As most of you all ready know, Muay Thai has no official ranking system other than your fight status, this works well in Thailand, however in the states most students of Martial arts are use to Belt ranking systems or other forms of progression and achievement acknowledgment such as certificates and colored belts.
You as instructors and gym owners must decide how you will incorporate the many forms of ranking systems into your own schools, and find the system that works best for you. Below are some of the top Grading and ranking systems used today by instructors and Muay Thai institutions everywhere.
Listed Below are the top 3 Ranking systems in use today
Khan level ranking system
Many schools have adopted the Khan level progression system including the Muay Thai federation , and other Muay Thai schools . This system of student progression is outlined here.
1st Khan - White - Druang Rang / Prajioud / Prajeat 2nd Khan - Yellow - Druang Rang / Prajioud / Prajeat 3rd Khan - Yellow and White - Druang Rang / Prajioud / Prajeat 4th Khan - Green - Druang Rang / Prajioud / Prajeat 5th Khan - Green and White - Druang Rang / Prajioud / Prajeat 6th Khan - Blue - Druang Rang / Prajioud / Prajeat 7th Khan - Blue and White - Druang Rang / Prajioud / Prajeat 8th Khan - Brown - Druang Rang / Prajioud / Prajeat 9th Khan - Brown and White - Druang Rang / Prajioud / Prajeat 10th Khan - Red - Druang Rang / Prajioud / Prajeat 11th Khan - Red and White - Druang Rang / Prajioud / Prajeat ( Jr instructor ) Instructor trainee 12th Khan - Red and Yellow - Druang Rang / Prajioud / Prajeat ( Kru / instructor ) 13th Khan - Red and White - Druang Rang / Prajioud / Prajeat ( Senior Kru / instructor ) Kru Yai 14th Khan - Silver - Druang Rang / Prajioud / Prajeat ( Master Instructor ) Ajarn / Ajahn / Arjarn 15th Khan - Gold - Druang Rang / Prajioud / Prajeat ( Grand Master )
Other Muay Thai Schools like - JD Muay Thai K1 - has the same as above except for a level 15 Khan that is Silver and Gold - Druang Rang / Prajioud / Prajeat 16th Khan is Gold - Druang Rang / Prajioud / Prajeat - Grand Master
Tassels only Ranking system
Many Schools use a armband Tassel system only for ranking students the Tassels are called Druang Rang or Prajeat or Prajioud
White - Beginner Student Yellow - Basic Knowledge Green - intermediate Blue - Advanced knowledge of Muay Thai techniques Black - All basic and Advanced knowledge of Muay Thai techniques and theory Red - Jr Instructor Red and Black - Instructor / Kru
Certificate only Level Grading and Rank
Other schools use the Level system with Certificate only ranking, Listed Below are the most popular Certificate only systems. This system is very popular with most gyms and with instructors who have previous martial arts experience before teaching Muay Thai.
level 0 - ( white belt equivalent ) - 6 months Level 1 - ( Yellow Belt Equivalent ) - 6 months Level 2 - ( Orange Belt Equivalent ) - 6 Months Level 3 - ( Purple belt Equivalent ) - 6 months Level 4 - ( Blue Belt Equivalent ) - 6 months Level 5 - ( Green Belt Equivalent ) - 6 months Level 6 - ( Brown Belt Equivalent ) - 6 months Level 7 - ( Black Belt Equivalent ) - 6 months ( 4 years of training ) Level 8 - ( Jr instructor - 2nd Dan/Degree Black Equivalent ) 5 - 6 years of training Level 9 - ( Instructor / Kru - 3rd Dan/Degree Black Equivalent ) - 8 years of training Level 10 - ( Senior Instructor / Kru - 5th Dan/Degree Black ) - ( 5 years of teaching ) Level 11 - ( Master Instructor / Kru - 8th/Dan/Degree Black ) - ( 10 + years as instructor ) Level 12 - ( Grand Master Instructor / Kru - 10th Dan/Degree Black ) - ( 20 years as instructor )
Please Note: All Black Belt Dan/Degree's shown above are only representing Equivalents for Western and United States Martial Arts Students and for the Art of Muay Thai Kick Boxing or Muay Boran Martial Arts there are no official ranking systems for Muay Boran or Muay Thai Kick Boxing
Some Final thoughts on Ranking systems :
Many Variations of these Ranking systems are in effect today, they are easy to incorporate into most gyms and schools. many schools use levels in between these 12 to rank the students up every 3 months instead of every 6 months, like giving the student a white with yellow stripe after 3 months and so on. You must find the right system for your school or gym, these top 3 systems are just example guide lines to help you get started.
United World Muay Thai Association was formed in 1993 by Vut kamnark who saw the need for a better governing body over Muay Thai fighting regulations in Thai land and in the United States.