Ranking Structure

Ranking exams are given every three months until Shodan (1st degree black belt).

Videos of the katas are available here.

Current Rank Belt Color Practicing Kata
Beginner White Heian shodan
8th kyu White Heian nidan
7th kyu White Heian sandan
6th kyu Green Heian yondan
5th kyu Green Heian godan
4th kyu Green Tekki shodan
3rd kyu* Brown Bassai-dai
2nd kyu Brown Bassai-dai
1st kyu Brown Bassai-dai
Shodan (1st degree) Black Favorite kata
Nidan (2nd degree) Black Favorite (minimum: 2 years Shodan)
Sandan (3rd degree) Black Favorite (minimum: 3 years Nidan)
Yondan (4th degree) Black Favorite (minimum: 5 years Sandan)
Godan + (5th degree +) Black Favorite (by invitation)

* Starting at brown belt and above, the JKA requires an official membership (lower belts can also get one if they’d like). A one year membership card costs $10 and a 5 year membership passport is $30. Cards and passports are valid worldwide and can be stamped to show participation in events such as tournaments.