We had a great turnout for our last brown and black belt course of the year. Over 100 students and Instructors turned up to train with their fellow advanced students and both courses were very enjoyable.
The black belts covered the JKS Shodan to Nidan combinations and spent the remainder of the lesson breaking down and working to improve Kata Kanku-Dai. The Black Belts then did a kumite exercise to finish off a great course.
The brown belts to 1st Kyu’s were split into groups and concentrated on 1st Kyu to Shodan combinations, Katas Tekki Shodan and Bassia-Dai, tube training and the course finished off with Junro Shodan.
It was a special event for three students in particular who experienced a very disappointing Dan grading in July.
Jackie Hall and Isabelle Wilkie were asked to retake their Kata section of the grading and Phoebe McNally was asked to retake the kumite section of the grading.
All three re-attempted their grade at the Brown Belt Course in front of all of their peers and a load of parents and we delighted to report that all three passed. They are now Shodans.
Jackie Hall from the Helmshore class was extremely disappointed to have not passed at the first attempt and since then has done everything possible to improve her katas. She has asked her Instructors for extra help and been doing 45 minutes extra training at each class to make sure that she would meet the required standard at the next opportunity. We are so happy that Jackie has passed and improved so considerably over the last three months. She is a great role model at the Helmshore class, tries really hard at every class and has been a committed and loyal member for over 4 years. Well done Jackie, welcome to the Black Belt Club.
Phoebe McNally had a very bittersweet day back in July when her Dad Andy successful graded and she came so close. Since then she has picked herself back up and worked on what she was asked to. Phoebe has shown determination and maturity in the way she has behaved since experiencing that disappointment and we applaud her for that. She’s a talented girl and understands that when you have such talent and ability, more is expected of you and we are delighted that she is beginning to fulfill her massive potential. Her kumite was much improved, she was more fiocused and all of her counters landed accurately. Her attacks were much stronger and harder for her opponents to deal with. Well done Phoebe, you were brilliant and can relax a bit more now, knowing that you’ve caught up Dad!
Isabelle Wilkie was hugely disappointed at not completing her grading in July. However, Izzy has had to become an extraordinarily resilient young girl. Life has been so cruel to Izzy and she has experienced something nobody should in their childhood years. Those know know Vicky and Izzy personally will be completely inspired by their strength, bravery and dignity in the face of adversity. Becoming a Black Belt means the World to Izzy and we are so pleased that she chose to continue training hard and improving to become the best that she can be. She has remained patient and was just waiting for her next opportunity to shine. She has clearly been working hard with her Instructors Paul W Sensei, Dave Sensei, Debbie Sensei and Rob Sensei and impressed everyone on the day with her strong Katas. We are immensely proud of all of the people who reach Black Belt at Red Tiger. All have their own personal battles to face and journey to make. However, this one is a very special for all of us. Well done Isabelle Wilkie, you are a Black Belt and a true karate ka in every sense. What an inspiration.