The answer to this question of timing goes back to Goals as we discussed on "The Importance of Goals" link. A person does not want to put all of his/her focus into just getting a higher belt. It is much better to be a great white belt than to be an average yellow belt or to be a great yellow belt than an average orange belt, and so on. It is much more important to become a better martial artist. Now with that said, you must understand that the goal is the black belt.
Belt ranks go in this order - white, yellow, orange, blue, purple, green, red, red/black stripe, brown, brown/black stripe and black which itself can go up to an 8th degree black belt. You, as martial artists progress up the belt ladder step by step, testing at each level. Each test is designed to make you perform under pressure. This causes people to become nervous. You will get nervous many times in your life and this is a fact called "the reality of life".
We at the studio are here to help you face the realities of life and take each step. Before you test, you should review your material. The problem comes when people fail to prepare. If you fail to prepare then you have prepared to fail. People become afraid of failure. We need you to learn to face your fears. We are not trying to harm or frighten you, but to help.
It is important that you set some goals for your testing. Have a realistic date set on which you plan to take your next test. Do not becoome a test dodger because you are afraid to fail. However, if theere is a reason you feel that you are behind, let me know. The system will not let you down if you work at it. Take your tests so you don't stagnate. We have found that a person will lose interest when he/she becomes stagnant and stays in a belt too long. If you stay in a belt too long you are not doing your homework. REMEMBER, it is better to train for the personal glory of becoming a great martial artist, than the material aspects of becoming a higher belt.
Our system is designed to take 3 to 5 years to complete a blackbelt. This means continuous training of at least two or three times a week, religiously! It is important that you understand martial arts are an individual growing stage, designed for the person who is taking it. We have a destination to reach. The odds of a student reaching black belt status is 99%, guaranteed. The odds of the quitter getting a black belt are zero. Now with that said, the ball is in your court
"Are you Blackbelt material or not?"