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Grading Information




See the full CKF Grading Policy.

Details of upcoming gradings can be found in the main and discipline-specific news sections of this website. The details will have links to the written exam—please use those links and do not use old written exams. If the links are not posted, the exam is not yet available.

Please note that the deadline for both application and written exams is usually 2 weeks before the exam date.

Written exams are submitted to the special email addresses given at the top of the exam. Written exams are not the application, you must apply separately.


Annual Grading Schedule

Gradings held by the CKF are listed below for planning purposes. Gradings listed as “major” will usually include grading for 5 Dan and above. Grading may not proceed as planned from time to time, so please look for notifications via email and on the website.

Early May: Saskatoon
June: Vancouver, Toronto and sometimes Montreal
Late November/early December: Vancouver and Toronto (major)

June: Vancouver and Toronto
Late November/early December: Vancouver and Toronto (major)


August: Vancouver
Late November/early December: Toronto

If you are challenging an exam that is part of a special event such as a seminar or tournament, you must still apply separately through your CKF membership account.


Applying for Kyu or Dan Grading

Any Canadian resident grading in Canada must be a CKF member. If you reside in another country or are visiting Canada for a short time, see instructions for Foreign Candidates Grading in Canada. Candidates should follow the following steps for registration:

  1. Register for your grading by logging into your CKF Member Account
  2. Your CKF membership must be paid up to the current year
  3. If you have not paid your CKF dues, you will be required to pay dues for all years since you last paid your membership. There are exceptions to this rule, for details see the CKF Back Dues Policy
  4. Submit the written exam (if required) by the grading deadline.

Click here for instructions on how to complete the Online Grading Application Process [PDF].

Links to the written exams are posted on the official grading notification post and email from the CKF. Please do not use old exams. If there is no link, the exam is not yet available.

Please note that in general, the deadline for both application and written exams is 2 weeks before the exam date. A group confirmation email is sent near the deadline, so please check it to see that you are registered correctly.

Examinees may apply for exams one month less than the full eligibility to allow for variation in exam dates. If you are applying for your exam in the minimum time, you may have to wait until closer to the deadline to be eligible. If you have any trouble applying through our automated system, please contact the CKF Grading Secretary


Applying for Shogo

Candidates for shogo must meet the same membership requirements as those for kyu or dan.  Renshi may be applied for 1 year after rokudan has been awarded.  Kyoshi may be applied for 2 years after nanadan has been awarded.  Applications for renshi or kyoshi must be sent to the President and the appropriate national Chief Examiner, with a copy to the Secretary. The Secretary will arrange for the appropriate fees to be paid.  The application must contain:

  • Brief kendo resume including:
    • position of the applicant within CKF
    • major kendo activities to date
    • accomplishments as a leader and referee in the organization
    • records of attendance for official seminars held by CKF, FIK or any FIK affiliate
  • An essay of between 400 and 800 words in either French or English.  For guidance on the topics, please see appendix A of the Grading Policy
    • Renshi topic may be either “The Significance of Shinai” or “The Significance of Reiho”
    • Kyoshi topic is “My Life-long Kendo/Iaido/Jodo”
  • Kyoshi applications must also include a letter of recommendation from any CKF dojo leader


Special Circumstances

CKF Members Grading in Foreign Countries

CKF members in good standing may grade in other FIK countries, subject to the requirements of both the CKF and the foreign federation. Candidates can apply by following these steps:

  1. Contact the CKF President first by email to obtain permission for grading
  2. Pay the $20 processing fee through the Generic Payment Page. Indicate in the payment description “Your Name” and note  “Fee for foreign grading application”
  3. Complete and sign the Application Form for Kyu/Dan Examination in a Foreign Country [PDF] and send it to the CKF President with a CC to the CKF Secretary.
  4. The President will return the signed form to you, and you may then use it in your application to the foreign federation

Each federation has its own procedure for application. In the case of the AJKF, you must use either the AJKF Application Form 1D to 5D or the AJKF Application Form 6D up. You must also follow whatever procedure is required by the grading event itself.

Foreigners Grading in Canada

Foreign candidates wishing to register for grading in Canada must follow these steps:
  1. Create an account in the CKF Membership System: this is a one-time operation and your account will be used for all future gradings. If you do not have an account, please go to the Foreign Member Registration page and create a Membership ID. Please do not create a normal CKF member account.
  2. Obtain a letter or form of permission signed by your federation president. NOTE: US applicants see this AUSKF page for information. Note that under the US process, you must submit an application first to your regional federation and then to your national federation: the process takes about a month. Please allow enough time.
  3. Send your CKF membership number and electronic scans of the permission letter and your last certificate to the CKF Grading Secretary. A certificate is not required for ikkyu applicants.
  4. Upon approval of the application from the Secretary, log into your account. Click on the “kendo grading”, “iaido grading” or “jodo grading” button as appropriate and follow the instructions. Note that until your application has been approved as per step 3, clicking on this button will display a message indicating you need authorization.
  5. Submit your written exam (if applicable) by the grading deadline. Links to written exams are made available when grading notifications are posted on the website and by email. Please do not use old exams. If there is no link, the exam is not yet available.

