I wish to learn a martial art. Can you explain the differences?
Today we have so many different disciplines, styles, systems of martial art to choose from, it can be confusing. While it may be an over simplification, it is easier to understand if we group the different martial arts into just three categories: grappling, boxing and weapons. The grappling styles predominantly give way to an opponent’s force and include Jujutsu, Judo, Aikido, and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. The boxing styles predominantly meet the opponent’s force with force and include Karate and Tae Kwon Do. The weapon styles practise with various weapons and include: Kendo and Iaido. Many schools will cross over to include some aspects from other groups e.g. jujutsu (jujitsu) will include striking and may also include weapon practice.
How long should it take to get a black belt?
This will vary between disciplines and with the number of training hours you can devote each week. It is not unrealistic that it could take around 5 years or longer. We recommend that you speak with the teacher (Sensei) about this. Ask if the school has a structured training guide or curriculum that sets down what is required to progress through each of the levels towards attaining a black belt.
How do I check a teacher’s credentials?
It is best to ask the sensei to produce evidence of grade in what they are teaching. You may wish to do some personal research to be sure that any qualification you attain is recognised beyond the school that issued it. All well-credentialed instructors should possess a certificate of rank from a Member School of the AJF, an NCAS accreditation level, and if working with children an authorisation card to do so.
Is a black belt the ultimate goal?
Although receiving a black belt is a very high achievement, there are still many ranks above black belt which are commonly called “Dan” or “Degree” with black belt being 1st Dan or 1st step.
Are martial arts really an art or are they a science?
Properly taught and practiced they are both art and science, although this will rely much on the knowledge and skill of the teacher. With the education programs available to teachers of martial arts there are many opportunities for a better understanding of the sciences that underpin the techniques. The most appropriate program for this is the National Coaching Accreditation Scheme (NCAS), recognised by Australian and state/territory governments, this is a program of the Australian Sports Commission and administered by the Australian Jujitsu Federation for those martial arts disciplines covered by the Federation.
Is it true that martial arts can really become a way of life?
When you consider that you could start training in the martial arts at a young age and still be involved in retirement then the answer is probably a definite yes. When properly taught by an accredited coach, martial arts teachings include discipline and a philosophy, which is an ideal guide for a healthy mind and lifestyle.
Is there Government recognition in Australia for martial arts?
The Australian Government through the Australian Sports Commission (ASC) provides recognition in Australia for around seventy National Sporting Organisations (NSOs). This includes the Australian Jujitsu Federation, which is recognised by the ASC to provide for: Aikido, Aiki Jujitsu, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Hapkido, Jujutsu and Kenpo Jujitsu, and Jujitsu.
What does it mean that a martial arts teacher is accredited?
If the teacher claims accreditation under the National Coaching Accreditation Scheme (NCAS) or the National Officiating Accreditation Scheme (NOAS) then they have accredited under either the coaching or officiating education program conducted by a National Sporting Organisation (NSO) approved by the Australian Sports Commission and recognised by the Australian and state/territory governments. For more information on accreditation look under the Accreditation tab.
How do I check if an instructor is accredited?
The instructor will have an accreditation ID card issued by the National Sporting Organisation recognised by the Australian Government through the Australian Sports Commission (ASC) for that specific martial art. If that martial art is Aikido, Aiki Jujitsu, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Hapkido, Jujitsu, Jujutsu, or Kenpo Jujitsu … then a complete list of accredited instructors is available on this website together with a sample of the accreditation ID card … look under the Accreditation tab for all ‘accredited coaches’.
Is NCAS accreditation transferable to another martial art, or another school of the same martial art?
No. The concept of accreditation is that it is specific to the martial art in which the candidate is qualified. That is, the teacher is accredited to coach or teach that specific martial art discipline within the school in which they qualified.
Are all black belt teachers qualified?
