Requirements For Nidan

Candidates must:

  1. Have a minimum of two consecutive years, prior to the exam, as an active and AJJF registered Shodan and hold current registration at the time of the Nidan exam. *
  2. Submit a copy of current AJJF registration card.
  3. Submit a copy of current Red Cross Standard or Community First Aid card.
  4. Submit a copy of current CPR card. CPR Requirement can be met with training in person or online.
  5. Submit an Application for Examination.
  6. Submit an Concussion Awareness Form.
  7. Submit a Letter of Recommendation from Sensei (in a sealed envelope) stating, in part, willingness to assume responsibility for applicant. [See Letter of Recommendation form]
  8. Submit a notebook containing an organized list of all the arts being examined, with a short description of how to do each art.
  9. Submit an AJJF Activity Sheet or copies of your Budo Pass with at least 4 AJJF approved mat activities during the 24 month period immediately preceding the exam date:
    1. Events that qualify: AJJF Sanctioned Convention, Mat Clinic, Camps, Seminars, and Competitions.  Events typically span a full day or multiple days.
    2. Classes that qualify: AJJF approved Black Belt Classes, Healing Classes, and DZRSI Mod’s.  Classes generally are a half day or less.  Even though the DZRSI Mod courses are multiple days, since they are testing for their jujitsu black belt, the candidate could count one event in each qualifying year. 
    3. Nidan: At least 4 AJJF approved mat activities during the 24 month period immediately preceding the exam date:
    4. Meet the required number of events in whatever combination you want for Nidan and above.  With at least one event in each year required that precedes the exam.  For example, a Sandan candidate needs 6 total events.  They can do 1 event in the first year, 4 in the second year, and 1 in the final year.
    5. The events in a given year can be selected from any of the qualified events, but only one can be selected from the qualified classes category.  The thinking is that a 2-3 hour class isn’t the same time commitment as a convention or clinic, and should be counted differently.
    6. The contest is still a Black Belt requirement for Shodan and Nidan, but a qualifying contest no longer needs to have three different schools participating to count.  There is no minimum number of school’s needed to count, it still needs to be on the AJJF Calendar.
    7. A multiple activity event can still only count as one activity.  Since we reduced the count per year to two, this isn’t a hard requirement to meet.
    8. The director of each activity must sign the Activity Sheet or Budo Pass.
  10. Request a Time-In-Grade Letter from the Examination Committee Chair.
  11. Successfully complete the AJJF Ethics and Risk Management Course and Examination (does not need to be repeated if done before.)
  12. Meet the standards of Ethics as set forth in the document Code of Conduct and Procedures for Conflict Resolution.
  13. Find out from Examinations Committee Chair or Regional Examination Coordinator:
    1. Should the candidate mail documents, or bring them to the exam?
    2. Does the candidate need to pre-register for the exam date?
    3. How much is the fee for examinations?
  14. Be able to demonstrate effectively all Shodan requirements, any variations as requested by the examiners, and Shinnin No Maki 1 through 36.* A candidate who received a Dojo Shodan rank before 1976 may apply for an AJJF Nidan exam. Any candidate who received a Dojo Shodan rank after 1976 must also have passed an AJJF Shodan examination to apply for an AJJF Nidan examination.

Further Information

  • “Examination for Blackbelt”
  • “Regulations, Policies, Procedures For Blackbelt Exams”


  • Application for Examination
  • Sensei Recommendation Letter
  • Examination Activity Record Sheet



  • Board of Professors
  • Examinations Committee Chair – regarding exam procedures, Time-In-Grade letter, and forms
  • Regional Manager or Regional Examination Coordinator – regarding dates, times, locations of exams.