The Karate World Federation (KWF) on Sunday hosted a belt-grading exercise for karate students in Lilongwe.
The function drew top senseis and students from renowned karate dogs (schools) in the country, including KWF Malawi Chapter president Frank Mvalo and Barry de Jager, head of international security company, Pro-elligent.
In an interview on the sidelines of the event, Mvalo said grading is done after students have shown dedication to training after passing examinations.
He said students progress from novice through the coloured Kyu grades (ninth to first Kyu) to black belt (first Dan).
“Learning Karate is unlimited and first Dan Black Belt is only the first in a series of black belt grades. The purpose of karate is to develop well-balanced mind and body, through training in fighting techniques,” he said.
“The ultimate aim of karate is to cultivate great human character of a higher class that prevents any violent attack before an actual fight occurs.”
De Jager appealed to karate students in the country to embrace the values of karate.
“In karate, respect is the foundation of what we teach. Another value is courage, which allows students to overcome challenges, reach for their goals and become successful in whatever they do,” he said.
“Karate is also about discipline and self defence and not aggressive behaviour,” said de Jager, whose company has opened a karate school at its headquarters in Lilongwe.
He said Malawi is at par with other karate schools in the world going by the demonstrations at the event.
“The expertise of sensei in this country is on the same level with other countries. It means what they teach here is what is taught in other countries,” de Jager said
The revelation of the grading was 11 years-old Bambino Private Schools learner, Mafunanse Kuwali.
She demonstrated rare karate skills that earned her not only respect from sensei but also fellow students.
“I was inspired by my father who practises at home. I love it and will work to earn a black belt before I reach 20 years old,” Kuwali said. n