Law Academic Wins Gold Medal at International Karate ChampionshipsHealth Sciences

Gold medal winner Ms Suhayfa Bhamjee with her karate trainer Sensei Dan Naicker.Gold medal winner Ms Suhayfa Bhamjee with her karate trainer Sensei Dan Naicker.

Blue belt karateka and UKZN Law Lecturer Ms Suhavfa Bhamiee won a gold medal in the Individual Kata section at the recent Kimura Shukokai International KZN Karate Championships.

Being an academic, a wife and a mother as well as studying for her doctorate means Bhamiee’s life is very full to put it mildly.  Yet amid all of that she still finds time for karate, a sport she is passionate about.

The Karate championships attracted 79 competitors who competed in three categories: Kata (forms); Kumite (sparring); and Unison/Team Kata.

Bhamjee won gold in the Senior Ladies Kata while her team was awarded silver in the Team Kata section.

‘I entered the competition for the experience, never actually thinking I’d get a medal, let alone gold! I’m still buzzing from it all! The ladies in my division were awesome and very skilled karatekas, a testament to the Shukokai style where the focus is on precision and power,’ said Bhamjee.

‘I started the sport three years ago and now there’s no looking back. As a mum, wife, daughter and academic, karate was something completely out of my comfort zone but to be honest it has been a blast!’

The self-confessed nerd is training hard for her next karate grading in October while flat out with research for her thesis titled: “Death and Dying in a Constitutional Democracy- ASSISTED DYING”, which examines legal and ethical arguments in relation to euthanasia. Her work looks at global legislative trends in allowing people to decide the time and manner of their death.

‘I hope to get my purple belt at the next karate grading,’ said Bhamjee, who is preparing conference papers and submitting articles for peer review on the road to being awarded her doctorate.

Thandiwe Jumo