Graves karate students compete in Bucksport; earn trophies

9 years ago

BUCKSPORT, Maine — Martial arts students from regional branches of Graves’ Institute of Self Defense recently traveled south to compete in a tournament recently.
Along with the normal sparring and Ju-Jitsu divisions, this Bucksport event featured grand championship fighting open only to competitors who had won a first-, second- or third-place award at a previous 2014 event. Only one huge three-foot trophy was awarded to the winner of each championship division as a best-of-the-best incentive.
Fighting and Ju-jitsu sections were determined by age, weight, gender and belt color, which connotes experience levels from novice white belts to intermediate green belts to advanced brown belt levels. Black belts have their own men and women’s divisions — open for those 17-34 years of age, senior for 35-45 year olds; and executive for those 45 and older. Over 150 trophies were presented to the top three finishers in 52 point sparring and throwing groups.

Only 21 of the tall grand championship trophies were handed out during the day and seven of these coveted awards came back to Aroostook County. Oddly, three of the seven elite winners were white belts attending only their second tournament. In all a total of 43 trophies traveled back north in the hands of 34 students from seven Graves’ dojos.
A handful of skilled, local Ketsugo practitioners enjoyed the good fortune of winning two trophies during the day-long competition. Also there were nine family combos that brought home awards, a set of brothers, two sister pairs, two brother/sister sets as well as father/daughter, father/son and mother/daughter winning duos. On top of that, every one of the seven Aroostook and one New Brunswick Graves’ branch schools that attended the tournament brought home some trophies.
For more information and photos regarding this recent event and local participants as well as general info on classes, check out the Graves’ Institute of Self Defense Facebook page. Area classes are open to interested youngsters and adults from age 5 and up promoting exercise, confidence building and self defense.