Karate Woman Tells How To Pass A Black Belt Test

Tara Hanna, age 35, New Black Belt

Karate Woman Tara Hanna (still one of our karate kids) has a special message in this letter she wrote for You and the Instructors at Allen Sarac's Professional Karate Centers.

What makes this letter so special is that she didn't focus on her illness, the problems and the pain , but on how she is using her karate lessons in her fight against Multiple Sclerosis and a few things that YOU can do and learn to become a Black Belt.


I have been studying with Master Sarac for 16 years. Three years ago while I was a first degree brown belt, I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis, a debilitating illness. My doctor told me I would be fine to continue with karate. Many others told me to stop because I needed to rest. I decided to continue my karate and self-defense training.

In October of 2012, my physician’s assistant said that I was a walking miracle based on my MRI results. I attribute much of my symptom control to my karate training.

I have been trained to never give up and keep fighting! I don’t plan on making an exception for Multiple Sclerosis (MS). I believe that attitude is a big part of my continued success in defying this illness.

Karate has given me the confidence to stand up to anything.

I also believe that staying active and not allowing myself to become sedentary has also been a huge part of my fight against MS.

I had been focused on a goal other than setting my mind on this illness and that was to get my black belt. On January 15, 2013, after completing sparring and 5 weapon katas, I earned my black belt. The black belt test is the most difficult and rewarding test I’ve ever taken in my life. It was worth every hour I spent. Somewhere along the way through all of this, I decided I’d rather be an example than a victim.

The instructors at Professional Karate Centers are amazing. They have all been incredibly supportive and empathetic towards my condition but never fail to challenge me and push me to do my best beyond what I ever thought I could do without MS. A huge shout out to Master Sarac and Mr. Gordon who taught my very first class as a white belt, you are inspirations.

What's Next for this Karate Woman?

This April, I plan to march in the MS marathon wearing my black belt. Thank you to all of the instructors who helped prepare me for the fight of my life. I promise I will do the belt proud!


Note from George (webmaster):

That was Tara's message in its entirety. I hope that you agree with me that this karate woman is an amazing new black belt. The art of karate can help overcome obstacles in our lives when we apply our martial arts lessons to that part which we need help the most.  Here is what Tara's message showed us.... and what she demonstrated:

  • focus
  • perseverance
  • attitude
  • confidence
  • staying active
  • example not a victim, personal responsibility

I highlighted those examples in her letter above. Re-read it again, its real lessons, used in a real life situation. Here is a case where this karate woman - the karate student - just became our teacher.


Multiple sclerosis is thought to be a chronic autoimmune disease that attacks the central nervous system (CNS) — the brain, spinal cord, and nerve fibers to the eyes.

If you would like to learn more about Multiple Sclerosis, donate or join a fundraising event visit this website for information: Multiple Sclerosis Society

If you would like to try a FREE Week of Karate Lessons to see how the program at Professional Karate Centers can help you: CLICK HERE


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