HARD-hitting youngsters from South Tyneside have come back from a national event with 10 champions.
A squad from The Dokan Club, which is based in Boldon, travelled to Sheffield recently to compete in the English Kyu Grade Championships and returned with a total of 13 gold medals, 10 silver and 14 bronze in individual and team competitions.
The event marks a flying start to the year for the club – and they need it having set the bar so high last year.
In 2014 club members won a staggering 527 medals in a range of competitions this year – 122 of them gold.
This included 13 world champions, eight international competition wins and 12 national championships.
The Kyu grade championships are for youngsters who have yet to achieve their black belt
Chief instructor Kevan Mitchinson said he was more than happy with the latest medal haul
He said: “Our squad is doing exceptionally well considering we have around just 150 members. Coming second in the medal table, only one gold behind the winners, was an exceptional achievement.
“For six or seven of our squad it is their last Kyu grade championships as by next year they will be black belts, and I was delighted with my new low grades who entered and showed true potential some of whom won multiple medals.
“I was proud of the attitude, etiquette and bravery of all our students and they all performed at their very best throughout the day.
“They all work very hard in training and they are reaping the rewards.”
He added: “Last year was a tremendous year for the club. We got 48 medals, 13 of them gold, at the English National Championships. We finished fourth in the medal table and that’s not bad for a relatively small club.”
That was followed by a trip to Kosovo for the WSKU World Championships and, again, they came back laden with gold medals.
Mr Mitchinson added: “As well as the skill and dedication, the etiquette and overall behaviour of Dokan’s kids is becoming well known and we endeavour to maintain this reputation.
The Dokan club has more than 150 youngsters training in Boldon, Whitburn and Sunderland.
It is opening a new training group at Whitburn Parish hall on Mondays from 5pm until 6pm which is aimed at newcomers and youngsters.
It starts on Monday.
For details about the club and training times, call Mr Mitchinson on 0793 913 0411, or go to www.dokan.co.uk