During the course of my karate training, the T word is not usually discussed. It was something that happened or something that you were told. I have mixed feelings about the T word. You see, I remember anxiously waiting for the word as a kyu rank. The dates were posted on the dojo calender so everyone was aware of the possibility but it was not a topic of conversation. As a young kyu rank, I may have hoped but I never expected.
I earned a black belt and the T word took on a different meaning. As a black belt student, the T word is my reminder of how much there is to learn in comparison to what little I actually know.
I became an instructor and the T word changed completely. The focus of class and training time shifts to preparing others. In our dojo, the head instructor makes the final decision. As a class instructor, my role is to recommend.
There have been brief times in our dojo that I held the responsibility for the T word. My husband's injuries and surgeries sometimes prevented him from being in the dojo. I have witnessed the range of student reactions from happy and proud to disappointed and angry.
I am sure you know the word I am referring to....TESTING.
Even now...I must admit...I am slightly uncomfortable writing about it.
It is meant to be between the instructor and the student.