Tai Shin Doh and Junior Black Belts


JUNIOR BLACK BELT is an innovative and exciting new program concept.

JUNIOR BLACK BELT is a specialized program in Martial Arts for ages 8 to 15.
          The program curriculum includes TaishinJitsu (Self Defense), Kumite (Sparing), Kata (Forms), Weapons (ancient traditional forms with sword, staff, nunchaku, etc), Musical and Creative Forms as well as Synchronized Forms and Tournament competition.

JUNIOR BLACK BELT is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Martial Art of Internationally acclaimed
TAISHINDOH and through this training concept is a means for youth to realistically enter the World of Martial Arts.




Dear Parent and prospective student.

The following  narrative about our Youth Karate program  will add a NEW and exciting dimension  which has been several years in re-development, and will start in the Winter 2006 Session.  This new and exciting activity is our Junior Black Belt Program which we believe will be an exciting, innovative and creative leisure-time sport activity for the Young Student. 

Our Junior Black Belt Program has the sanction and approval of World Class Martial Arts Black Belt Organizations which are listed on our Web site www.taishindohUSA.com   As a Martial Arts Teacher of more than forty years and having reached the highest levels of World Class Martial Arts myself, I am extremely excited and proud to offer this program again after more than a quarter of a Century!

Our Junior Black Belt Program is not a “try it and if I like it” type of program, rather, that has already been established by your child being in our regular classes and having been in of one of our regular scheduled Tournaments and has been promoted to at least Yellow Belt.  The Junior Black Belt Program starts with a step above!   It is a regular scheduled sport and athletic program sponsored by the Recreation Department that is like no other!   While youth try other sport programs to get the “best fit” so to speak, none has the awesome prestige, admiration and mystique from youth, as the title of Black Belt!

Our Junior Black Belt Program could be  for everyone!  Junior Black Belt is a commitment to excellence!  Junior Black Belt is a commitment to learning to set goals, learning to plan and work the plan, and to carry out the plan to its goal which is Junior Black Belt!  This is NOT just another  leisure-time “try it” activity for something kids can do in an hour or so, rather the Junior Black Belt Program is a integral component of the World Class Taishindoh and Kids Karate World programs.  (www.kidskarateworld.com)

More often, parents  seem to choose a multiple series of recreational and leisure time activities during the week  for their children with a rationale that a child should be exposed to as many different free time activities in order to provide for a more well rounded experience, and that eventually, the child will choose the one he or she likes best.   My experience of more than forty years of teaching a unique type of sports and athletics is that too many activities can be counter productive!

With all of the added educational responsibilities and academic challenges required of children today, that after “home work” and “Faith Instruction,”  I believe that “free time” should be used judiciously, and that recreational and sport and athletic activity should be chosen wisely in order to create a more proper balance in growth and development.  In Junior Black Belt,  I believe that it is better for Children to learn to enjoy and thrive in one or two “Free Time” activities, than it is to be exposed to many, and not do well in any!   

In Junior Black Belt, students begin to learn at an early age to set goals for themselves, and after having made a commitment to achieve a stated goal, to learn to see it through!    Students in our Junior Black Belt program learn to prioritize their time, as they have determined that this is a major aspect of setting and achieving goals for themselves!
Junior Black Belt is NOT a VANITY program!  We do not have a child’s Black Belt in our program!  Junior Black Belt training deals with operative words called “TRAINING and EARNED!”   Junior Black Belt training involves learning to focus on task; developing coordination, hand/eye abilities, dealing with frustration, dealing with the “I can’t or I’m bored or tired” attitudes.  Junior Black Belt trains youth to THINK, to Learn how to Learn and to Learn when they are Learning and to learn to enjoy and savor the moment as a REWARD!  Junior Black Belt teaches youth that there are REWARDS in helping others, and improving  upon themselves oftentimes without expecting material rewards is a reward in itself, it is called development of character!
“No Ice Cream, Cookies and Milk, Happy Meals, or Game Boy’s, to occupy a Child’s time.
No superficial rewards for being quiet or behaving!   Rewards in Junior Black come through personal accomplishment brought about by training, desire and effort!”

No Balloons, nor “cutesy” and fancy head bands.  No camouflaged belts, and No “jumping through hoops” to impress Parents!   Junior Black Belt is a World Class Martial Arts discipline and training regimen!  The Adult Junior Black Belt instructors and volunteer instructors have nearly 200 (collective) Years experience! We again invite parents to view our Web sites, www.taishindohUSA.com and www.kidskarateworld.com to review the qualifications of the Director and support Black Belt personnel and philosophy of teaching youth, and as one recent TV. automobile commercial states, “if you can find a better deal, buy it!”

The Junior Black Belt through Taishindoh International and Kids Karate World is an EARNED Black Belt awarded after long and dedicated training which includes learning to research Martial Arts History and writing a report on selected topics. 

