The New York Budo Association follows a dan/kyu system like that used for many other modern martial art forms. Ranking in Ryushin Shouchi-ryu is overseen by Kunikazu Yahagi, Souke.

Most of these rankings are awarded to students when they visit Japan or when Yahagi Soke visits NY. The instructors at NYBA can award rankings up to 1st KYU (3rd KYU, 2nd KYU and 1st KYU), independently of Japan. After being awarded 1st KYU, students will then be eligible for Shodan (based on our recommendation).

The awarding of rank reflects progress in the Ryushin Shouchi Ryu curriculum. A student who attends class regularly can expect to test for shodan (first-degree black belt) in two to three years.

Regular rankings occur every two to three years, up to the rank of yondan (fourth degree black belt). Godan (fifth degree) rank is usually attained ten years after yondan, at which time the student is permitted to teach on her own if they wish.

Testing and certificate fees are determined by Japan and are not included in your monthly and annual dues.

The fees are determined by the current Yen – Dollar exchange rate. For more information, Ryushin Shouchi Ryu Certificate & Testing Fees


Sankyu (三級) (3rd Class) Yellow Belt
Nikyu (二級) (2nd Class) Red Belt
Ikkyu (一級) (1st Class) Brown Belt
Shodan (初段) Beginning Black Belt
Nidan (二段) 2nd Degree Black Belt
Sandan (三段) 3rd Degree Black Belt
Yodan (四段) 4th Degree Black Belt
Godan (五段) 5th Degree Black Belt
Rokudan (六段) 6th Degree Black Belt
Snichidan (七段) 7th Degree Black Belt
Hachidan (八段) 8th Degree Black Belt
Kyudan (九段) 9th Degree Black Belt
Shihan (師範宗家) Master Soke