Sierra Aikido's tests are scheduled individually whenever a student is
ready. We hold the exams during a class hour so that as many other students
as possible can observe the test, learn from it, and support the person testing.
The exam is a culmination of concentrated training and preparation, and gives
the student personal recognition from all of the instructors, senpai
( senior students ) and fellow dojo members.
It usually takes about one year of steady training to advance a rank.
First Exam provides a solid foundation for
future training and testing. There is no
competition in Aikido. Students test only after they have made significant
progress compared to their last test and can do a really good exam according
to their ages and levels.
Sierra Aikido does not use a "bell curve" to rank students. We strive to
make every student test well, even if it takes longer to prepare. Each belt
represents a significant
value in the eyes of the entire group. We believe anyone who is motivated
can learn high quality Aikido with consistent support from the dojo.