Anyone can wear a black belt and call themselves one, however what does it actually mean to be a black belt?
Being a black belt is not about the colour tied around your waist, it is about you as a person, your inner core. Black belts should be the energy of the association, always there to help their instructor and always supportive of everything their Instructor does. They should be the nucleus of the group and the ones who try and promote the club, be the energy and encourage the lower grades to follow suit. For it is only working together as a whole that real progress can be made.
Black belts should be supportive, helpful, caring, passionate about their martial art, and put others before themselves. None of the above characteristics are physical but emotional and being a black belt is about fusing the two together to strive and be the best possible person you can be. Your martial art should be one of the number one priorities in your life and no longer just a hobby. It should be your passion.
If you are wearing a black belt around your waist, read the above again and then ask yourself the question: “Am I a true black belt?” If you don’t support, if you don’t listen to your instructor, if you don’t give back and help others, if you don’t set a good example for others to follow, then the answer is NO and you have to change. For a Chung DO Kwan black belt has to be all of these things and more. Being a true black belt is about stepping up and taking responsibility and representing your instructor and club.