On Sunday 24th June we held a black belt grading for twelve students who were attempting the grade of Shodan-Ho, Shodan or Nidan grades.
Due to the dedication and hard training here at Musuko Karate Academy we had another 100% pass rate! Yes - there were some areas where there can still be improvement in students, but generally the standard was very high!
Many thanks to those who gave up their day to assist – Sensie Julie Dudley, Sensei Gavin Oliphant, Sensei Martin Thomas plus our special guest instructor who kindly agreed to sit on the grading panel. I know from your comments that you were all very impressed by the overall standard and I couldn’t do days like grading’s without your brilliant support.
Thank you to all the parents and families who supported on the day, and who drive their children around to the karate classes, grading’s and events all year round, your ongoing support and commitment to the club is fantastic!
I must also mention the people who kindly gave up their day to assist with the grading and jumped in line to partner and support those grading. Sensei Jack Churchouse, Sensei Kirsty Churchouse, Junior Instructors Nathan Crowther and Alfie Appleby, Sempai Karen Jackson and Christian Schofield and Junior Sempai's Ben Churchouse and Lucy Hulme. Thank you to each and every one of you. Your commitment to the club does not go unnoticed.
We are sure the whole club will join us in Congratulating the students individually named below along with their new ranks.
To get to these grades in Karate takes many, many years of dedication and it takes a very special student to go all the way to black belt and then continue beyond that with their training. Some students simply hang up their belts when they achieve it, thinking that is the end result but this action is an awful waste.
We sincerely hope that the students listed below will continue with their training for many years to come as their karate journey truly only begins at black belt level….
Paul Webber – Shodan-Ho
Sensei Paul has continuously trained at the Fleetwood dojo’s since a white belt and tries his hardest in every class and every challenge he is given. He is a great example to the other adult male students in the club and enjoys his role of Sensei immensely. He is becoming a great teacher and his confidence within classes is growing. He is a fantastic student to have in the club and along with partner Sensei Julie Dudley, supports every event we hold. Paul has always been consistent with his training and this has really helped his karate to improve at every grade he has achieved along the way. Paul worked really hard at the grading, he put effort into all the basics and tried his best at everything. His combinations were generally performed to a good standard, his kata’s were lovely and clean and had been practiced well and his basics were done with confidence and assertiveness. Paul’s kumite is his stronger point and he is now also starting to show much more control and respect in kumite rather than just throwing kicks and punches around, he was really pushed in this section but remained calm and composed throughout and showed great character in his karate. Congratulations Paul, you thoroughly deserved your Shodan-Ho grade. Well done!
Freya Hulme -Shodan-Ho
Freya is one of our brilliant young female students in the club and a real little pocket rocket. Freya is only ten years of age and has made great progress in her karate as she has steadily come through her grades. Freya is consistent with her training, and her focus and effort in class is improving all the time and this along with her belief in herself is helping her karate tenfold. She is a real little character in the dojo and can often make everyone laugh with her comments and facial expressions. She is also a popular member in class and has made some great karate friends. At the grading Freya was brilliant from the start, her basic overall karate was sharp and clean and her kata’s were practiced and flowed well. She had brilliant kicks and her general basics were very good. Freya also handled the kumite section amazingly well for someone so young. She dug in, unfazed by any of her sparring partners, and showed kumite of great speed and control. Congratulations Freya a brilliant effort all day and fully deserving of your Shodan-Ho!
Lauren Welsh – Shodan-Ho
Lauren is one of our super talented young females who has been training with Sensei Simon from a white belt. Lauren has always had strong karate in all areas, and the sky really is the limit for this young lady. She has had numerous successes in tournaments and is a member of our Elite Kata Squad. Lauren is an absolute delight to have in the dojo, she tries her hardest in every class and absorbs everything shown to her like a sponge! Lauren was brilliant at her grading her combinations were very sharp and brilliantly executed, her kata’s are done with real confidence and are very clean and all her basics are of someone more advanced than Lauren’s current grade. Lauren was also fantastic in the kumite section, she held her nerve and just got on with what she had to do, showing everyone around some brilliant kicks and controlled punches. Lauren has lots of friends within the club and is a great role model to have in the dojo. A lot of the younger female members look up to her and she is a fantastic Junior Sempai and takes her role seriously. Congratulations Lauren on your Shodan-Ho. Keep up the fab work!
