A 11-year-old from Maldon is now an English karate champion after winning gold in a Clacton competition.

Charlie Dalby, who is 11 years old, started karate aged four after showing an interest in the martial arts sport from a young age.

Charlie changed clubs, aged nine, to move to a place with competitive kickboxing and a few months ago, switched again to train with Kaizen Kai in Maldon.

After moving to Kaizen Kai, Charlie started training and preparing for competitions.

Clacton and Frinton Gazette: Winner - Charlie Dalby with his gold medal Winner - Charlie Dalby with his gold medal (Image: Submitted)

Last week, Charlie took part in an internal club kickboxing competition and won a gold medal.

Charlie also took part on the EUKF English Karate Open in Clacton on April 28 where he won a gold and silver medal.

Charlie beat 16 other competitors to win gold in the ‘Kata’ section, which means he is also now the English champion in the Kata section.

Dad Matt said: “The Kaizen Kai club at Maldon are a fantastic and very friendly club.

“They are based on Market Hill and they really do spend lots of time teaching and nurturing the kids that attend. They are fully invested in teaching the children not only the skills of karate and kickboxing, but they spend time talking about values, attitudes and life lessons.

Clacton and Frinton Gazette: Medals - Charlie Dalby with his various medalsMedals - Charlie Dalby with his various medals (Image: Submitted)

“The next steps for Charlie are to hopefully qualify for the English squad and to carry on competing in as many competitions as possible in order to gain more experience.

“He has another two competitions this month and one of them is the Southern England Karate Cup on May 19 in Clacton.”

Kaizen Kai – which translates as 'natural result' in England – opened its first full time martial arts centre in Hutton, Brentwood, in 2002 and has since opened more clubs, including three additional full-time martial arts centres in Maldon, Chelmsford and Harlow.

As well as traditional karate, Taekwondo and self-defence for juniors and adults of all abilities, the club also offers fitness and low impact fitness exercise classes.

To get involved in karate, kick-boxing or other activities, contact admin@kazenkai.com or call 01277 262 800.