Sixteen Black Belt Candidates

Black Belt Testing Weekend!

Black Belt Testing Weekend brings with it the culmination of many years of training for sixteen worthy black belt candidates!

Eleven of those candidates will be testing for shodan (first-degree black belt) or jr. shodan (under 13).

A black belt is seen as the epitome of karate training and to many, the goal, the end of the road.  However, students who truly walk the path understand that a black belt is just the beginning.  Students who successfully achieve shodan will undergo a six (6) month probationary period before their black belt certificate is issued.  Black belt certificates differ from kyu rank (colored belt) certificates in that it bears the students photo and is specifically numbered and recorded with the organization.

Four of this weekend’s candidates will be testing for Nidan (second-degree black belt).

It has been said that a student isn’t considered serious by their sensei until at least second, if not third-degree black belt.  At shodan, a student has learned a solid level of basic skill.  For Nidan, the student has grown in understanding, ability, and has a deeper knowledge of applying those skills.

One candidate will test for yondan (fourth-degree black belt).

With the rank of yondan comes the title “Sensei”.  This individual has shown a mastery of skills, the ability to share his knowledge, and foremost, compassion.  For every ten thousand students that join a karate class, half will drop out the first month.  Of that five thousand, half will stay another month. Of those remaining, only one thousand will stay for six months and then quit.  Five hundred will study for a year, but only one shall go onto teaching others what they have learned.  A Sensei is one in ten thousand!

All afternoon classes will be canceled on Saturday, March 20, and all activities are canceled on Sunday, March 21.   There are no spectators for testing.  OSU!

black belts to be awarded

_______________________________________Russ Jarem

Hanshi Russ Jarem, 8th-degree black belt

Susan Warzek

Kyoshi Susan Warzek, 7th-degree black belt & US BUDOKAI KARATE of Clifton Park have been repeatedly selected as the communities’ #1 Martial Arts School!

Established in 1980 by Master Instructor, Hanshi Russ Jarem an 8th degree Black Belt, US Budokai Karate and for pre-school children ages 4-6 and elementary age kids ages 7 and up are designed to develop the skills needed for a successful in school and later in life.

US Budokai Karate Adult Karate training is a complete adult fitness and conditioning program for adults who want to lose weight, get (and stay in shape) or learn self-defense in a supportive environment.  A place to develop mind, body and spirit.

Instructors can answer questions or be contacted 24 hours or the day, 7 days a week at or call directly at 518-383-0484. You can also visit our website at

The US Budokai Karate is centrally located in the Capital District Area in Saratoga County, New York at 215 Guideboard Road, Clifton Park, NY  12065.