Lympstone Dojo youngster becomes the club's first 'home grown' back belt

PUBLISHED: 13:50 23 July 2019 | UPDATED: 19:51 23 July 2019

Oliver being congratulated by Sensei Sherry and Poynton

Oliver being congratulated by Sensei Sherry and Poynton

Earlier this month, 12-year-old Oliver Roper of Lympstone Dojo travelled to Bath University to train and grade with the Karate Union of Great Britain (KUGB) chairman, Andy Sherry, 9th Dan and Bob Poynton, 8th Dan.

Oliver Roper with Sensei Andy Sherry and Sensei Bob PoyntonOliver Roper with Sensei Andy Sherry and Sensei Bob Poynton

The youngster completed an hour and half a rigorous training before undertaking his black belt grading examination.

His grading consisted of three essential areas, which were: 'Khion' (basic movements consisting of kicking and punching); 'Kata' (sequence of moves) and 'Kumite' (in two parts with semi free style announced attacks fighting and two minutes of free style unannounced fighting).

Oliver preformed all three criteria to an exceptionally high standard which ultimately earned him his shodan - 1st degree black belt.

The pass rate on the day only being about 70 per cent which underlines just how well young Oliver did at Bath!

Oliver Roper in his black beltOliver Roper in his black belt

Oliver has performed at exceptional standards since starting in August 2015. In each of his kyu (coloured belt) gradings, he earned an outstanding overall pass mark from Sensei Andy Sherry.

Oliver has also performed well in recent competitions, coming third in the children's novice kata at the South West Championships which was his first competition.

In 2017, he claimed first place in the children's novice kata and joint third in the children's Ippon (one step sparring).

In 2018 he was in the top eight for the KUGB National championships and also finished fourth in the children's brown and black belt kata at the South West championships.

In the 2018 Exmouth Cup, he claimed a number of awards and, earlier this year he came fifth at the

National and Southern region championships in children's novice to brown belt kata.

At the Exmouth Cup earlier this month he claimed first place in the children's brown and black belt kata, first in the team kata, third in the boy's kumite and fourth in the children's ippon kumite.

Oliver is Lympstone Dojo's first 'home grown' black belt and the club are all incredibly proud of him and can't wait to see what else he accomplishes in the future.

Lympstone Dojo teaches traditional shotokan karate at Lympstone Village hall on Tuesdays (from 6.30pm to 7.45pm and on Saturday mornings from 9.30am to 10.45am. There are currently spaces available on the Saturday morning sessions.

Please contact Marianne on 077291 84676 or by email at or and the club can also be found on their Facebook page - Lympstone Shotokan Karate.

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