Focus Taekwondo end of year awards

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British Taekwondo Dan Grading

Focus Taekwondo awards given to students at their Xmas party. Adult Student of the year, Child Student of the year, Male Beginner of the Year, Female beginner of the year, Most improved student of the year, Little Kickers of the year, Advanced fighter of the year, Novice fighter of the year, Most improved fighter of the year and Inspiration of the year.

Every year Focus Taekwondo instructors give out awards to students that have excelled in different areas of Taekwondo. This is always a tough decision for coaches as all year round students give 100% and all deserve some recognition! The awards this year in order of the evening:

Adult Student of the year: Karen Hill, Karen is one of the most consistent students hardly ever missing a session and even trains at the Brooksbank venue with Stephen. Karen started training last April when Focus first opened and has just gained her 2nd Kup (Red Belt), not only this but Karen has taken part in competitions and regularly attends the fight training session as well as the patterns session. As well as training hard herself she also takes it upon herself to help the children. Karen has a big year ahead training for her black tag and then Black belt at the end of the year, and hopefully giving patterns competition a go.

Child Student of the year: Lewis Cocker, Lewis has only just turned 10 years old and has the kicking ability of many experienced adult black belts! He can do kicks thats that a lot of people never achieve! Lewis trains hard and has just achieved his 1st Kup (Black tag), as well as training for his black belt lewis is also a regular member of sparring competitions competing around once a month! Lewis will often ask if he can help out in the little kickers class or the beginner Taekwondo class. Lewis will be working hard over the next few months to gain his 1st Dan (Black belt) and then start training for the British National Championships in November.

Most improved student of the year: Thomas Hill, Thomas has been training with Chris on and off for a very long time but since permanently training with Chris from last April the improvements Tom has made are incredible! Tom was on the verge of giving up Taekwondo after not enjoying it and never grading for his next belts. After working hard he has found his enjoyment again and gained his next 2 belts now making him a 1st Kup (Black tag). Tom has also started sparring competitions more frequently and has already won a match! Tom like Lewis will be training hard for his Black belt in the next few months and will also be looking to try his first open competition.

Male Beginner student of the year: Corey Brown, Corey is one of our younger Taekwondo students and when he first came to join he had only just turned 6, Chris was debating on putting him in the children program (Little Kickers). After trying him in Taekwondo he soon showed that he more than belonged and has taken to it really well! His kicks for his age are brilliant and has a brilliant work ethic, when passing his Yellow Belt in September Corey was struggling to pick up pattern 1, after been explained that it is a difficult pattern to get straight away and a lot of children miss the next grading Corey was determined! Corey trained hard and even started practicing at home, soon enough he picked up Pattern 1 and graded for his Green tag in December! Corey is still determined and now wants to grade for his Green Belt and also wants to start sparring classes!

Female Beginner of the year: Jasmine Jones, Jasmine is one of the most polite and well behaved children Chris has met, she is always the first person to respond to instruction and never disruptive! As well as her excellent etiquette Jasmine has shown some brilliant Teakwondo from white belt she grasped the spinning kicks straight away and has now started to show a lot more power and flexibility in her kicks! Jasmine has great potential in what ever aspect of Taekwondo she decides to do.

Little Kicker of the year: Jacob Wells, Jacob is one of the original Little Kickers and is one of 3 Kickers on their Brown Stripe (1 belt away from Black stripe) Jacob has always been really flexible with kicks and has always been really consistent. However he has recently started getting a lot of power in his kicks and has really improved his weaker leg! Jacob like some of the other Little Kickers has a big year they will be the first group of Kickers to gain their Black stripe and complete the Little Kickers program and graduate into the full Taekwondo.

