INVERKEITHING Taekwon-Do Club enjoyed a black belt bonanza with four students achieving top grades - after sweating through seven hours of work!

A panel of high-ranking examiners put 12-year-olds Ryan McCluskey and Lisa O'Neill, Christopher Ostrom (15) and Susan Dundas (34) to the test. The quartet achieved their black belts but were put through a gruelling day.

First of all the students undertook an intense three-hour technical seminar with Master David Brown (7th Degree), covering patterns, including practical application of techniques, self-defence, technical kicking and sparring.

After a short break, the grading proved even more intense than the seminar. It lasted nearly four hours and included all belt patterns, one-step sparring, free-sparring, two-on-one sparring, self-defence, theory test (including a thesis submission), power test, technical kicking, four-directional kicking and techniques, and a fitness/spirit test.

Their instructor, Darren Scott (4th Degree black belt), said, "I think it's safe to say everyone was tested mentally and physically during the gruelling day - however, the reward justified the effort as they found out they had successfully passed their 1st Degree tests.

"They have all attained an exceptional level of skill and ability and after so many years of training, they thoroughly deserve their black belts." The Inverkeithing club, which has just celebrated its 20th year, meets on Tuesdays and Thursdays at Inverkeithing High School at 6pm each night.

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