At Harris Holt Martial Arts, the karate belts and ranks provide an indication of the student having achieved a particular skill level. This is useful for students because it helps give them an indication on how they are progressing. When a student reaches a new belt rank (called kyu), they are encouraged to work harder to progress to the next kyu. This also encourages them to set short term goals and allows a sense of accomplishment in their karate skills.
It is beneficial for the Sensei as well as it allows students to be organized quickly during class. The belt also enables the instructor to know what level of mastery each individual student has attained and at what level they can be challenged to progress.
For other students in class, the ranking lets them know what skill level to expect from their fellow students. This makes pairing students for partner training easier and helps newer students know where to look for the more experienced students for additional support.
The further you advance in the study of Karate, the more precision and fighting spirit is expected in the performance of all techniques. Familiarity with Dojo etiquette, understanding Japanese terminology, and demonstrating a positive attitude are also increasingly expected.