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Taekwondo kicks it at RMC
Taekwondo kicks it at RMC
By Wes Brown
Western's taekwondo club took their aggression out on the road last weekend to compete in the university open taekwondo tournament held at Royal Military College.
This is the first time the Western club has taken part in the all-university competition and was represented by 10 of its members. Teams from RMC, Queen's University and the university's of Ottawa, Toronto and Montréal were in attendance.
The tournament consisted of two events, one known as sparring and the other as poomse or patterns. Out of the Mustang participants, nine medaled in the two events.
"Patterns is a sequence of moves, speed and power judged against an imaginary opponent. Sparring is fighting against another opponent using kicks or punches to score points against the other opponent," explained Western's assistant coach and competitor Eric Ho.
Western faired well in all of the competitions in which they participated and Ho mentioned a few key performances. "Asad Aslam did really well in red belt, placing first in patterns and second in sparring. David Sykes and Shawn Rozario placed first and second in sparring [respectively] at green belt," he said. "We were there as a team, but it was an individual effort."
Rozario said he was also pleased with the weekend's turnout, especially since these Mustangs were still fairly young. He pointed to their inexperience as a major obstacle at the tournament.
"We did excellent considering we were first time competitors. It was a good experience," he said. "As you get more experience, you get more composure."
Rozario also noted the team's success this weekend was due to Ho and an inspirational talk he gave them before the tournament began, which helped lift the team's spirit.
"Eric gave us a little pep talk and that gave us a little more confidence. There was an intimidation factor because [we were competing with] RMC. That pep talk really helped," he said.
RMC head coach Pete Nicol, whose team was made up primarily of future officers of the Canadian military, pointed out their hard work throughout the entire season culminated in what was a good tournament.
"[We] train a lot and I knew everyone was ready for it. Overall RMC did really well it was our last competition of the year," he said. "Everyone enjoyed this one, it's one of the more fun tournaments of the year."
As for Ho, he placed first in sparring and second in poomse at the black belt level. He said taekwondo has the potential resources to go big at the university level, especially this year with help from the Olympic Games.
"Taekwondo is receiving full medal standing at this year's upcoming Olympics, so that will spark interest all over the place."