A kickboxer from South Tyneside is paving the way for champions to follow in his footsteps after lifting a title belt in his dedicated sport.
Michael McTavy has become the first fighter from the Kuei-Ling Martial Arts Academy, in South Shields, to win a belt in the K1 style of the sport.
The style incorporates low kicks and knee strikes, along with the usual kickboxing techniques.
The 30-year-old, who has been training with the academy for almost three years, concentrated his efforts in the style for the past year.
Michael took the title at the Duel Grand Prix Kickboxing series at the Walker Activity Dome, in Newcastle.
He won by a split decision against more experienced opponent in Pete Hymers, fighting out of Millennium Martial Arts, in Blyth.
Kuei-Ling K1 coach Martin Stobbs stated “Michael’s win is testament to the dedication and commitment he puts into training, as he works away from home throughout the week.
“He applies himself even more during sessions in the gym at weekends when home.
“A real strength of Michael’s is his will to win and determination in the ring, wearing his opponents down with aggression and strength”.
“After being primarily a Full Contact kickboxing gym over the past 25 years, with many national and international champions, Michael is the first from the academy to win a K1 style kickboxing title after it was introduced at Kuei-Ling just over four years ago.”
Also representing Kuei-Ling at the event were Nicole Wood and Matty Carrick.
Kickboxing is a group of stand-up combat sports based on kicking and punching, historically developed from karate, muay Thai, kun Khmer, and boxing.
Kickboxing is practiced for self-defence, general fitness, or as a contact sport.
Kuei-Ling Martial Arts Academy is based at 40 Maxwell Street, South Shields.
For details, call 0794 6389945