What are the belts (ranks) in karate and how long does it take to reach them?

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Beginning students first go through the "kyu" ranks. Students typically rise in rank by one kyu every 3 to 6 months. Kyu ranks and the color belts that go with them are: White belt - 8th kyu, 7th kyu Green belt - 6th kyu, 5th kyu, 4th kyu Brown belt - 3rd kyu, 2nd kyu, 1st kyu Six months after students attain 1st kyu, they may then start testing for "dan" (black belt) ranks. Students who train regularly typically require 3 to 5 years to reach the first level (Shodan) of black belt. Each succeeding black belt level requires increasingly more time to attain. For example, it generally takes at least 2 years to go from Shodan (1st degree) to Nidan (2nd degree), at least 3 years between Nidan and Sandan (3rd degree), and at least 5 years between Sandan and Yondan (4th degree). more
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