Kuk Sool Won master leads martial arts classes at Cleveland Heights Community Center

Robert Carson, martial arts instructor at Cleveland Heights Community Center

Robert Carson, martial arts instructor at the Cleveland Heights Community Center and director of NEON Health Services, was promoted to master level, fifth degree black belt at the 2010 World Kuk Sool Association Tournament and Master Demonstration in Houston, Texas.

Seven of Carson’s students also attended and earned first degree black belts: Tony Calabro and daughter Sydney; David Pritts and daughter Ava and son Will Pritts; Caroline Koepke; and Nate Wilson. Carson and his students all live in Cleveland Heights.

“Earning a first degree black belt from the World Kuk Sool Association takes four to five years of practice; becoming a master requires at least 25 years of training in the art,” said David Pritts. “There are fewer than 100 masters in the world right now,” he added, estimating that there are 1 million students practicing the art.

Kuk Sool Won is “a systematic study of all of the traditional fighting arts, which together make up the martial arts history of Korea. Kuk Sool Won seeks to integrate and explore the entire spectrum of established Asian fighting arts, body conditioning techniques, mental development and traditional weapons training,” as described at www.kuksoolwon.com.

Carson’s newly promoted students will assist his other Kuk Sool Won instructors at the Cleveland Heights Community Center: second degree black belt candidates Dennis Kless of Cleveland Heights, Gerald Kramer of Cleveland and Dee Marsky of Shaker Heights.

“Learning Kuk Sool Won has enhanced the confidence of both my daughter and son. It has changed my family’s whole outlook,” said Pritts. “Without Kuk Sool Won, I definitely would not be where I am either, having lost over 30 pounds since joining the World Kuk Sool Association. I want other people to recognize the benefits of practicing Kuk Sool Won. We concentrate on improving inside and out, in every single way. That’s what martial arts did for my family.”

The next Kuk Sool Won classes at the Cleveland Heights Community Center begin Feb. 15. Classes are scheduled on Tuesdays and Thursdays beginning at 6 p.m. for the five- to six-year-old Little Tigers class, 6:30 p.m. for the Youth class, and 7:30 p.m. for the Adult and Advanced Youth class. Register at the Community Center located at Monticello and Mayfield roads or by phone at 216-691-7373.

Caroline Koepke is a Cleveland Heights resident and a volunteer at the Cleveland Heights Community Center.

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Volume 4, Issue 2, Posted 3:04 PM, 01.18.2011