Well, its almost one year ago that I launched the belt promotion/grading survey and I haven't managed to get round to posting the results, as initially promised. I've got lots of good excuses for this (including having a newborn son, moving to Japan and being crushed by PhD work) but the fact remains that an update for the BJJ community, who collectively put hundreds of hours into completing the survey, is long overdue!
As such, from now I'll be starting to post weekly updates that break down the interesting findings from the survey and hopefully help to provide some (partial) answers to longstanding questions surrounding BJJ belt promotions. I'll also be detailing how the findings relate to the ritual project I work on at Oxford and what exactly some of the more unusual questions were about ... but first up today is the basic demographics to help introduce who exactly the respondents are.
In total there were actually over 1,000 responses collected but due to dropouts/requests to keep data anonymous the final total sample ended up being 727. Women seem quite poorly represented with only 36 respondents but this could be representative of the overall proportion of women training (5% fits with my experience but I wonder if everyone else agrees?). There was a nice mix of experience levels but less national and ethnic diversity than hoped for. That said, given that the survey was in English and most respondents came from a selection of popular North American message forums such a skew was somewhat predictable.
I've represented the data in some infographics below and while some of it is rather unlikely to be relevant to the results or people's training experiences it is good to get a better idea of who the data analysed comes from.
The next post will start to dig into the more specific BJJ data, with a breakdown of the relevant BJJ demographics including team affiliations, years training, different schools attended, motivations for training and so on. Finally, just a quick note to say thanks to everyone who took part and for being so patient to hear about the results!