It's just around the corner and boy are we excited about the upcoming AAU National Championships to be held in two weeks in Fort Lauderdale, FL. Our competitive team has been honing their skills all season in preparation for this huge event that will host the top athletes from the nation.
It's a chance for our team to really spread their wings and test their skill against athletes from other regions that they have never faced before and it's so much fun! The AAU nationals is the crowning event that finishes out the competitive season for our team and it's sure to bring it's own set of challenges and hilights.
We interviewed some of the athletes on our team about their experiences this year and asked how they felt they have improved this season.
Justin B, age 9 (Pictured above) said that after he earned his 4th kyu belt (green belt with black stripe) he feels he has learned so much about the sai. "It's all because my sensei's took the time with me to learn Kobudo. I also worked very hard on kicks and stances in kata."
Isabella M, (pictured above with some of her medals from this season) is a black belt competitor this year. Isabella did very well in her divisions. She has been dedicated to training and feels that she has gained strength and focus this season.
We're so proud to know that the students at Ingram's are striving toward their goals. Competition provides a unique platform for traditional karate practitioners to enhance their skills and develop a deep sense and understanding of balance, timing, strategy, precision, and mental toughness.
We participate in the Amateur Athletic Union's Karate competitive events because it provides a professional and comprehensive tournament style that fosters the love of tradition with the respect and humility that is so highly valued in traditional karate.
Although competition isn't mandatory at our dojos, we have found that the students seeking to dive deeper into their training are searching for the type of competitive edge that tournaments provide; when coupled with the extended training these athletes receive during their season we have seen students make huge strides in skill and strength due to their involvement with our karate team.
The participation in these events also opens the door to international competition. Shown below, Sensei Egon, who participated this month in Slovakia to represent the US team, won the bronze in his kata (forms) division.
Athletes who compete at the upcoming AAU National Championships will have the chance to qualify for next years international team based on their rankings in this year's Kata (forms), Kumite (sparring), and Kobudo (weapons) divisions.
There are so many great benefits to taking your training to the next level and deciding to join our competitive team. As we begin to wind down our season, keep in mind that the fall will bring new opportunities to join, so if you've ever been interested in participating in karate tournaments, be sure to speak to your senseis about getting involved.