Here at Cedar Ridge Academy International Private Therapeutic Boarding School, I can easily say that karate is the one thing I enjoy the most. I have loved karate since the first day I started doing it. Many people may not think karate has a therapeutic element to it, but it truly does. There have been multiple days when I have gone into karate class feeling very negative. Every time that has happened, I have pulled myself out of that mood by putting 110 percent of my effort into karate. I cannot speak for anyone but myself when I say this, however, I believe that other students would say the same. Being someone who does not have much confidence, karate class is one place where I have never felt judged or self-conscious. I am my most confident when it comes to karate and I feel strong while doing it. As Cedar Ridge is a therapeutic boarding school, we have quite a rigorous curriculum which has caused karate to dwindle down to a once-a-week ritual, unless, of course, you happen to be in Rob’s after school karate small group. That group meets every Tuesday and Thursday and it consists of both boys and girls. We work on a variety of things and we train hard to improve our skills.
Three of our white belt students practicing a palm heel strike
The parents of many students have asked that their children be put in the karate small group to give them a more therapeutic grip on the overall practice. Something that Rob strongly enforces is respect to the dojo which is, for the most part, implemented. Being a high belt in karate is an honor to whoever holds that position and is also something one must deserve. I have been here for a little over six months and I just recently tested up for my green belt, which comes directly before brown and black (the highest ranking belt). Since I am currently on level 500, I am unable to wear my green belt because that rank shows responsibility and other characteristics I am still working towards. Once I get trust level 600, I will be able to sport my green belt and continue to work for my next kyu, or rank. Karate is also a huge motivation for me to work my program and to continue working on my self-esteem. When I first learned what Cedar Ridge was and I decided to attend, I knew karate was involved, but by no means did I ever think I would be as drawn to it as I am now. I never dreamed I would have a goal of obtaining my black belt in karate, let alone while attending a private international boarding school in Utah.