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What is the Pink Belt?

July 5, 2012

A word from Women Empowered instructor, Eve Gracie

As with every program in Gracie Jiu-Jitsu (Gracie Combatives, Master Cycle and Gracie Bullyproof) awarding belts is the traditional way to acknowledge progress and accomplishment. With the development of the Gracie Women Empowered program, the pink belt was created to acknowledge completion and mastery of the course. It not only symbolizes dedication to the techniques of the program, but also an understanding of the philosophy that is essential for survival in life-threatening scenarios. We hope that this reflexive understanding of both the philosophy and techniques will instill a confidence in women that reduces their risk of ever becoming a target in the first place. Since the program was created we have watched women dedicate countless hours to earning their pink belt, and with every pink belt earned, the value and prestige of this belt has become undeniable.

Understandably, some women have asked, "Why was pink the color chosen for the belt?"

When selecting the belt color, pink came to us as the only distinct common color not yet used in jiu-jitsu belt promotions (white, yellow, orange, green, blue, purple, brown, black, red had all been taken). Because the techniques and philosophy of the Women Empowered program differ from the general Gracie Jiu-Jitsu curriculum, we felt that introducing a distinctly colored belt would be a way to symbolize the uniqueness of the program.

Initially we realized that tying the pink belt to the Women Empowered program could be seen as too gender specific and therefore limiting, but when we consider the fact that women are encouraged to continue earning all Gracie Jiu-Jitsu belts from blue to black, it became clear that the pink belt isn't a limitation at all, but rather a beginning for many women who might have never otherwise given Gracie Jiu-Jitsu a chance.

With a program as enlightening and empowering as this one, I hope that the pink belt, and all that it takes to earn it, will bring power to a color that some view as uniquely feminine, or even "weak." In martial arts, the meaning of the belt is not determined by its color, but rather, the amount of time, sweat, and dedication that goes into earning it. For me, and other dedicated students of the Women Empowered program who have devoted countless hours to earning our pink belts, it has become synonymous with strength, technique, and empowerment.

- Eve Gracie, Women Empowered Instructor

Video: Pink Belt in Action
On May 13, 2012, Sara Wondra passed the Pink Belt Qualification Test with an exceptional score of 96. Considering she had no previous experience in martial arts, and trained exclusively from home using the Women Empowered DVD Collection, it's quite an impressive display of technique and conviction.

To watch the complete Pink Belt Test submitted by Sara Wondra, click here, and scroll down to the bottom of the page.

New Video: Pink Belt in Action