Last week we had a very special rank promotion ceremony at Lakes Martial Arts in Minneapolis: we awarded our very first black belt, another leadership team member earned a black uniform, and a stellar class of new intermediate students earned their sparring gear. All in all, over 40 students tested for a new rank, one of the largest ceremonies we've ever had since we opened in 2013!
Master Dave Niska joined us as a special guest. Master Niska started his martial arts training ATA in 1983. He is an extremely well-rounded martial arts, as has served as hand to hand combat instructor for the Marine Corps, he is a purple belt with the Gracie Jujitsu program, and I watched him earn his Mastership in 2013. He is one of the owners of Excel Lifeforce Martial Arts Training Center in Woodbury. Two interesting facts about Master Niska:
- Mike Moh (who plays Agent G & Ryu in Street Fighter: Assassin’s Fist) was a student of Master Niska.
- One of Master Niska’s favorite food: Cheesecake!
Mrs Jessica Reinhardt earned her black uniform as part of the Lakes Martial Arts Leadership team (note that red collar!).
Mr. Hogen-Chin earned his ATA 1st Degree Black Belt and shares his goals with the Lakes Martial Arts community.
- Attend at least one tournament in our region each year.
- Attend the Iowa Conference in February of next year
- Earn his second degree black belt within the next two years
- Compete at ATA World Championships
- Continue to be a part of the success of Lakes Martial Arts
We appreciate Mr. Hogen-Chin's continued leadership in Songahm Taekwondo!
And congratulations to all the students who tested for a new rank! Here is our class photo: