presented Alivia Franz with her Red Top on July 31, accepting her into the junior rank black belt assistants program. To be considered for the program a student must submit
a request in a typed letter to Grandmaster Crandall. It often takes months
before the candidate may be accepted into the program where Grandmaster
Crandall and the other instructors will train them in their new responsibilities. Many of the aspects of Red Top leadership program are documented in the book Leadership Piece by Piece by Master Stalloch and Grandmaster Crandall.
In the American Martial Arts Institute only
adult black belts that are 18 years or older may be trained to become
instructors; however, junior rank black belts often possess the same love
of the art and desire to help others in their martial arts training. The
concept of the circle is an important one in all traditional styles; a
student one day gives back to the art that has become a way of life.
As a young adult under the age of 18, those junior rank
black belts have not yet had to take on the responsibilities that most
adults have, the maturity of their personality is essential in the true
understanding and teaching of the martial arts and that has not yet taken
place. These junior rank black belts are role models for other students.
They set examples with their attitudes, their enthusiasm, and their skills.
The junior rank black belt assistant program, often referred to as the
Red Top program, provides these students with an opportunity to assist
certified adult black belt instructors during children’s classes.
As assistants they do not teach the style, but they do get to learn skills
such as running stretching, holding a shield for punches and kicks, and
being a partner for demonstrations. Red tops still train in regular classes.
Congratulations to Alivia Franz.