Local taekwondo students earn black beltsPublished 6:36pm Tuesday, July 24, 2012
Family Martial Arts, of Dowagiac, graduated three taekwondo students to black belt status for the first time.
The martial arts school, located on M-51 in the former Heartland Chrysler building, commended its first set of black belt graduates. Carson Ausra, 11, and Shaun Notten received their first-degree black belts while Adrian Leversen, 15, who received his black belt when he was 10, is currently completing final testing for his second-degree black belt.
A sport that requires dedication, focus and respect, Stafford said he was proud to see some of his students achieve the milestone.
“For 21 months, you work so hard to help them, you almost become like a family,” Stafford said. “It’s a very prideful thing.”
Stacy Leversen, treasurer for Dowagiac Union Schools, said her son, Adrian, began martial arts when he was only six.
“It feels great to see him achieve that,” Stacy said. “It’s a positive influence on other parts of his life … it’s discipline.”
Ausra, who has already begun training to achieve his second-degree black belt, said finally earning the belt eased his nerves.
“I was relieved,” he said Tuesday before class.
Stafford said that while the commitment to martial arts is necessary to succeed, students usually make a habit of focusing and succeeding in other areas of life, such as school.
“It helps in the classroom and builds self-confidence,” Stafford said. “I’ve seen C-students become straight-A students after becoming involved.”
Family Martial Arts is open for fall sign-ups. Stafford said there is no set age limit and that he determines at what age younger children can begin. Stafford also teaches adult classes.
For more information or to schedule an appointment, contact Stafford at (269) 240-3249.
Tags: Family Martial Arts