Sports & Recreation

Black Belt Registration

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  • Jan 10th, 2019 1:47 am
[OP]
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Aug 15, 2015
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Markham, ON

Black Belt Registration

I am not part of any Kung Fu, Wushu, boxing, martial arts or karate circles. I understand that anyone with a black belt is equivalent to a weapon.

I don't know where this black belt registry is but I do see many martial art places in my area that promote the learning of martial art for health reasons and to strengthen your body.

I also noticed that people from this forum will ask about where to learn certain types of martial art from time to time.

Today I was on the Canadian Intellectual Property Office website and I conducted searches against registered trademarks to see if any "Dojo"s made registrations. I see a lot of abandoned trademarks or trademarks that were never registered.

For example, in 2004, I obtained a certificate for yellow stripe. I have included a redacted copy of my certificate for reference. The president was of course a black belt but he did not have the funding or students to run a proper dojo. He was GREAT teacher. I lost his contact information as I was just a kid. I believe he rented a gym in the community center every Saturday for a year where me and two handful of students got to learn from him. Unfortunately, I did not continue my studies.

I am sitting here wondering, if you are really someone who has the skills and knowledge to pass on or teach some form of martial arts in Canada, why don't you go ahead and register your trademark on the Canadian intellectual property office so people can find you and get connected to the right people.

If you were as serious as my teacher, your students would have a certificate like mine on file. I don't even know why he was so serious about it at the time but now I sort of get it. Even if he registered now, he can still claim that he has been teaching since 2004. He had students before me.
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7 replies
Deal Expert
Feb 29, 2008
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Montreal
Most schools are under the tutelage of a larger organization like JKA or SKA or whatever, so the right to register a copyright would belong to the parent organization, not the individual.

Furthermore most reputable organizations are non profits so they have very little incentive to protect their trademark.
[OP]
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Aug 15, 2015
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Well I done more research into Martial Arts from simply flipping through an English dictionary from 1987.

Terms I looked up includes: Martial, Martial Art, Kung Fu, Wushu, Karate, Judo, Sumo, Kendo, Wrestle, Wrestling, Far East, China, Chinese, Eastern, Japan, Japanese, Korean, Indochina, Indo-, Adjective, Indochina, Asia, Asian, philosophy, war and soldier. Please note that not all terms listed were defined in the dictionary I looked up but a majority of them were. I am very satisfied with the definitions as provided by my English dictionary and I believe I understood why some terms were not defined.

I have not looked at the cost to maintain a trademark yet but I believe some of the words/terms I looked up are commonly known words/terms to identify a type of martial arts.

A registered trademark I believe is used to help you identify an organization and the goods and services you provide. Just because you provide a service does not necessarily mean you charge a fee.

I was trying to find a Canadian organization that can point me to the correct information about Martial Arts. Hopefully, those organizations consist of Canadians who can actually speak, read and write English and/or French as well as read, interpret and perform the hardest martial arts as documented in paper by people of the past. The benefit of learning the martial art is that you can potentially pick up a third language.

Just an FYI, for those who, like me, are also not in the circles, according to my dictionary, a martial art is one of the philosophies and techniques of self-defense that come from the Far East.

Many people from the Far East has came to Canada, but how many of them has stayed as Canadians and how many of those can pass on the knowledge of Martial Arts properly, accurately and without vice.

The person above only mentioned Karate.

For myself, in my recreational time, I continued my studies with The Royal Conservatory of Music. Today, I was looking at all the materials I used to prepare for my exams, as well as the grade and comments the examiner provided. The examination comprise of the following four components: reading, listening, technical skills and performance. I remember learning the instrument I played, I had to practice daily by myself and receive pointers weekly from my teacher.

I was wondering if there are like standardized reference books for students to look at and recording from the person who received the best score from the previous year. I mean you can even ask student to draw each movement themselves and then at the end of the year give them the book with the school approved copy of what their drawings should look like.

Let say if I was a after school program teaching a form of martial art, I would want a register trademark just so people can see I am a legit organization with a logo designed. Obviously the instructors in my school will have to be accredited by the appropriate black belts authority.

This morning I was searching for an organization that can show me the different martial art school that exist in Canada. I have not checked the yellow pages or yelp yet.

Anyhow, I am sorry I am on a tangent. If the Royal conservatory of martial arts existed, it is important to get the blessing of the Queen because of the word Royal.
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Feb 29, 2008
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All I can tell you that the Japanese martial arts fragmented beyond belief. Every instructor creates a style, he dies, then his senior students argue amongst themselves and each go found their own style.

I would put little stock in any registration or trademark as a certificate of quality.

The onus is on the individual, you, to properly investigate any school to see if it's legit or a McDojo.
Member
Sep 23, 2013
393 posts
194 upvotes
Waterloo, Ontario
I'm been training brazilian jiu-jitsu for the past 9 years and there's a pretty strict promotion system, that being said there's really no registration process with black belts outside of the affiliation. Here's the thing about yellow belts (or blue belts in jiu-jitsu), instructors give a lot or promotions out over the years and most people will quit, there's really no point in tracking who was promoted to what.

The beautiful thing about a martial art is get to spar and test your level, so at the end of the day the rank sometimes doesn't even matter too much. I've trained with white belts who were killers but never took the time to properly go through the proper ranks, they couldn't care less about the colour of their belt. Like Mr_raider mentioned, it's up to the consumer to look out for McDojos; any school you walk into that has no sparring or a cult vibe, run.

Also just to note, being a brown belt in jiu-jitsu and close to a black belt, I wouldn't consider myself the equivalent of a weapon, be careful with any school that talks in this way haha
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Don't buy into the hype of black belts, or any color belt. Plenty of gyms give out belts like candy. People like belts and they like getting them quickly and easily.

I've seen plenty of black belts come into the gym I used to train at and they would get thrown around easily. The gym I trained at didn't believe in belts at all, they believed in training people to become professional fighters, and there were many that came out of that gym (including a couple who beat well known UFC fighters).

Forget about belts. It's all about ability.
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Aug 15, 2018
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Shaner wrote:
Jan 5th, 2019 10:25 pm
Don't buy into the hype of black belts, or any color belt. Plenty of gyms give out belts like candy. People like belts and they like getting them quickly and easily.

I've seen plenty of black belts come into the gym I used to train at and they would get thrown around easily. The gym I trained at didn't believe in belts at all, they believed in training people to become professional fighters, and there were many that came out of that gym (including a couple who beat well known UFC fighters).

Forget about belts. It's all about ability.
Agreed. I'm a Judo black belt and remember going through all belts that potentially exist since age 4. Frankly as a kid, it helps a club retain members (a kid might get bored if he doesn't see a reward of his work in the short/medium term - fair enough).

As an adult, it shouldn't be necessary, as someone should have another motivation to practice. Some clubs give belts otherwise people will just leave.

I lived in Japan for a few years, competed there. They don't have belts other than white and black; because people there don't practice for a belt but to be good at what they do.

Since I arrived in Canada, I was told I have to pay for a kind of "equivalence" to be allowed to be registered as a black belt + the monthly fee will be higher than a white or color belt. Thanks but no thanks. I'm still "allowed" to wear my black belt at the dojo and in competitions but I'd gladly wear a brown one if it allows me not to enter this silly marketing model.

Just my point of view but at the end of the day, it's a business. I don't really care what rank they "give" me as long as I have good and hard trainings and beers after that.
[OP]
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Aug 15, 2015
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Well I guess in both music and martial art is the training of mind, body, discipline and practice.

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