There are no universal criteria by which black belt ranks are awarded. Like any formal qualification, black belt ranks, dans or degrees should be certified by an organisation that has a recognised national or international status to award such qualification. As a minimum, the issuing authority should be a member of a recognised national or international authority.
To attain the qualification, the candidate should have trained and studied within the style and system of the awarding body, which in turn should have monitored and assessed the performance of the candidate.
Is it correct that some overseas organisations will award grading certification by post?
Sadly, yes. They usually require you to pay a fee and sign-up as a member, then send a resume and photo, plus other certificates. Pay another fee, and they issue a grade certificate. All this might take place over the internet, without the issuing organisation ever seeing the person perform.
Be very cautious of any organisation that operates in that manner. With technology today it is not difficult to produce a certificate that can look very authentic.
You may wish to read the page ‘Beware Martial Arts Misrepresentation’ under the Member tab
Can an individual person be a member of the Australian Jujitsu Federation?
There are membership options however the AJF is a federation of member organisations providing for jujitsu and related martial arts including Aikido, Aiki Jujitsu, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Hapkido, Jujutsu and Kenpo Jujitsu. These organisations are referred to as member and associate member schools with each having their own structure and teaching their own system within their martial art discipline.
For details on each school go to the tab ‘Find a School’ or for information on becoming a member or associate member school go to ‘Membership’.
The membership options for individuals relate to honorary membership.
Does the Australian Jujitsu Federation award gradings?
Yes. Provided a person is a member of a member school … the AJF on request from a head of school may either provide assistance with establishing a grading panel to conduct a grading under the authority of the member school, or provide an independent grading panel to conduct a grading under the authority of the AJF.
The AJF does not issue or support the practice of awarding honorary grades.
Are there similar associations to the Australian Jujitsu Federation in Australia?
No … not recognised by the Australian Government and providing for jujitsu and the detailed related martial arts. There are groups that are not bound to the codes of practice, behaviour, or governance that are part of that recognition.
The only Government recognised jujitsu organisation in Australia is the Australian Jujitsu Federation Inc.
When did jujitsu/jujutsu commence in Australia?
The principal member school of the Australian Jujitsu Federation ‘Koshinryu Jujutsu Australia’, established by the graduate members of the former ‘Australian Society of Ju Jitsuans’ (ASJJ), holds a wealth of documents that clearly establish that jujitsu was being taught in Australia as early as 1906 together with other evidence that dates earlier with the oldest records dating to visits of war training ships of the Japanese navy in the late 1800s.
What are the benefits of joining the Australian Jujitsu Federation?
The benefits may differ from one school to another depending on what the school is looking for – for example NCAS accreditation for instructors; a national insurance plan; training opportunities; international competition; and so much more … you can view the benefits under the Membership tab
Does the Australian Jujitsu Federation provide Insurance for members?
YES … Member schools are definitely invited to participate in the AJF ‘National Insurance Plan’ and schools have direct access to our broker, without charge. However there is no compulsion to participate if a member wishes to go elsewhere for their insurance. We believe the rates are very competitive and furthermore the AJF takes no commission. More information can be found under the Membership tab.
To belong to the Australian Jujitsu Federation what are the fees?
Please note that it is the school that becomes the member, and the school pays an annual subscription, details on which are available under the ‘membership’ tab, click on ‘becoming a member’. There are no additional fees in relation to the number of students that may belong to the school. If the school has more than one location there is a small fee for each additional location, which is capped and may be discounted.
How do we join the Australian Jujitsu Federation?
This is very easy … simply have the head of your school complete and submit a membership application under the MEMBERSHIP TAB … This will be acknowledged and in most cases you will receive confirmation of membership in about 2 weeks. If you have any further questions, do not hesitate to contact the AJF.
How can I locate a good Jujitsu, Aikido, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, or Hapkido club?
Please refer to the ‘Find a School’ Tab … here you can both find details on all associate and member schools using two complimentary search options to find what you are seeking.