bjj promotions


Dec 6, 2002
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which belt levels is allowed to give who promotions at different levels?

can blues give blues?
purples give blues?
browns give blues or purples?
purples give purples?
never heard any blue giving out a blue belt.. purples can give out blues as long as it is authorized by a black belt.. I think Aris (a greek guy that used to show up here) he was promoted to a blue by his instructor who was a purple at the time. but everything with the supervising of draculino (the academy's main instructor)..

browns can handle blues as well
AFAIK, it depends on the school. At a local Pedro Sauer affiliate BJJ school, the head instructor - a brown belt - usually hands out stripes to students with a maximum of four/belt. However, they defer all colored belt promotions, and at least one stripe promotion, to be assigned by Pedro Sauer himself. Since he come On the other hand at a local Judo club, low belts are assigned by the group's Black Belt Judoka. All in all, I feel that it is highly subjective and variable.
My instructor is a Purple belt and he will award us with stripes, however his instructor (louis Vintaloro rgda blackbelt) is the only one who awards us with belt advancement.
Black belts are the only ones that are supposed to be allowed to promote people, hence the reason for so many people who arent black belts themselves becoming affiliates with black belt instructors. One is for their own advancement (they're trying to get a black themselves) and another would be for promotional purposes.

A black belt can only award someone else their black belt after he is a 2nd degree, which would mean hes been a black belt for at least 2 years. The catch here though is that in order to get a degree on your black belt, I believe you have to write to the confederation in Brazil for them to approve it (and I've heard it can be quite the pain in the ass sometimes). Because of this, its not uncommon for black belts with years of experience to not have any stripes on their belt.

I believe the whole thing is supposed to be a precautionary measure, for instance to keep you and your buddies from promoting each other the moment someone else gave you a new rank.
Technically you can promote 1 belt level under you. But it is rarely done. There is some pretty strict formality on these kind of promotions.

Let me give you some examples of DO's and DONT's:

DO NOT: Decide that as a purple belt you will just promote some white belts one day. Especially if you are in a large school with brown and black belt instructors. It isn't your place. It is the responsibility of the highest belt, or the head instructor of your school to promote.

DO: Promote some white belts as a purple belt IF the black belt you are under is unable for whatever reason to come to YOUR school and do the promotions. Sometimes these promotions are put off several times and your promotion seminars cancelled. At a certain point the black belt you are under will simply authorize you to promote them in his absense, possible making the note they are provisionary until makes it legitimate, or perhaps not.

But to clear things up: You cannot promote to your belt level. You do not have to be promoted by a black belt. Whenever possible get promoted by a 'known' black belt and avoid the obscure promotions or seminar promotions as you have no solid connection to your black belt instructor.
My instructor has just gone to brown. I am a long way from blue but I'm hoping I get my blue before he gets his black. Even so, I'd gladly except it from him at black, brown & I would of done when he was purple. Not because I'm desperate for a blue belt but because I know the standards of our other blues are awesome.