Of course, the person taking an exam (Examinee) is the "featured performer" and has a specific goal to achieve a specific rank. The Examinee will be asked to perform the Subjects to be Examined described in the Shintaido Examination Criteria. The Examinee may also be asked to show techniques not described in the Examination Criteria but appropriate to level of exam.

The Examinee can expect to receive clear instructions ftom the Exam Goreisha, but will not be given specific step-by-step direction.

The Examinee's performance is not simply an individualistic expression. An examination gives a Shintaido student the opportunity to show how he/she can act as a conduit for universal truth to shine through.

Before the Exam

Preparation immediately before an exam is obviously helpful but "cramming" may ultimately backfire. It is important to prepare long before the day of the exam by practicing in a sincere and consistent manner.

In order to prepare in advance, the Examinee:

  1. Determines when and where exams will be held in any given year. The Regional and/or National Technical Director should be able to provide this information.
  2. Discusses hislher intention to take a particular exam with an instructor. The instructor can then supervise the Examinee's regular keiko and make sure that the Examinee gets the necessary practice opportunities.
  3. Takes time to practice the required techniques with an instructor in the form of private lessons.
  4. Registers early with the Exam Coordinator/Gasshuku Registrar. This is the first official step towards starting the exam kata.
  5. Practices with others who will be taking exams, if the exams are held during a gasshuku or workshop.
  6. Prepares a keiko gi that is neat and clean. (a little soap and ironing works fine). This type of proper presentation is taken into account by the Examiners.
  7. Brings extra clothing, water, sunblock etc that may be needed while sitting for long periods of time.

During the Exam

Examinees are not judged on past performance. so it is important to "show your best" in the moment, at the time of the exam.

On the day of the exams, the Examinee arrives at least 30 minutes before the starting time in order to warm up. During the warm up period, take time to survey the layout of the exam dojo making sure where the Examineer's table is located and where the exams will take place.

The Examinee pays close attention to the instructions given by the Goreisha at all times. The Goreisha will guide you through the process. There are some procedures that the Examinee will be expected to know:

  1. When your name is called, answer "hai" or in English "present" .
  2. Stand up and bow before entering the exam "space".
  3. Walk towards the Goreisha and bow to greet him/her.
  4. Position yourself in front of (not too close) the Examineer's table and bow to them.

Kihon, Kata and Kumite

Kihon

The Examinee will first perform the required kihon. In the case of upper level exams, the Examinee may initially perform both kihon and kata or kata only.

Kihon is usually performed in a group. The Examinees should be aware of the position and rhythm of the other members of the group, but should not look to each other for "correct techniques". Examinees follow the gorei but do not assume the Goreisha will express the strong or directive type of energy provided in keiko.

It is very important for the Examinee to show his/her own powerful energy expression and kokyu during kihon. Don't hold back.

Kata

Before performing a kata, the Examinee announces the name of the kata. The Examinee positions him/herself so the Examiners can see all dimensions of the kata.

Kumite

The Goreisha determines kumite partners. In kumite where there is an attacker and defender, the attacker announces which attack will be used.

In general, the junior member (kohai) attacks the senior member (sempai) first. Sometimes the Goreisha may determine who attacks first.