Aplomb Martial Arts Explains the Purpose of the Belt Ranking System

The concept of martial arts belt ranking has been a great source of interest throughout history and has become a staple in pop culture depictions of martial arts. For many people who are even vaguely aware of martial arts, the belts suggest a special honor and are considered indicative of a martial arts practitioner’s skill.

But what is the true purpose of the martial arts belt, its colors, and why is it so significant?

Historically, the martial arts belt ranking goes as follows:

  • White
  • Yellow
  • Orange
  • Green
  • Blue
  • Purple
  • Brown
  • Red (may be followed by Red/Black)
  • Black

As can be seen from the list, the belts get progressively darker as a student advances through the skill levels in the discipline. Each color signifies a different quality, though the belt progression may vary between martial arts disciplines.

  • White – This color represents a new seed or the beginning of a person’s will.
  • Yellow– Representing sunlight as the seed grows, it symbolizes the beginner’s initial journey.
  • Orange – This belt ranking is for the sun, which strengthens, further nourishing the seed.
  • Green – This symbolizes the plant that the seed is now growing into, flourishing.
  • Blue – A blue sky is what the growing plant reaches for as it continues spreading its leaves.
  • Purple – Symbolizing the dawn, the color is indicative of changing into a new stage of life.
  • Brown – This color is the ripeness of the plant as it becomes more mature.
  • Red – The sun returns at its hottest with this color, and students at this stage are learning more dangerous skills.
  • Black – Beyond the sun’s radiant heat is the solid black darkness, and this belt ranking indicates that the student is now a master of their craft, ready to pass knowledge to others.

Aplomb Martial Arts goes beyond the belt colors and the symbols—the students must show the essential qualities of learning, growing, and transitioning throughout these different stages. This way, they are indeed going on the journey to becoming masters.

Want to know more about skill levels? Head to Aplomb Martial Arts to refer to the experts.