FIK Grading Guidelines

The International Kendo Federation has laid out guidelines for Dan-Kyu rank and judging requirements for all affiliated nations. The CKF strictly adheres to these guidelines.

FIK Standard Guideline for Dan/Kyu Examination – Revised May 24, 2012


Examination and Certificate Fee Schedule

Please note that both the examination and registration fees must be paid in advance. This is done automatically through the on-line application. In the event that the candidate fails, the registration fee is refunded. The examination fee is kept in the event of a failure or a no-show. If the candidate cancels with sufficient notice, both fees will be refunded.

Kyu/Dan applied for
Postulant au
Examination Fee
Frais d’exan
Registration (Certificate) Fee
Frais du certificat
Japanese Certificate
Certificat version japonaise*
1st Kyu Junior $ 25.00 $ 25.00 N/A
1st Kyu $ 35.00 $ 35.00 N/A
1st Dan Junior $ 30.00 $ 50.00 + $ 80.00
1st Dan $ 50.00 $ 60.00 + $ 80.00
2nd Dan $ 60.00 $ 90.00 + $ 80.00
3rd Dan $ 70.00 $ 150.00 + $ 80.00
4th Dan $ 75.00 $ 325.00 $ 0
5th Dan $ 75.00 $ 425.00 $ 0
6th Dan $ 75.00 $ 550.00 $ 0
7th Dan $ 75.00 $ 700.00 $ 0
Renshi $ 100.00 $ 500.00 $ 0
Kyoshi $ 0 $ 600.00 $ 0
Hanshi $ 0 $ 0 $ 0
Registration for foreign certificate
Enregistrement d’un certificat étranger
$ 50
Replacement certificate
Remplacer un certificat
$ 50 $ 70
Rank confirmation letter
Lettre de confirmation
$ 20

*All certificates for 4th Dan and up will be written in Japanese. All names on Japanese Certificates will be written in Roman alphabet unless otherwise specified on the application form. Les certificats pour tout grade de 4e Dan et plus seront libellés en japonais. Tous les noms, à moins d’indication contraire sur le formulaire d’application, seront inscrits en caractères romains.


CKF Grading Guidelines Overview

Consult the full CKF Grading Policy -English [PDF] for complete rules and regulations.


Applicants must be members in good standing of the Canadian Kendo Federation. This means that all yearly membership fees must be paid in full in advance of grading.

Applicants (Kendo, Iaido and Jodo) must have the following periods of practice:

Dan/Kyu Practice
1 Kyu
1 (Sho) Dan Over 3 months after granting of 1 Kyu 13 Years and over
2 (Ni) Dan Over 1 years after granting of 1st Dan
3 (San) Dan Over 2 years after granting of 2nd Dan
4 (Yon) Dan Over 3 years after granting of 3rd Dan
5 (Go) Dan Over 4 years after granting of 4th Dan
6 (Roku) Dan Over 5 years after granting of 5th Dan
7 (Nana) Dan Over 6 years after granting of 6th Dan
8 (Hachi) Dan Over 10 years after granting of 7th Dan 46 Years and over

Kata Requirements:

Kendo Kata shall be examined as follows:

Kyu/Dan Applied for Examination Subjects
1 Kyu Kendo Kihonwaza Keiko Ho 1 – 9 Hon
1 Dan Kendo no Kata Tachi 1 – 3 Bon
2 Dan Kendo no Kata Tachi 1 – 5 Hon
3 Dan Kendo no Kata Tachi 1 – 7 Hon
4th Dan & Up Kendo no Kata Tachi 7 Hon & Kodachi 3 Bon

Iaido Kata shall be examined as follows:

Kyu/Dan Applied for Examination Subjects Time Limit ***
1 Kyu & 1 Dan 5 ZenKenRen* of candidate’s choice 6 minutes
2 – 3 Dan 5 ZenKenRen* as selected by the examiners.** 6 minutes
4 – 5 Dan 1 Koryu of candidate’s choice
4 ZenKenRen* as selected by the examiners.
6 minutes
6 Dan & Up 2 Koryu of candidate’s choice
4 ZenKenRen* as selected by the examiners.
7 minutes

* Zen Nihon Kendo Renmei Iaido – All Japan Kendo Federation Iaido set
** ZenKenRen kata for 2 dan and up will be specified on the day of the examination. Koryu kata will not be specified.
*** Examination time commences from the bow to the Shomen after entering the examination area and ends when the candidate stands up holding the sword to the side after performing the final bow.

Jodo Kata shall be examined as follows:

Kyu/Dan Applied for Examination Subjects
1 Kyu First 3 Kihon, Seitei Kata* #1, 2, 4 Jo and Tachi side
1 Dan Kihon**+Seitei Kata 2 – 6 both sides
2 Dan Kihon+Seitei Kata 3 – 7 both sides
3 Dan Kihon+Seitei Kata 4 – 8 both sides
4 Dan Seitei Kata 5 – 9 both sides
5 Dan Seitei Kata 6 – 10 both sides
6 Dan & Up 6 Seitei Kata as decided by the examiners**

* Zen Nihon Kendo Renmei Jodo – All Japan Kendo Federation Jodo set
** Kihon (Tandouku) for 1-3 dan and Seitei Kata for 6-7 dan will be specified on the day of the examination


Passage de grade: Règles et procédure

La politique complète est disponible ici.


