It is with great honour that I share the outstanding results of today’s black belt grade examination. We extend our heartfelt congratulations to David, Natasha, and Sian, esteemed members of our dojo, on achieving their well-deserved Shodan rank!
Before challenging the grading, each candidate demonstrated their knowledge by submitting an essay or delivering a presentation on a chosen topic related to karate. Then today, they arrived early in the morning for a panel interview, before getting warmed up...
The physical grading itself was an arduous four-hour test that encompassed a wide range of elements. From performing the fundamentals, combinations, and kata to executing pre-arranged exercises, flow drills, combative applications, self-defence techniques, pad-work, and fitness routines. The candidates also excelled in clinch work, ground fighting, surprise stress tests, various forms of sparring, as well as board breaking and much more!
Throughout the examination, each candidate demonstrated immense perseverance and a resolute mindset. They admirably adapted to every challenge thrown their way. These individuals have dedicated many years to training at our dojo, showing unwavering commitment, even when faced with their own individual pressures and not to mention the sight of equally capable members giving up along the way.
As chief instructor, I am immensely proud to be associated with these remarkable individuals. It is an incredible privilege to share my karate with them and feel humbled that they have entrusted me, along with our team of amazing instructors, to oversee their martial arts training. It has been gratifying for us all to witness their growth over the years and we offer our deepest respect.
I would also like to express my sincere gratitude to fellow panel members John, Lewis, Elaine, and Terry Sensei for their invaluable support and guidance throughout the day. Thanks also to black belt instructors Alison, Warren, and Shaun for their participation in and support of the candidates.
I look forward to seeing you all back in the dojo soon, as you continue forward in your karate journey!