The Michigan Daily-Tuesday, December 8, 1981-Page7
Black Belt Test
As students progress in proficiency, they may test to
advancein rank, indicated by the various colored belts
worn with their dogi, or uniform.
Formal black belt tests are held twice a year, at
which time serious students of the art, with years of
training behind them, may test to gain their dan, or
black belt ranking. Tests for advancement in lower
ranks are held more frequently throughout the year.
During the black belt test, the student must execute
complex physical movements requiring intense concen-
tration. Candidates must also answer questions to dem-
onstrate their understanding of the basic principles of
the art. A black belt test culminates with randori, free-
style technique, which exhibits the depth of the stu-
dent's ability. Ultimately, though, the test is one of
personal discipline and self-control, rather than of one's
ability to control others.
The Aikido Yoshinkai Association sponsors
many demonstrations throughout the year. This fall,
Sensei Kushida and several hundred of his students
gave an exhibition of basic, intermediate, and ad-
vanced techniques at the UM Sports Coliseum.
During the course of this demonstration, Kushida
amazed students and audience alike with his ability to
seemingly vanish from the midst of a circle of five at-
tackers. Demonstrating solo kata, alone on the mat,
his graceful, fluid movements were more reminiscent
of a dance than a martial art. Kushida's technique
demonstrated the essence of Aikido-The Way of