NewsCovering Colorado


Lakewood woman with muscular dystrophy breaks barriers by earning black belt

5280 Karate Academy Foundation is on a mission to make martial arts more accessible and affordable
Anita, martial arts master
Posted at 8:38 PM, Dec 05, 2022
and last updated 2022-12-05 22:38:55-05

LAKEWOOD, Colo. — Doctors said she would not live past 30 years old. Fast forward two decades, and Anita Liuzzi just turned 50 — and is now a karate master.

The Lakewood resident, who has a form of muscular dystrophy, just became the first person in a wheelchair to earn a blackbelt at 5280 Karate Academy Foundation.

The nonprofit has been around since 1998, and is on a mission to make martial arts more affordable and accessible.

"[I wanted] to show that, just because you're in a wheelchair, does not mean you can't go for a black belt," said Liuzzi, who will now teach classes at the school. "It just takes a lot of time to do."

In the video above, you can watch Anita earn her blackbelt, and also enjoy seeing her take me down with almost too much ease.

For more information on the school, you can head here.