Student earns black belt at age 6

Student earns black belt at age 6
Two years ago, Carter Rasmussen, began his journey in the Korean martial art of Songahm Taekwondo. Now, at age 6, he has become the youngest student in the 20-year history of the Vermillion Black Belt Academy to achieve the rank of first degree black belt.

Beginning at age 4, Carter began moving through the nine belt ranks that precede a black belt. Each belt achieved is truly an accomplishment worthy of respect, reflecting a student's proven level of competence and proficiency.

Achieving a new belt isn't just a matter of spending enough time in a previous belt. In order to achieve their next rank, a student must demonstrate their abilities in their current belts techniques to include basic moves, sparring, and forms.

Carter's instructor, Mr. Trefz, fifth degree black belt, could see early on that Carter had exceptional drive and motivation to succeed. He explains, "Right from the start, Carter seemed to understand the benefits of listening intently, being courteous to others and working hard."

He adds, "It's not often that you get a student that possess the self determination and mental aptitude to climb the ranks at such a fast pace, while still developing themselves physically and mentally. This is especially unusual for someone so young."

Trefz feels that children who have acquired the rank of black belt also acquire an awareness of their environment and the actions of others around them. Students start to understand that actions have consequences and begin to determine how important it is to make good choices.

For a black belt, the goal is that the "right choice" becomes more and more automatic. "Carter has certainly been an example of a child with a black belt attitude," says Trefz.

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