Jack Southern – Shodan-Ho
Jack is a very dedicated student and started karate at the Fleetwood dojo’s at a very young age. He has trained consistently ever since and this is a real testament to his determination and drive to succeed. Jack is still only ten years of age and a real little pocket rocket. For someone so young he has remained focused throughout all his gradings and really made brilliant progress. He is an absolute pleasure to have in the dojo, is a popular member in class and has made some great friends. All the years of training for Jack came down to his grading day and it all paid off. After a nervous start he got his head together and then was not fazed in any areas and just got on with the job in hand. Jack has good all round karate, his basics are quite strong and his combinations were completed well. Jack’s kata’s were of a good standard, nice and clean and he was confident when performing them which was great to see. In the kumite section Jack handled all aspects brilliantly – every section was very admirable to watch and he worked tirelessly all afternoon showing why he really deserved his Shodan-Ho grade. Very well done Jack, Congratulations!
Jacob Greaves – Shodan
Jacob is a lovely and quite shy young man in the dojo who has been training at the Fleetwood dojo’s from a white belt. He has always tried his hardest in classes and is a real pleasure to have in the dojo. Jacob enjoys teaching and helping others in the dojo and this is really good to see. On the grading day Jacob was extremely focused from the start, his basics and stances were good, and his kata’s were well practiced and clean. In the kumite section Jacob did really well and showed a greater maturity with his understanding of control and distance, and when pushed Jacob took it all in his stride and stayed very composed throughout. Jacob’s karate will improve even more I’m sure as he continues to make great strides in classes. Congratulations Jacob on your Shodan achievement. Keep up the great work!
Harvey Atkinson – Shodan
Harvey is a polite and thoughtful young man who has been training with Sensei Simon from a white belt. He has always had good consistency in his training, and tries his hardest in every class. He has taken his role as Junior Sempai with a flourish and really enjoys teaching others and is a fantastic example to the younger kids in the club. Harvey’s karate is really coming along, he has significantly improved in all areas since his Shodan-Ho grade and his kata and kumite are of equal strengths. At the grading Harvey gave it his all from the very start, his basics and combinations were all good and his kata’s were controlled and practiced well, he showed some lovely hip work and he went through all sections of the grading efficiently and with real confidence. Harvey’s kumite was also very good with controlled movement and skill. He handled the whole day really well and it showed that he has listened and put into practice what he has been taught in classes. Well done Harvey and Congratulations on your Shodan – a very deserving grade!
Daisy Oliphant - Shodan
Daisy is one of our fantastic young female students and another real little pocket rocket! Daisy has again been training with Sensei Simon from a white belt and is a very devoted student and along with her dad Sensei Gavin supports every event we do. Daisy is a popular student in the club and has made lots of karate friends, she is super talented, and I don’t think she realises how good she really is! She is an absolute delight to have in classes and always trains well. Daisy was brilliant at her grading she had good basics in all areas of her karate, her combinations were done to a really good standard and her kata’s were very tidy and precise and you could see that they had been practiced well. Her kumite was very controlled and although Daisy got extremely tired she didn’t give up and continued to push through to the very end. Daisy gets very apprehensive and nervous before grading’s but she comes through strong once the gradings begin and this is a real testament to her sheer drive and determination and I am so proud of Daisy for this. Congratulations on achieving your Shodan Daisy – a fantastic achievement!
Yvonne Crowther- Shodan
Club Manager and Sensei Yvonne has worked tirelessly through her grades. Rarely missing classes she has been a steady student who also tries her hardest in the dojo. In between running the club admin and her teaching role on Friday’s at the Chorley class she is rarely out of a gi these days – but she enjoys the logistic challenge (or so I’m told). Karate hasn’t always come naturally but she has kept moving forward - never giving in, and this has encouraged other female adults to take up karate, and to challenge themselves. Yvonne did really well on her grading day, completing all sections cleanly and holding her focus and nerve all afternoon– not easy in front of Sensei Simon! Her combinations were clean and her kata’s had been practiced well. During the kumite section on a very warm day, she held her focus well and didn’t allow anything to faze her and handled the whole grading much better than her Shodan-Ho grade. Two on one sessions with Sensei Kirsty and Sensei Julie really pushed her but she remained calm and in control throughout and kept going right through until the end. Congratulations Yvonne, very well done on your Shodan grade. Brilliant work!