The average young person in our community is usually involved in a seasonal type of scheduled sport through school, ie: Baseball, Basketball, Swimming, etc. Some young people become active in two seasonal recreational activities and then take time off!  The “downside” of these activities are they are Seasonal and the number of players are limited, only so many can play!  Not so in Karate!  Not so in our Junior Black Belt Program!  Junior Black Belt training is only limited by the students desire to achieve excellence, and to learn that Karate training is not instant gratification, rather training is “Learning to Learn” and enjoying the knowledge that one has achieved a milestone through personal effort!   

An “up-side” of Junior Black Belt is that the Student learns to Train and Work in the program while having fun, NOT PLAY!  Playing can come at another time, in another activity!  In Junior Black Belt, students choose this sport and athletic activity as their GOAL because they have determined that Karate has more of a personal challenge! The student has determined that by achieving the stated goal, that he or she has earned the coveted Junior Black  Black  Belt and has accomplished a very unique milestone that few other youth can or will, and will carry the lessons learned throughout their lifetime!  

As I have stated, Junior Black Belt is for everyone!  We encourage Parents to be involved with the student in this program!  This is not a typical Recreational type of activity! There are lessons to be learned and parents can help their children by attendance, encouragement and support!  Junior Black Belt is a major Martial Arts program as well as major sport and athletic undertaking.

Junior Black Belt is a program for the student who has the potential to achieve for him or herself, and desires to rise to a higher aspiration.    Black Belt is a major accomplishment at any age, but for the young student, the accomplishment and lessons learned in Junior Black Belt, are something that youth will carry through a life-time, and lesson’s learned and friendships gained, will be cherished for years to come. 

The Junior Black Belt Program is not to be confused with Adult level training!   There is an infinite amount more training and skill level development involved.  The Adult level can usually be achieved by age 16, (but not guaranteed) and is normally two to three years of additional training and competition beyond Junior Black Belt to achieve and earn the coveted Shodan (Adult 1st Degree).

Students involved in the Junior Black program can continue with training through their school years and have every opportunity to graduate from High School with more than an “Athletic or Varsity Letter, as they will have earned a minimum of an Adult Second Degree Black Belt in Taishindoh Karate which is recognized not only as a World Class Martial Art, and recognized as a major training program in Self Defense by World Class Law Enforcement Training programs, but may have qualified for the  Basic Teaching Certificate from Taishindoh International which can be of more value in future  endeavors than participation in normal secondary level sports programs. 


                                                                             Time Table for Training toward Junior Black Belt!

We encourage Parents to think about this program narrative explaining Junior Black Belt, and seriously consider if the demands and requirements for the Junior Black Belt Program is a sport and athletic activity, is a commitment which is right for your child and your support.
Junior Black Belt is usually a Three Year program!   Please be advised that the Three Year program is not necessarily Three Callander Years, but is mainly determined by the actual time in hours per week, month, quarter, year, etc a student presents him or herself for training.  Taking time off at any time during a given year, is taking time off from training!  Junior Black Belt is a year around program, it is not seasonal dependant!  

Junior Black Belt training can start at any new Recreation Department Session, ie:, Winter-Spring, Summer, and Fall.   Training in Junior Black Belt leaves a lot of time for other individual and family activities, and we encourage that.   The Junior Black Belt training program requires that youth train at least twice per week, and approximately every third Thursday evening for Demonstration Team practice and training!


                                                                                         COMPETITION!    TOURNAMENTS!
                                                                                                        International Event

Our program sponsors two competitive events per year (Spring and Fall) and are held at Orange High School, and are mandatory as part of training .  Our Tournament is an Invitational Tournament meaning that we only invite other Karate Schools that we believe hold to the highest standards of Traditional Martial Arts. International Teams from Canada and England continue to be part of our program, as well as US teams from Pennsylvania, New York, West Virginia, and Kentucky. 

Competition is a major component in Junior Black Belt training, as the student has the opportunity to have his or her skills evaluated by impartial adult Black Belt Judges from other Martial Art disciplines, and besides, what would Black Belt be without demonstrating the “Learned Skills?”

Students and parents must understand the importance of training.  There is no substitute for training!  Junior Black Belt cannot be accomplished by attending a one hour program once per week!  Think about that!  Our Junior Black Belt program stands above all others, and the reason is TRAINING and COMMITMENT

PARENTS are a major reason why youth in the Junior Black Belt program will succeed!  Parents are the folks who help encourage, support and provide the car pools to bring students to class!  Parents are to be commended and honored for their major contribution to the Junior Black Belt program.

                                                                                                       DEMONSTRATION TEAM!

