YOUNG Ryan Marsden has become one of the first in the country to achieve an orange belt in the martial art of CombatSombo.
The 11-year-old started training in kick-boxing at the age of five, under the instruction of Allan Clarkin’s Black Knights, and has competed for Great Britain in various competitions in England, Ireland, Italy and Germany, winning various medals.
He is also looking to grade to his Cadet blackbelt in kickboxing in December.
A couple of years ago, Ryan started to study Ju-Jitsu and has reached a grade of orange belt under the same instructor, before starting CombatSombo.
CombatSombo is a controlled and restrained variation of Sambo, an acronym of a number of Russian words, which means self defence without a weapon, combining techniques from a number of martial arts
It is now considered to be one of the four main forms of amateur wrestling along with Greco-Roman, freestyle and Judo.
Martin Clarke from the UK was the first to separate self defence from the sport and he called his system CombatSombo which he registered in the UK.
Ryan attended a summer camp in Kent, accompanied with Clarkin, and trained with some of the best instructors in the country, while taking part in various activities over a four-day period, training hard for eight hours a day.
Ryan made a big impression on the senior instructors through his fitness, attitude and determination, and this was shown on one of the evenings when a fight night was organised, and he was on and off the mat for 30 minutes fighting people who were not just older then him, but more experienced and heavier.
Following this, all the instructors were extremely impressed and he was graded by Clarke, a Grand Master in Sambo.
Ryan did himself justice in this and was awarded an orange belt grade, and he will now attend, with other members of Burnley CombatSombo Club, the 1st BCSA Submission Wrestling Championships later this month.
Anyone wanting information on the Burnley club can go to www.burnley-combatsombo.org.uk