The Okotoks International Film Festival is just around the corner with features and shorts coming in from all around the globe.

One film features an impressive martial artist with a black belt in Karate has a local connection.

Jill Roberts is the director of Sensei, a short documentary about Natalie Olson, the first Canadian with Down Syndrome to achieve her black belt.

The doc follows her as she prepares and trains through the COVID-19 pandemic with her Sensei and friend of 20 years, Heather Fidyk.

"So where the film picks up is, Sensei Natalie has achieved her black belt and is now an international competitor and on the world stage representing Canada and is training for her next challenge, which is getting her third-degree black belt."

The film also features two other subjects: Sensei Teresa Graup and her son Conrad. Both are based out of Turner Valley and Black Diamond.

"Conard also has Down Syndrome and when Sensei Teresa saw Sensei Natalie training one day and was so impressed by how good she is and what an amazing athlete she is. She got really excited. Natalie was doing her Katas and was just really inspired by her and then and so in turn was Conrad. 

"He says that she’s his hero."

At the time of filming Conrad had achieved his brown belt. Which is the belt before your black belt or your Shodan, your first degree. He's training for the same grading that Natalie is going for her third degree. 

sensi posterThe main subject in the doc is Natalie Olson with her Sensei, Heather Fidyk. (Supplied)

The documentary is the result of the Local Heroes Documentary Edition of Telus Storyhive, which awarded $20,000 to a number of projects in Alberta and British Columbia. 

It will be screened Sunday, June 5 at 9 a.m. as a part of the Breakfast Docs section of the Okotoks Film Festival.

Ticket information can be found on their website.