Testing and Promotion

The Promotion Process

You will demonstrate your progress by focusing your training on a set of arts and principles that challenge your level of personal development, improve your technical skills, and deepen your understanding of yourself and your practice. The examination process is an opportunity for you to demonstrate your growth and level of training to the dojo community. Instructors keep a watchful eye on your practice, training, and development. You will only be asked to test when they feel you are ready to demonstrate at the next level successfully.


If you have not been asked to participate in an upcoming examination and you are interested in demonstrating your growth, please speak with your instructor.

Participation in the examination process

In order to participate in the examination process you will:

  • Keep track of your class attendance by marking your attendance sheet
  • Speak clearly and directly to your Sensei about the examination and your desire to participate
  • Sign up for your examination one month prior to the announced date
  • Have a partner (uke) who has agreed to practice with you and be part of your examination. Your uke should be either your rank or one rank above or below your current rank. Both you and your uke should know the names of techniques and attacks listed in the criteria for your examination and for one level above.
  • Train hard for your examination
  • Be familiar with the opening and closing bowing formalities of an examination
  • Be ready to enjoy letting your true self shine through during your examination!

During the examination:

Kokyu Dosa
Kokyu Dosa
  • You will perform with confidence and fill the dojo with your Ki.
  • You will be asked to demonstrate your development and understanding of technique appropriate to your level
  • You will demonstrate concentration, awareness, and Ki Ai; speed is not your priority – harmony, and continuity of movement is important
  • Your technique should be performed continuously both left and right until there is a signal from Sensei
  • You will be expected to know and respond to the Japanese terms of techniques

Included in the criteria for each grade are examples of Aiki Taiso (Hitori waza or exercises for Aikido arts), and Kumi waza (techniques). Part or all of these areas may or may not be a part of your examination; be prepared to perform to the best of your ability.

Download the examination criteria