Advanced Fighter of the year: Byron Smith, Byron has won a fighter of the year award for the second year in a row! Last year he improved massively starting to finally win fights and become very competitive in his group. Having such a good year can sometimes be difficult to follow up, well Byron absolutely smashed it this year again been even more consistent, gaining himself as the number 1 seed in his weigh group for the British National Championships where he went onto win a Bronze medal! No easy task in his weight group, he was unfortunate not to make it to the final as he has previously beaten his opponent, but thats the way it goes sometimes. The biggest achievement has to be getting selected through the first stage of the Junior Fighting chance program for GB, Byron traveled down to Manchester to the Olympic Teakwood centre where he had to have a competitive match with someone else, Byron won the match with ease not conceding 1 point! Byron could have an even better year next year if he wants to continue this amazing run! He has another year left in Juniors which would make him one of the harder people to beat, another chance at becoming British Champion and the opportunity to fight abroad!

Novice fighter of the year: Natasha Wilkinson, Natasha has made herself one of the strongest Novice competitors in her category, Natasha won a Silver medal in last years British national Championships but unfortunately badly fractured her foot and re dislocated her ankle in the process meaning she had to have a lengthy period of time out which meant she could not train to her full. Never the less Natasha went into this years National Championships with injuries and having to have the most fights out of everyone in her group! she again secured a Silver medal winning 2 matches very convincingly! Natasha is still driven towards becoming British National Champion and will be training harder than ever!

Most improved fighter of the year: Mason Kelly, Mason had a tough start to the year moving into cadets (the older age group) this making him one of the youngest competitors in his division! For his first Cadet match he was faced with the very best from that group and GBR cadet member, from that moment on Mason stated working harder than ever training in Liverpool, Huddersfield, Doncaster and Manchester for different variety of sparring, he also started 1 on 1 training with his coach Chris. Mason finally got his first win in the cadet devison and has become a lot harder to beat, Mason has fought some of the very best this year more recently another GBR player from London who has won medals abroad. Mason give a good match and again stood his ground! Now the first year of Cadets is out of the way Chris has no doubts that a good year is ahead for Mason, he is one of the hardest working kids he has every met and with hard work always comes results!

The final award went to Terri Lumb, receiving the Inspiration award. Terri is the clubs elite and most experienced fighter, Terri has represented England in the Commonwealth Championships and until injury was the British Champion! Last year Terri went unbeaten in England, coming into this year she entered into the Dutch Open, Belgium Open and German Open all of which are Olympic ranking events and most athletes are full time professional athletes. Terri works full time and trains around her working and family life and she still managed to get to the last 16in these tournaments and beat National Team fighters, gaining herself a career best ranking of 165th in the World! Terri unfortunately had to have knee reconstruction as she ruptured her ACL! She is hoping to be back training July/August and then fighting around September!


Brooks bank members also received Awards from head coach Stephen!

Student of the year:

Niamh Fitzgibbon, Niamh is extremely hard working, fearless and isn’t afraid to get stuck in with the bigger/older students. Niamh is making a lot of good improvement within the technical and sparring aspects of Taekwondo.

Oliver Ambler, Oliver has trained consistently since he began training and has always given 100%. In November all this hard work and dedication paid off when he received his Black Belt! A great example for any of the younger students.

Lyndon Ambler, over the past year Lyndon has really upped his training and has been really constant with the sight of Black Belt! Again Like Oliver all this dedication paid off where he received his Black Belt 1st Dan! Since gaining his Black Belt Lyndon is actively helping the younger grades passing on his knowledge and experience.

Most improved student of the year:

Raymond Hanks, Raymond seems to have really come out of his shell this year and is also showing a lot more control with the other students when applying the different techniques specially with the smaller students. Raymond has also improved technically and has achieved many different grades this year! As well as making good progress in the technical classes Raymond has also been active in the competitions most recently taking part in the Yorkshire 1-2-1 match day in Bradford! He faced someone much more experienced and had to use the electronically scoring system for the first time!

Stephen says ‘Brooksbank has had another great year gaining 8 new Black belts and 2 new 2nd Dan Black belts and students have been more active in trying the competitions’.

Chris says ‘It has been difficult deciding on the awards as everyone generally try so hard and deserves some form of recognition! We have made so very good progress this year which will all lead to a very successful year in 2018, we will have our first batch of Little Kickers moving up, our first batch of students going for their black belts and the competition fight team is growing massively! With all this we will have a new full time venue to make all this History!’

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