Current track



Country Star Willie Nelson 81, Earns 5th Degree Black Belt

Written by on April 30, 2014

Willie Nelson

This just goes to show you that no matter what age, you can still kick a little ass…

You may know him as a country music star but you may not know he’s been practicing Korean martial arts for 20 years.


Willie Nelson is always on our minds, but especially this week, because he’s celebrating his 81st birthday. And also because on Monday, the legendary singer received his fifth-degree black belt in GongKwon Yusul, a martial art which he’s been practicing for 20 years.

“It’s just good for you physically. For your lungs. The more you’re breathing, exercising, the better you’re going to feel,” Nelson told Austin’s KVUE.

Shortly before the ceremony, the singer told the Associated Press that he was surprised to be receiving the degree at all. “I don’t know what else is out there,” he said. “I never thought about anything beyond second-degree black belt.”

Though Nelson is best known for his music (and for his prolific pot habit), it’s a bit lesser known that he’s very into martial arts too.

“I think martial arts is one of the best exercises you can do. Mentally, spiritually, physically, everything,” he told the AP