KARATE KIDS: Members of the Whitsunday Kyokushin Karate team fresh from a successful tournament.
KARATE KIDS: Members of the Whitsunday Kyokushin Karate team fresh from a successful tournament. Peter Carruthers

Bringing home gold from Arnie Classic

MARTIAL ARTS: ARNOLD Schwarzenegger was in Australia last week and the crew from the Whitsunday Kyokushin Karate were 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 Arnold Classic Martial Arts Festival's full-contact 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. Especially coming from a small area," 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 until the age of 14 do wear body armour.

Sensei Belinda Woodham two children competed at the tournament and was happy to see them do well.

The Arnold Classic Kyokushin Karate Championship is a goodwill event dedicated to the Memory of Sosai Mas Oyama.

It is open to all Kyokushin Karate practitioners regardless of affiliation.

Arnie facts

 He was born as Arnold Alois Schwarzenegger in Thal, Austria on July 30, 1947

 His mother and father were police chiefs

 His father voluntarily joined Nazi Party in 1938 and served Germany in World War II.

 In the year 1967, Arnold won the Mr Universe title for the first time.


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