Tout candidat pour un grade doit être en règle avec la Fédération Canadienne de Kendo et avoir acquitté sa cotisation annuelle.

Période de pratique réglementaire pour tout postulant à l’obtention d’un grade en Kendo, Iaido ou Jodo:

Dan/Kyu Période
minimale entre deux grades
1er  Kyu
1er (Sho) Dan Plus de 3 mois depuis l’obtention du 1er Kyu 13 ans et
2e (Ni) Dan Plus de 1 ans depuis l’obtention du 1er Dan
3e (San) Dan Plus de 2 ans depuis l’obtention du 2e Dan
4e (Yon) Dan Plus de 3 ans depuis l’obtention du 3e Dan
5e (Go) Dan Plus de 4 ans depuis l’obtention du 4e Dan
6e (Roku) Dan Plus de 5 ans depuis l’obtention du 5e Dan
7e (Nana) Dan Dan Plus de 6 ans depuis l’obtention du 6e Dan
8e (Hachi) Dan Dan Plus de 10 ans depuis l’obtention du 7e Dan 46 ans et

L’examen sur les Katas

L’examen sur les Katas de Kendo est déterminé comme suit:

1er Kyu Kendo Kihonwaza Keiko Ho 1 – 9 Hon
1er Dan Kendo no Kata Tachi 1 – 3 Bon
2e Dan Kendo no Kata Tachi 1 – 5 Hon
3e Dan Kendo no Kata Tachi 1 – 7 Hon
4e Dan et plus Kendo no Kata Tachi 7 Hon & Kodachi 3 Bon

L’examen portant sur les katas en Iaido est déterminé comme suit:

Postulant au Katas demandés Limite de temps ***
1er Kyu et 1er Dan 5 ZenKenRen* au choix du postulant 6 minutes
2e Dan et 3e Dan 5 ZenKenRen* déterminés par les examinateurs ** 6 minutes
4e Dan et 5e Dan 1 Koryu au choix du postulant
4 ZenKenRen* déterminés par les examinateurs
6 minutes
6e Dan et plus 2 Koryu au choix du postulant
4 ZenKenRen* déterminés par les examinateurs
7 minutes

* Zen Nihon Kendo Renmei –Fédération Internationale de Kendo
** Le kata ZenKenRen pour le 2e dan et plus sera précisé le jour de l’examen. Le kata Koryu ne sera pas spécifié. 
*** Le temps d’examen commence à partir de l’arc jusqu’au Shomen après être entré dans la zone d’examen et se termine lorsque le candidat se lève en tenant l’épée sur le côté après avoir exécuté l’arc final. 

L’examen sur les Katas de Jodo est déterminé comme suit:

1er Kyu 3 premières Kihon, Seitei Kata* #1, 2, 4 Jo et Tachi
1er Dan Kihon**+Seitei Kata 2 – 6 Jo et Tachi
2e Dan Kihon+Seitei Kata 3 – 7 Jo et Tachi
3e Dan Kihon+Seitei Kata 4 – 8 Jo et Tachi
4e Dan Seitei Kata 5 – 9 Jo et Tachi
5e Dan Seitei Kata 6 – 10 Jo et Tachi
6e et plus 6 Seitei Kata déterminés par les examinateurs **

* Zen Nihon Kendo Renmei Jodo – Ensemble de Jodo de la Fédération japonaise de Kendo
** Kihon (Tandouku) pour 1-3 dan et Seitei Kata pour 6-7 dan seront précisés le jour de l’examen

Tarification en vigueur


Special Fees

Grade Registration Fee Policy

Once a challenger has passed a grading, that new rank will be registered by the CKF. The fees for this registration have been called the “certificate fee” but of course include much more than the actual menjo issued to the member.

The fees for registering each grade are set by the Board of Directors and can be found above.

Japanese Language Certificates

At 4dan all certificates are issued in the Japanese language and are hand-written. If members below 4dan wish a Japanese certificate there is an additional fee which can also be found above.

The member’s name will be written in English on their certificate. If the challenger wishes the name to be written in Japanese an image sample of that name MUST accompany the application to grade. If the Japanese language sample of the name is not received with the application the name will be written in English.

If the member wishes the name to be written in Japanese at a later date this will be considered a re-issued certificate and an additional fee will be charged.

If you require help finding the correct kanji for your name, please mention this when you apply for a certificate and we will help you.

Re-Issuing Certificates

Certificates which are re-issued to replace one which is lost, or to change the name on a hand-written Japanese certificate will be subject to a re-issuing fee. This fee is currently set to $50.00 for the printed certificates from 1kyu to 3dan and $70.00 for the hand-written Japanese Certificate.