Fun!  Fun! Fun!  The Demonstration Team is made up of the Students in the Junior Black Belt Program. The very special skills of creative and Traditional Forms (Kata) as well as Self Defense techniques and many other specialized forms are demonstrated by the Students at various Public Showings.  This is one of several venues where Students “get to strut their stuff!”  Several years ago, our Demonstration Team was featured twice on National TV (ESPN) at local Professional Sporting events.  Starting in 2006, the Demo Team will be featured at Public locations such as “Beachwood Mall during Holiday Seasons and Orange Jubilee in May, as well as other local Community Events throughout the Year.

The Demonstration Team practices on the average of every third Thursday (time to be announced), or as needed depending on the difficulty of the program  for Public Showing.  We are indeed proud of our Demo Team who are the Students involved in the Junior Black Belt Program as they have found the time and have the desire to aspire to a higher potential.  However, all of this could not happen without the full support and cooperation of Parents who also have committed themselves to become part of the “Transportation Team” among other duties.  After all, what good is the finest skill development program, if you can’t get to it?   Parents are a major part of the working relationship with Teachers toward the single purpose of encouraging and helping the Student to stay on course.

Please be advised that Demo Team does not only feature singe events, but is a highly skilled TEAM effort!  Each member is part of a huge “stage Play” so to speak and each person has a part to play and arriving to practice ON TIME is essential to make the program complete.  Therefor, one can see the importance of practice and attendance.  Demo Team is a commitment, and must be supported by Parents in order for a child to achieve success.

                                                                                             TRAINING UNITS and CURRICULUM

There will be a special and Unique Gi (Uniform) to identify the Junior Black Belt program.

Certain other traditional equipment is required, ie. Staff, nunchaku, as well as specialized clothing for special events, Ninja, Lion Dance, Hakima

First Year:
First Year, Competition White Gi

Ukemi   (Falling and Rolling technique)
Kata ( 3Forms)
Self Defense (JuJitsu)
Synchronized Forms (two or more performers)
Traditional Forms (Nunchaku, Bo, staff,  kama, etc)
Kumite (Sparing)
Training for Junior Ninja Team
Training for “Lion Dance” Team
Tournament Competition (Min: 2 @ Year)
Demonstration Team Practice, approximately every third week or as needed for Public Demonstration
Testing for Rank (color belt)
Demonstration Team Patch (if earned to be worn on Gi)
Black Belt Club Patch (for Gi)

Second Year:
Competition Gi w/Taishindoh logo
T-shirt w/ Taishindoh Black Belt and “Character and Honor”   “Aspire to a higher potential”

Ukemi    (Falling and Rolling)
Kata (3 Forms) to Blue Belt = 5 Heians + BSD
Self Defense (Jujitsu)
Synchronized Forms
Traditional Forms (Nunchaku, Bo, Staff, Kama, etc)
Kumite (Sparing single and multiple attacks)
Training for Junior Ninja Team
Training for “Lion Dance”
Tournament Competition (Min: 2 @ Year)
Demonstration Team Practice
Developing Creative Personal Kata (Form)
Begin to think about research and writing report for Third Year.
Pre-test for Brown or Red Belt #1
Test for Junior Brown Belt # 1 (Brown with Black Stripe)

Third Year:
Competition Gi W/Taishindoh logo   T-Shirt with Logos.

Ukemi     (Falling and Rolling)     
Various Waza JuJitsu Kata (4Forms) NSD, BO, etc, Creative, Synchronized
Tournament Competition (Min: 2 @ Year)
Competition Team
Performing Creative Kata
Performing Bo, Nunchaku, etc
Performing all Kata
Submit Research paper
Performing Junior Ninja Team
Performing “Lion Dance”
(24  Month, average)
Pre-test for Junior Black Belt #1
Final Test for Junior Black Belt # 1(Black with Brown Stripe)
(30th Month, average)
Pre-Test Junior Black  Black Belt #2
(36th Month, average)
Final Test Junior Black Belt #2
T-Shirt “I survived the Taishindoh Black Belt Test (year) “Champions for Life”
Presentation Certificate of Rank

Nomination to weekend extravaganza in Pittsburgh, Pa.  International Hall of Fame and Awards Banquet.   Suggested attendance to this outstanding event is encouraged.

The progression of skill level attainment in Junior Black belt is as follows.   

Yellow, Green, Blue, Purple, Brown, Brown/Purple, Brown/Black, Junior Black level 1, Junior Black Belt level2.

The listed requirements for promotion to Junior Black Belt are minimum requirements, and from time to time during Training, we may elect to add an extra feature of training to the program which is designed to enhance and develop additional skills.

For further information, call Ron Balas @ 216 691 9391
                                                               Fax: 216 382 5523

                                              E.mail: ronbalas@sbcglobal.net
                                              E.mail: soke@taishindohUSA.com 

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