Villari’s Customs & Traditions

School Rules & Principles

Treat others the way you’d want to be treated.

Do the things you know you should do, without being told, for the sake of improving yourself.

Conduct yourself appropriately for each situation, not allowing others to control or manipulate you or your emotions.

Belts, Colors, Uniforms & Ranks

Belt Colors

There are lots of colored belts in our ranking system! Here’s the order in which you’ll wear them as you progress:

  1. White
  2. Yellow
  3. Orange
  4. Purple
  5. Blue
  6. Blue w/Green Stripe
  7. Green
  8. Green w/Brown Stripe
  9. Brown w/Single Black Stripe
  10. Brown w/Double Black Stripe
  11. Brown w/Triple Black Stripe
  12. Black


If you’re going to wear a gi, or uniform, you should know a little bit about what you can wear, and at what rank:

  • Any student may wear a white gi at any time, though students who hold a white, yellow, or orange belt must only wear a white gi.
  • You may wear a black gi once you reach purple belt.
  • You may not mix black and white until either 2nd Dan (2nd Degree Black Belt), or you become the Chief Instructor of your own school.
  • You may wear red pants at 4th Dan.
  • You may wear a red top at 5th Dan (considered as Master-level rank)

Kyu Ranks

  • White (Mukyu / No kyu)
  • Yellow (Jukkyu / 10th kyu)
  • Orange (Kyukyu / 9th kyu)
  • Purple (Hachikyu / 8th kyu)
  • Blue (Nanakyu / 7th kyu)
  • Blue w/Green Stripe (Rokkyu / 6th kyu)
  • Green (Gokyu / 5th kyu)
  • Green w/Brown Stripe (Yonkyu / 4th kyu)
  • Brown w/Single Black Stripe (Sankyu / 3rd kyu)
  • Brown w/Double Black Stripe (Nikyu / 2nd kyu)
  • Brown w/Triple Black Stripe (Ikkyu / 1st kyu)

Dan (Black Belt) Ranks

  • Shodan (1st degree)
  • Nidan (2nd degree)
  • Sandan (3rd degree)
  • Yondan (4th degree)
  • Godan (5th degree)
  • Rokudan (6th degree)
  • Shichidan (7th degree)
  • Hachidan (8th degree)
  • Kudan (9th degree)
  • Judan (10th degree)

Patches & School Colors

Our School patch should be worn on the left-chest side of your uniform, and the US Flag should be worn on your right shoulder.

Our School patch has three primary colors: Black, Red, and Gold. Each color represents conceptual learning: black represents darkness, void of knowledge, or beginning; red represents effort and work, as well as mastery; gold represents enlightenment. And so, the colors of our patch show that we start, from the outside in darkness, and progress with supreme effort to achieve mastery, and ultimately, enlightenment. This is symbolic of the meaning of Kung Fu.

Animal Patches

If you are collecting patches for all five animals, it’s important to know where they go on your gi. The Dragon goes on right arm while the Tiger goes on left arm of uniform; this is symbolic of our roots as a Shaolin-based system, and is the emblem associated with Shaolin masters from long ago. Typically, the Crane will adorn one pant leg and the other pant leg will show either the Leopard or Snake, with the remaining unused patch placed elsewhere on your gi.

Bowing, Kneeling & Showing Respect

Bowing is a sign of respect, similar to a hand shake, which we perform as a common courtesy when practicing with each, and when entering and leaving the dojo. We also bow when starting class to show respect to our instructors, our flag, and Great Grandmaster Villari.

We kneel towards front of dojo when tying our belts before class as a sign of respect for the hard work we’ve put into earning it.  We also kneel when a higher ranked person is tying on their belt, as respect for their great effort.