Mike Jordan – Shodan
Mike is one of our adult students who has been training with Sensei Simon since a white belt. He is an absolute inspiration to all adult students as considering his age (I know he won’t mind me saying that) he is so determined and focused and really wanted to attain his Shodan grade no matter what! Mike is very consistent with his training and despite a tough year in some ways he is never defeated and always upbeat. On the grading day Mike showed that he has significantly improved since his Shodan-Ho and he was brilliant all afternoon, he worked tirelessly through every section and it was very admirable to watch. His basics and combinations were all done to the best of his ability, and his kata’s were well practiced and done with confidence. In the kumite section he was unfazed and handled each opponent and situation very well. When pushed in kumite he stayed controlled throughout and handled everything with real composure. A very well deserved Shodan grade Mike. Congratulations, you should be really proud of what you have achieved. What a fantastic achievement!
Martin Wilmot - Nidan
Martin is another of our male adults in the club, and really enjoys his karate. He has trained with Sensei Simon from a white belt and has always been a consistent and focused student within his training. Martin is a brilliant student to have in the dojo and supports everything we do, he is a popular member in classes and is a great asset to the club. Martin always tries his hardest when challenged and has good karate in all areas which really showed at the grading. His basics and combinations were to a generally good standard and he performed his kata’s well. Martin was pushed hard in the kumite section but showed control and distance and handled this section much better than when he attempted his Shodan grade. Martin had constantly attended Senior class leading up to his grading and this definitely paid off for him on the day. Martin is now a Sensei in his own right and runs successful classes in Blackpool on Tuesday and Friday evenings with a significant number of students who all have a good standard. This is a testament to Martin’s keen interest in karate and his own personal development moving forward. Brilliant work Sensei Martin. Congratulations on your Nidan grade and keep up the fantastic work you are doing!
Brandon Crowther - Nidan
Brandon at thirteen years of age is one of our youngest members to attain the grade of Nidan. Brandon has trained in karate from the age of four as a white belt and has trained around four to five times a week ever since! He is part of our Elite Kata Squad and has had numerous successes in tournaments, he has also recently been chosen to represent England in the EKF Youth Kata Squad which is an amazing opportunity. Brandon is very determined in his training to succeed in everything he does, and always trains with 100% effort and focus. Brandon has strong karate in all areas, his basics are very good and he has really good combinations. His kata’s are very well practiced with outstanding stances and he has some beautiful kicks. Brandon could have more Kimae in his karate but this is something to work towards in the future as he is still quite young. Brandon also has good kumite with control but needs to aim for more power as he gets older. If Brandon continues to train like he currently is - and with the same drive and detemination, he has a fantastic karate future ahead of him. Congratulations Brandon on your Nidan grade. Keep up the fab work!
Danni Williams – Nidan
Danni joined us from another club around eighteen months ago and has become one of the clubs best young females and is a fantastic student to have. She is a lovely polite young lady and an absolute pleasure to teach. She has formed a close bond with Brandon Crowther and they are constantly seen working together in classes. Danni’s karate continues to go from strength to strength, she is a member of our Elite Kata Squad and has had numerous successes in tournaments, she too has also recently been selected for the EKF England Youth squad and will compete for her country - an amazing achievement. She is another of our students who supports everything we do and she absolutley loves her karate and trains four or five times a week. Her drive to succeed is very admirable and she always trains with 100% effort and focus. On the grading day Danni was brilliant from start to finish, she has really good basics and her combinations were generally of a good standard. Danni’s kata’s were extremely good and she showed her true ability brilliantly, executing them with real kimae and control. Danni also has really strong kumite, she has good kicks and punches and she stays in control and never loses her temper when pushed showing real grit and determination. The future is very bright for Danni, I'm sure she will have a fantastic karate future ahead of her and that she will continure to have many more great successes moving forwards. Congratulations on your Nidan grade Danni a fantastic achievement and one you should be really proud of!