What is it?
Gradings are a chance to test your progress and also provides a concrete goal to work towards. There is a syllabus for each level with specific techniques that you are tested on, and also a a set of requirements for the skill level expected for each grade. You can do your first grading after 4-6 months of regular training.
In Scotland there is a National Grading for all the KMG schools in the country. This takes place in Stirling twice a year, in March/April and October/November.
A lot of people take part in gradings to set a goal, challenge themselves, measure their progress. You also get a different kind of "training" experience than a normal class, and you meet krav maga practitioners from all over the country.
However, there is no requirement to grade when you are training in krav maga. Many like the regular training but don't feel the need to grade, and for those who don't need the external goal, one can always set personal goals to work toward and focus on learning and gaining skill without focusing on a specific syllabus.
The level system
Our ranks are structured in Practitioner levels: 1-5, Graduate levels: 1-5 and Expert levels: 1-5.
For Practitioner and Graduate levels you should do at least around six months of regular training before you can try for the next grade.
We don't have belts to show the rank, but instead patches that are worn on the training trousers.
Yellow Practitioner patches, blue Graduate patches, and black Expert patches.The bars show the level. Two bars on a yellow patch is Practitioner level 2.
But how does it work, really?
The short answer is: you won't know how a grading is like until you do one.
The first grading, P1, usually feels quite intimidating for everyone, at least until you get there and get started. This is perfectly normal. It's new and you don't know yet what you're getting yourself into. But don't worry, those who have done the P1 grading before you will be happy to tell you stories of how tiring their grading was!
So do I need to be a super fit krav master to go?
No, absolutely not. The grading will be physically demanding, there will probably be burpees, but regardless of your level of fitness, you are expected to do your best, no more. Show determination and keep going even if you are tired. You'll be sweaty, sore and exhausted by the end, but the feeling when you are done, knowing that you gave it your best, is so very, totally worth it.
You should prepare for the grading, make sure you know all the techniques in the syllabus. Don't hesitate to ask your instructor or your fellow practitioners to help you with techniques you are uncertain about —before the grading. Once at the grading you are there to show what you know, not to learn techniques that you haven't done before. Though you are likely to pick up some details you hadn't noticed or been made aware of before.
A grading is physically tiring and you need to stay focussed to show good techniques, but it can also be fun, and definitely rewarding. Go for it.
What do I need for the grading?
KMG passport - ordered when you book your grading
KMG t-shirt and KMG trousers or black trousers with no affiliation marks. Indoor training shoes recommended.
Plenty of water/liquid, and snacks: nuts, bananas, energy bars. You're going to use a lot of energy, you'll need to refuel. There won't be a food break, so bring things you can gobble down in shorter breaks.
Where is the grading going to be?
The Peak, Stirling, Forthside Way, Stirling, FK8 1QZ United Kingdom
When is it?
7 November 2015
Practitioner Level 5 & Graduate Levels – 8.00am.