Taekwondo District Championship Tournament kicks off martial arts season
By Jamie Green
Special to The Leader
Honor. Courtesy. Integrity. Perseverance. Self-Control. Courage. Community. Strength. Humility. Knowledge. These are the tenets of Tiger Rock Martial Arts Taekwondo. Every week students young and old recite these tenets as a gentle reminder of what and why they train. Bridge City Middle School played host to the Tiger Rock Martial Arts Taekwondo District Championship Tournament on Saturday, Nov. 7. There were 285 participants from all over the Golden Triangle, Houston, Atascocita, Kingwood, and Katy.
Martial Artists of all ages and rank competed against each other in categories such as board breaking, artistic expression forms, and sparring.
Representing the Orange Academy off of Lutcher Drive were Jeffery McClelland, Kearsten Temple, William Head, Haylee LeBouef, Cole Watson, and Zaiden Barron.
Jeffery McClelland, 17, is a level 1, 3rd degree Black Belt. He earned a bronze third place medal in Board Breaking.
Kearsten Temple, 19, is a level 4, 2nd degree Black Belt and earned a gold first place medal in Forms, silver second place medal in Board Breaking, and a bronze third place medal in Sparring.
Cole Watson, 11, is a level 1 Red Belt and earned a silver second place medal in Board Breaking.
William Head, 7, is a level 3 Green Belt and earned a gold first place medal in Board Breaking. Haylee LeBouef, 9, is a yellow belt and earned a gold first place medal in Board Breaking, silver second place medal in Forms, and a silver second place medal in noncontact, One Step Sparring.
Zaiden Barron, 7, is a yellow belt and earned a silver second place medal in noncontact, One Step Sparring, and a bronze third place medal in Board Breaking.
Supporting their students and assisting with judging were instructors Deena McClelland, Jeffery McClelland, Kearsten Temple, Glenda Carroll, and owner of the Beaumont, Vidor, and Orange academies, 7th Degree Black Belt Senior Master David Howells.
District Tournaments are just the kick off of the Tiger Rock Martial Arts season. All year competitors train vigorously to prepare for Nationals in hopes they will earn the opportunity to compete for the prestigious title of Masters Invitational Champion, an invitation only event at World Tournament being held in Baton Rouge July 2016.
When asked about why competition is such an important aspect of martial arts Senior Master Marv Conway said, “Competition is life. There are people outside competing for a place to park, people competing for a job, competing for their lives. It is important for people to learn to be humble in their victory and victorious in their defeat.”
Deena McClelland discussed the importance of tournament as a lesson in self-confidence saying, “It takes a lot of courage to go out and do your forms in front of complete strangers.”
According to the mission statement of the Tiger Rock Beaumont, Orange, and Vidor on the academy’ website www.tkdtexas.com, “The mission of Tiger-Rock is to empower students by enriching their personal, artistic, and professional lives through Tiger-Rock training. While providing students with the various benefits resulting from highly functional training, Tiger-Rock believes the highest purpose of our programs is to prepare students for the responsibilities of citizenship. Tiger-Rock programs are about real and powerful experiences, resulting in the discovery of innate capabilities and a heightened sense of responsibility.”
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