By Moses Nyirenda:
One of the Karate schools in the country, Karate Zen Malawi is set to host a karate championship slated for November 7, 2021 at College of Medicine Sports Complex in Blantyre.
In an interview with Malawi News Agency (Mana) on Tuesday, Coordinator for the championship, Sensei (Instructor) Joseph Kawerama said that the tournament has been organized with an aim of promoting karate sport in the country.
“Karate has been practiced in the country for long time but not much has been done to nurture talent or to expose those that have the hunger and ability to present what Karate is all about.
“The country has potential but we let it fade so this time around we want Karate to wave high the Malawian flag. We want Malawi to be a part of the Karate games within the SADC region and all around the world,” Kawerama said.
He added that the karate athletes whose karate styles are registered under World Karate Federation (KWF) are those eligible for the championship and these include; Shotokan, Guju Ryu, Shito Ryu and Wadu Ryu karate.
He also said that, the tournament is open to all qualified karate practitioners starting from the age of six upwards.
During the competition, he said the competitors will be in group according to their age, gender as well as belt ranking and these athletes will compete in Kata (demonstration of basics) and kumite (freestyle fighting).
He however said participants are asked to pay a participation fee of K8, 000 for those that would like to participate in one activity such as Kata only or Kumite only and K10, 000 for those who would like to participate in both categories.
In his remarks, Lilongwe based Shotokan Karate Instructor Sensei Andrew Mwampita commended Karate Zen Malawi for organizing the karate championship.
“Karate championship games are much important because they help karatekas (karate athletes) train hard and improve their skills, thereby improving our karate standards as a country to the highest levels.
“Hence I am commending the organizers of the forthcoming karate championship and I also believe that through the championship, we karatekas will be able to create a national karate team that would put Malawi on international map,” Mwampita said.
He also said that, the championship will also help the public to understand the true meaning of karate saying that most of the people think that karate is for unruly behaviors.
“Karate is a Japanese martial art which has 5 pillars and these are; seek perfection of the character, be faithful, endeavor to excel, respect others and refrain from violent behavior and these pillars make karate athletes to be disciplined.
“However, many people think that karate is about violence and robbery, therefore the championship will also help people to understand the true meaning of karate based on its pillars,” he said.