CRESTVIEW — Warriors Hall set the stage May 31 for Gordon Martial Arts’ spring promotional ceremony, during which roughly 70 students — some 4 years old; others in their 50s — demonstrated their taekwondo or Hapkido skills.
The group enjoyed pizza and mingled after the ceremony, which punctuated previous days’ testing events.
May 25 kicked things off, as Heidi Anderson, Pierce Thompson and Matthew Wilkinson tested successfully for their black belts.
Students ages 4 and up and adult Hapkido students tested in various events May 27 and 28.
Taekwondo students in groups of six to eight paired off to demonstrate self-defense movements against common strikes and grabs. They answered questions about taekwondo history and curriculum specifics, and explained the tenets of courtesy, integrity, perseverance, self-control and indomitable spirit.
Intermediate-level taekwondo students did the same; in addition, they wore padded safety gear and sparred with other students, demonstrating a higher level of proficiency as they’ve progressed through the belt system.
In addition to sparring, advanced-level students broke boards to demonstrate their power.
Each Hapkido tester collaborated with a student of similar size and ability to demonstrate joint locks, takedowns and throws.
Barbara Wimberley demonstrated wristlocks, shoulder locks, arm bars, leg reaps and overhead throws.
“Seeing a woman bounce around a man more than twice her weight is always a crowd pleaser,” Thomas Gordon, the school’s owner and instructor, said.