Earlier this summer, L5 student Leah took part in the National AMA Championships. This is a national Karate competition, and it was one which held huge personal significance for Leah as it marked the one year milestone of her taking part in competitions.
The championships consisted of two days of fierce competition; with Leah competing on both days, determined to give it her all. The first of the two days saw Leah compete in Musical Kata. Leah performed to an exceptional standard and wowed the judges, to see her finish in joint first place. Unfortunately, Leah was just edged out in the tie brake round, but this should take nothing away from the superb level of performance she produced throughout. The second half of the day saw Leah take part in her individual. Going into the event full of confidence, an unfortunate rule change meant that the Kata that Leah had prepared was not valid, meaning she was unfortunately disqualified from this event.
It takes a strong character to be able to get back up after a setback, but Leah was determined not to give up, and she prepared herself for the second day’s events. Day two of the championships focused on Fighting; an event which Leah admits is not her favourite. However, a motivated Leah entered boldly and gave the competition her all; she was delighted to place first and leave with the gold medal! An outstanding achievement which is testament to the hard work, determination and level of performance that Leah showcased.
To top her success off, the weekend ended with her Head Coach praising her for how she dealt with her setback and also for her stellar performances, rewarding her with selection for the European Championships! These championships will take place in Malta, and we look forward to supporting Leah throughout.
To go along with the fantastic achievements of the weekend, Leah also confesses to learning some valuable lessons. “I learnt two valuable lessons (during the competition). Firstly, I learnt that you should always prepare, and never assume that you are right. If I had done this I wouldn’t have been disqualified (on the first day). Secondly, I learnt that no matter how low you feel you should never give up”. Very inspiring words that will stand Leah in good stead as she continues her Martial Arts, and strives forward in life in general.