From another thread/response from Matakiant, made me think that I need to put this out to the rest of you and I briefly put my thoughts on the subject below so that others get the chance to respond plus give me the chance to add and respond to replies etc.
In my school the average transition from 3rd Brown Belt (3rd Red Belt) to Black Belt, well the Minimum is 12 months from the previous grading but it is on invitation, I feel that it should be a minimum of 2 years and that the transition is a mental not physical one as the train of thought for a Mudansha (Non Blackbelts) compared to a Yudansha (Black Belts) is completely different. You never need to tell a Yudansha you need to do this or that etc whereas a Mudansha needs direction/instruction all the time. What are other Martial Artists thoughts on what they did or how they feel about their students and what is the minimum and average transition time they have for them to prepare for Black Belt? And if you think full contact should begin at third brown how long is the average transition from that to black belt in your style.