The discretion may not have a systematic or measurable method to it which is why some people may feel slighted.

What do you think about people who have an issue with a belt promotion? Are they whiners? Or do any of them have a legit gripe? What about competitors and recreational, should there be separate criteria?

READ: Time criteria before competing

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