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Non-Ranking Options for Kenpo Students: Advantages & Disadvantages?
I currently have a non-ranking option for students in my school, as my first priority is teaching practical self-preservation, with character development coming in a close second, and everything else falling in after based on the student's reasons for training. Thus, I felt it prudent to offer the option to train in the basics, drills and self-defense techniques without the option to test for a belt rank or learn the forms. Mr. Mills has said that "Kenpo is another word for truth", which I try to guide my every school function/philosophy by. And truth is, some may simply be looking for the ability to defend themselves without fully embracing a functional martial art.
Thus, I'd like to solicite some perspectives on the pros and cons of having such a training option available, and shall provide a couple of points for each perspective to start out:
* Such an option will allow the non-traditional student access to practical training.
* A student in a non-ranking option may eventually wish to transition as a traditional student.
* Though these students are studying/training Kenpo, they cannot one day carry the system as instructors.
* These students miss out on the goal-setting lessons found in a traditional belt-progression system.