Gold medals galore
Local karate crew floors its opponents
MARTIAL ARTS: Arnold Schwarzenegger was in Australia last week and the crew from Whitsunday Kyokushin Karate was there to meet the Hollywood legend.
The combined team from the Cannonvale and Proserpine dojos made the epic trip to Melbourne to compete in the Arnold Classic.
The full name of the competition is the Arnold Classic Martial Arts Festival’s fullcontact Kyokushin Karate competition, and it was held for the first time this year.
Former Australian Kyokushin karate champion, fifth dan black belt and now karate teacher Shihan Wayne Hinschen said he was proud of the team’s achievements.
“We won the crowd, we won a lot of people over,” he said.
Mr Hinschen said many teams competing at the tournament had the advantage of competing every week and for a small regional team to pick up so many medals was a huge achievement.
The team of 20 competitors brought home 21 placings for the skills demonstrated in the ring.
The tournament was held under traditional Kyokushin “knockdown” rules.
The bouts saw some of Australia’s toughest fighters do bare-knuckle battle with body punches, knees and thumping leg-kicks – though kids up to the age of 14 do wear body armour.
Sensei Belinda Woodham’s said she was very pround of all the students and happy to see them do well.
KARATE KIDS: Members of the Whitsunday Kyokushin Karate team fresh from a successful tournament. Photo: Peter Carruthers