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Making History: Karate and Autism

This guest post is from Ryan Rogers, a young adult on the autism spectrum. Ryan is certified Worldwide for karate through the Nihon Karate Do Kenwa Kai - Tennessee branch at Green's Karate. Ryan was just diagnosed with Aspergers earlier this year. In 2012, Ryan became the "first documented person in history with autism to win a medal (bronze) in kata in the 18 to 34 year old novice non-handicap division at the U.S Karate Nationals (" Ryan shared a little bit about himself with us below!

My passion for karate and my karate journey started when I was 14 years old and I wanted to find a karate school. In the summer of 2003, I found karate at the Hamilton Place YMCA. Three years later in 2006, I earned my black belt. In 2010, I earned my first degree black belt (one belt higher than black belt).

I’ve been very lucky to make history four times in karate as the only individual with autism to win several of these competitions. I also want to share four interesting things about myself with you.

  • I enjoy drawing and developing my characters and cartooning.
  • I like Sci Fi and movies like Prometheus, the Alien Trilogy, Transformers and Star Wars.
  • I am currently trying to deepen my knowledge and my faith by reading my bible everyday. 
  • I try to strengthen and push my body each day and I am a health nut.

In the future I hope to continue doing karate! 

You can read more about Ryan’s accomplishments here

The Autism Speaks blog features opinions from people throughout the autism community. Each blog represents the point of view of the author and does not necessarily reflect Autism Speaks' beliefs or point of view.