Becoming a black belt is not just about knowing your kata and having a good standard of kihon and kumite. It goes much deeper than just the physical. Those of us that are privileged to wear the belt should understand the roles and responsibilities that come with it.
When a student puts on their black belt they automatically become a role model. Other students, especially children, look upon black belt students/instructors with a sense of awe. It is all they want to become…it is what many, if not most people start training in karate for in the first place. Earning your black belt and reaching the required standard is a fantastic achievement, similar to earning a university degree. You receive your black belt and a certificate to go with it. That’s the tangible evidence that you have made the grade.