Local 94-Year-Old Martial Artist Becomes Oldest Master Instructor

Most 94-year-olds don't spend their free time breaking boards with their hands and memorizing intricate punch and kick combinations. Dr. Harlan Van Over, however, is no ordinary 94-year-old. 

The sixth-degree black belt began practicing martial arts nearly four decades ago, and last week, he became the oldest Master Instructor, an honor only given to those who have earned at least a sixth degree black belt and have put in years of rigorous training. 

"I probably had fifty or sixty people take pictures with me after the ceremony," Dr. Van Over said of his experience in Little Rock, Arkansas last week. "It's not something you plan for, but it sort of comes along with it all. It's a big honor to feel that sense of gratitude."

Dr. Van Over hopes his story will be an inspiration to those across the globe to set and accomplish their own goals, even if they seem far-fetched. 

"I always remember, if you want to drink from a well, first you have to dig the hole," he said about his years of perseverance. "You have to pay a price, to persevere, to reach your goals."

So what's next for the young-hearted 94-year-old? 

"If I'm around long enough, maybe a seventh-degree black belt," Harlan said, smiling ear-to-ear. 

 

 


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