Gradings take place every few months or so, in which students will be tested on what they have learned during classes and will be awarded a coloured Belt or Tag depending on their level of proficiency.

White sash being the lowest grade and Black sash the highest. The students grade is shown by a coloured sash worn around their waist. For each grade the student must accomplish and show things such as stances, hand and foot techniques, fitness,sparring and also forms. The professional image of uniforms is the pride of the club.

We will tell the student what tag/belt he or she is grading for and what they must learn to grade according to their preferred level (or at the level we think is appropriate) once a student starts training and grading they will have more fun and they will want to train more to get a higher level.

In the grading system the tags and belts may vary in colour from the first (white) to the last (black). There are 8 different coloured Tags and Belts (although the Black Belt rank is itself divided into 6).

The Belts and Tags available:

white.gif 1st grade - white
yellow.gif 2nd grade - yellow


3rd grade -red
green.gif 4th grade -green
purple.gif 5th grade - purple

6th grade - orange
blue.gif 7th grade - blue
brown.gif 8th grade - brown
black.gif 9th grade - black

The grading system:


We have adopted a system of coloured belts or sashes which are awarded to students as they progress through the syllabus. This article explains the colour system.


Traditionally there is no grading system in the Chinese martial arts. Rather, students in a Chinese martial arts school would be ranked in a manner similar to that of a family placing the eldest at the head. Of course in the case of a martial arts school age would not itself used to measure seniority but rather the length of time spent in the school. As such students entering such a school would be expected to pay respect to their seniors, even if in time they became more proficient than them.

WhirlWind Fist Kung Fu has however introduced a grading system with coloured belts or sashes being awarded to students as they progress. The Chinese sash differs from the Japanese 'obi' belts in that it is rather wider and made from less heavy fabric. In principle the sash can be used to support the lower back and torso during heavy exertion.

There are twelve student grades.

  • Grades one to three are the beginner grades,
  • Grades four to eight are the intermediate grades,
  • Grades nine and higher are senior grades


We do grading monthly, when the students can choose to take the next grade if they feel ready. For the basic grades several months is normally plenty of time. For the intermediate and advanced grades six to twelve months is normally necessary. 

Self Confidence:

We aim to make the gradings a positive experience for the children, however it is a test, and as such is a challenge.  We believe self confidence grows from overcoming adversity, and so we feel it is our responsibility to give our students the opportunity to meet and overcome challenges.  We believe this is when we find out what we are made of, and we give our students the time to find this out and to be able to develop their character in a positive environment.


Advanced Level (Black):
When the students pass their twelfth grade, they receive their Black Tag. This signifies they have completed the WhirlWind Fist Kung Fu Syllabus.

What you need to know:

Grading takes place once a month or so. It is a chance to demonstrate to yourself all that you have learnt in training up to that stage. Grading is also the only way to advance in belt rank and thus be allowed to learn more advanced techniques.


The grading syllabus is split into a variety of sections:

  • Punching / Kicking Techniques
  • Forms – a sequence of movements based on fighting techniques
  • Form Applications – a sequence demonstrating the practical application of the forms
  • One-Step Sparring – a series of self-defence techniques
  • Sparring – contact sparring practice to demonstrate you technique and ability


When attending a grading session then are a few things you need to remember:

Full Uniform – To take part in grading you will be required to wear the full kit; WhirlWind Fist Kung Fu T-Shirt, Kung Fu trousers and your current belt. If you dont have the WhirlWind Fist Kung Fu T-Shirt you may also wear a plain white T-shirt, but the WhirlWind Fist Kung Fu T-Shirt is preferable. Those without uniform may not be permitted to grade.

In order to grade you must first be registered as a member of “WhirlWind Fist Kung Fu” with Pete.