Within the martial arts, the value of rank is related to:
- The organization that awarded the rank.
- The instructor who awarded the rank.
- The requirements required to earn the rank.
- The skills and character of the person possessing the rank.
- Between individual martial artists, rank is important. When you meet pseudo-martial artists, the first thing they will tell you is their rank and then they will tell you all they have done. Rank is important to true martial artists, but when they meet, they are not as concerned with rank as they are with:
- Your style
- How long you have studied it
- Who your instructor is
- What you can do now
- What you know
Some schools and organizations have written requirements for rank that are strictly enforced, but for the most part, rank requirements, and whether they have been fulfilled, is a subjective decision make by the instructor. Thus, the skill level, attitude, effort, and conduct required for a rank do not have precise definitions and guidelines. Judgments made by an instructor reflect his or her age, experience, and what he or she is trying to accomplish within the school and the martial art.