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Kirsten Bonar

Sport: Karate

Kirsten Bonar

Aged just five, Kirsten began attending Holytown Karate Club where her father Charles Lindsay was the lead 7th Dan instructor. Years later she would go on to reach the pinnacle of her sport.

Like her father, Kirsten proved to be a natural. She quickly advanced through the junior grades, gaining her 1st Dan black belt at the age of 16, when she also began coaching at the club.

She continued to progress through the Dan grades and, in 2008, became one of only a few Scottish female karatekas to be awarded the prestigious rank of 5th Dan.

Over the years she has been capped for her country many times, competing for the Scotland Karate Federation's (SKF) squad as well as winning many Scottish titles and taking part in European events.

At the age of 21 she moved into officiating, progressing through association and then national level qualifications to establish herself as a top-level referee.

Unfortunately at this point, Kirsten suffered a devastating knee injury while training. This would put her refereeing career on hold for two years.

However, she continued to show that fighting spirit, grit, determination and never-give-up attitude that sport imbues...

In 2013, she embarked on an intensive study period, combined with rigorous theory and practical examinations. The following year she gained her European B Judge licence at the European Karate Federation Championships in Turkey.

This broke new ground as she became the first Scottish female to become a European qualified karate official.

By the end of 2014, Kirsten was appointed to the Scottish Karate Governing Body's 'Referee Commission', to help develop top-flight Scottish judges and referees and in May 2015, she was appointed as 'Director of Refereeing' by the Scottish Karate Governing Body (SKGB) Board of Directors.

Kirsten is planning to attend the European Championships in Serbia in May 2018 to ratify her refereeing qualification at that level and then on to Denmark in February 2019 to sit her final exams to upgrade to the full European referee standard.

Together with her husband Grant Bonar (6th Dan) and her dad they run Wado Kai Karate Central, based within Holytown Community Centre, with several club members being selected for the SKF team competing internationally.

The family legacy continues as her nine year old son Reece has already won a Scottish title for his age group and her niece Rebekah has been selected for the Scotland team for the World Wado Championships.