Two Farlington girls are now black belts in martial arts.
Natasha Pennington in Year 8 has gained her Black Belt after a two-hour grading session which included running through patterns, speed drills, one-on-one attacking and defending, and full power techniques. Natasha practices Choi Kwang Do, an off-shoot of Tae Kwon Do, and has been practising martial arts since she was four.
Meg Savage in Year 7 started SAMA Karate when she was five and was awarded her 1st Dan Black Belt in 2012 when she was 10. She has now started training in kickboxing in addition to her Karate.
Sara Whittaker, Director of PE and Games, says, ‘Martial arts is a great sport teaching the girls confidence and discipline, as well as the practical aspects of self-defence. Gaining a black belt takes tremendous dedication and hard work. We are immensely proud of both Natasha and Meg.’
In addition, this term, the Upper Sixth had two weeks of self-defence lessons from black belt Tai Chi experts. They were taught how to get out of typical situations and how to defend themselves by blocking punches. Rebecca Arnold, Deputy Head Girl, says ‘We all got very involved and thoroughly enjoyed letting out our more violent sides, even if it was sometimes in a controlled and lady-like way! Self -defence is something that will definitely help us if we ever get into trouble and I’m sure none of us will forget some of the gory moves we have learnt for injuring others. Potential attackers, be afraid!’
Report and pictures contributed by Farlington.