Martial artists celebrate win at national championships

Chipping Sodbury Tang Soo Do club.
Chipping Sodbury Tang Soo Do club.

A martial arts team is celebrating after its members won gold, silver and bronze trophies at a national competition.

Several students from Chipping Sodbury Tang Soo Do club in Bristol took part in the World Tang Soo Do Association (WTSDA) National Championship in Nottingham.

The members, who also train at Brentry Tang Soo Do, returned with medals for patterns and sparring in junior and adult categories.

And several students have also been promoted to higher ranks after successfully grading.

Chipping Sodbury Tang Soo Do club.
Chipping Sodbury Tang Soo Do club.

Perseverance

Instructor Master Tim Butcher, 50, a 5th Dan who started training at the age of seven when his neighbour brought him along to a class, said: “I’m proud of our members and their dedication.

“While it’s lovely to win medals and earn a promotion, it’s more important to follow the tenets of the art. This includes integrity and perseverance – which they have shown.”

Mr Butcher first competed in the World Championships at the age of 16, teaching at 17 and retired from competitions as a World Champion.

He holds classes across Bristol, including at Southmead Community Association on Mondays and at the School Sports Centre in Bowling Road on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Brentry Tang Soo Do club.
Brentry Tang Soo Do club.

Family-friendly

Becky Sheppard who won a world title in Tang Soo Do
Becky Sheppard who won a world title in Tang Soo Do.

World Champion student Becky Sheppard said: “Master Butcher is a very strong fighter so he’s great to train with and to practice sparring. He’s always willing to get hands-on and involved in sparring.

“The club is massively family orientated and a very supportive group, with everyone working to help each other improve.”

Becky Sheppard
Becky Sheppard who upped her martial arts training during Covid in the Korean-based Tang Soo Do art which is one of the oldest systems, promoting self-defence, physical and spiritual health as well as personal development.

Mr Butcher, a self-employed painter and decorator, said several siblings and children and parents training together.

He said: “It’s a fun activity to do together and many families have spoken about how it’s strengthened their bond.”

Self-defence and health

Chipping Sodbury Tang Soo Do club.
Chipping Sodbury Tang Soo Do club.

Tang Soo Do is one of the oldest martial arts systems and promotes self-defence, physical and spiritual health and all-round personal development.

Martial arts film star Chuck Norris is a student of the art and displayed his prowess in films such as the classic 1970s film The Way of the Dragon with Bruce Lee.

Tang Soo Do is the same style taught by Kreese’s captain in Vietnam in the Cobra Kai series, a sequel to the 1980s Karate Kid films.

Students of Tang Soo Do have credited it with developing focus, clarity, greater flexibility and strength.

About Angela Belassie 71 Articles
Angela Belassie runs PR The Write Way to help small to medium sized organisations get coverage and raise their profile.