Merit Awards fall outside the normal judo belt rankings or coaching awards. They are awarded by Sensei to students who have shown true Judo Spirit whether that is in the dojo or outside the dojo.
The 3 levels are marked by different coloured badges:
Blue merit – level 1
Red merit – level 2
Gold Merit – level 3 – only awarded in exceptional cases
Merit badges should be worn on the sleeve, where there is less risk of them being ripped off by a judoka taking a grip.