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Sandwell Tae Kwon Do now have ten Black Belt members!

Candidates were recently successful in being promoted with the prestigious tae kwon do degree grades after a painstaking 3 hour examination.

Lorna Waring tested for second degree black belt promotion and performed well showcasing her sparring skills which she has fine tuned in many tournaments over the years and her accurate techniques in patterns Kwang Gae, Poe Eun and Gae Baek. She was joined in the grading by sisters Emilie and Gracie Bedenham,sisters Shristi and Sadhya Kharal, Isiah Saunders, Alana Acampora, Gillis Robbie and the oldest member of the team Peter Seddon. All students have been awarded their first degree black belts after testing in theory, destruction, patterns, set sparring and sparring categories.

The team join Stacey Cockbill who was promoted previously to first degree black belt and is now training to sit her second degree examination. This makes a perfect team of ten members in the higher ranking level of the club.

Many see black belt as the coveted prize of martial arts training. It has taken our members 3 and a half years of extensive training twice a week to earn their grade, and for second dan promotion Miss Waring trained for 6 years.

Black belt is not the end of the journey but the start of a new journey for the team who all have new goals to achieve by learning more advanced traditional forms and competing across the country in 2020. Gillis Robbie was awarded fighter of the year for his many successes in 2019 and Alana Acampora gave a superb performance in her examination which saw her awarded Black Belt of the Year 2019 as she displayed maturity in class helping younger members but also demonstrates great accuracy in her stances and techniques.

The group also had a 100% pass rate in the coloured belt grading. One of the younger

members of the group Mia Gregory was awarded student of the year 2019 for her fantastic patterns performances and sparring. Maya Boratynska was awarded the indomitable spirit award which was presented for not giving up despite her becoming very anxious prior to the grading. Maya gave a very technically on point performance and thoroughly deserved the recognition.

As part of their Martial Arts Excellence Programme, Sandwell Tae Kwon Do Black Belts have all pledged to get involved with the local community to raise awareness of the benefits of martial arts training and inspire the younger generation.

The team are all now in training for their first ever Open competition which will be held on the 1st March 2020 in Dudley at Saracen's Martial Arts. Instructor Claire Southall commented; 'We have had a fantastic end to 2019 with the black belt promotions and now with the competition looming the team are trai

ning harder than ever .It is the first time our tae kwon do squad will come up against kung fu and kickboxing fighters. The Midlands Open is open to all styles and it promises to be a very good day as we have alot of local talent! Anyone interested in competing can apply now. I hope my black belts will inspire more people to join in.'

Everyone is capable of achieving a black belt it just takes a lot of hard work, perseverance and dedication. To see more details of tae kwon do classes in Sandwell and Dudley visit

Contact 07402743284 for more details.

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