Theresa strongwoman in uniform

Over the past few years the Namibia Karate Union (NAKU) has been progressively building a reputation as one of the strongest upcoming countries with regards to karate in Africa.

Not only has the Namibian Karate Team and its athletes proved successful; the NAKU referees delegation lead by Namibian Chief Referee, Wikus Oberholtzer, has also received its fair share of success; with many Namibian Referees now holding numerous international level judging qualifications. One such individual in particular is Sensei Theresa Swart of the Swakopmund SKAI Dojo.
Theresa Swart started karate at the age of 30 in 2006 and since has been actively involved in Namibian karate. Asa passionate and active student, she achieved her Shodan (1st degree black belt) in 2013 and her Nidan (2nd degree black belt) in 2015. Most recently in 2018 she successfully graded for her Sandan (3rd degree black belt), earning her the official title of ‘Sensei’. Other than her role as an Instructor in the Swakopmund SKAI Dojo, Sensei Theresa has also dedicated much of her time and effort as both an organiser and senior official on many National and International level karate events, including this year’s AUSC Region 5 Karate Championships which were hosted in Namibia.
Sensei Theresa has been assisting as an official since 2006, before ultimately receiving her National Kata and Kumite Judge C qualifications in 2013. In 2016 she achieved National Kata and Kumite Judge B status before continuing on to Kata Judge A status the following year. In 2018 she became the first Namibian woman to obtain her Regional Kata and Kumite Referee Qualifications as well as the first female Namibian referee to represent her country at an AUSC Region 5 Karate Championship. The same year Sensei Theresa received her National Kata and Kumite Judge A qualifications, making her the most experienced female referee in the country.
Most recently, at this year’s 2019 African Karate Championships in Gaborone, Botswana; Sensei Theresa once again raised the bar by receiving her UFAK Kata Judge B status, making her the first Namibian woman in history to receive a continental level judge qualification for karate. The Namibia Karate Union is extremely proud of Sensei Theresa Swart and Gert Husselman receiving UFAK Kata Judge A and UFAK Kumite Judge B, we believe that they has set an example and that Sensei Theresa will motivate many more female athletes to embark on this incredibly re-warding journey.

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