By Kaylin Park
When her parents first signed her up for taekwondo in May of 2010, freshman Sarah Aparicio had no idea how rewarding and enjoyable the classes would really be. After attending classes and gaining a newfound enthusiasm for the sport, her passion grew tremendously as she discovered her blossoming talent and skill in Korean martial arts. Besides practicing taekwondo, Sarah also represents the LCHS Equestrian team. Last year, she competed against over 200 other competitors, ultimately scoring victorious as the Freshman Dressage champion, and as the Freshman Reserve champion overall.
Sarah has been practicing taekwondo at JK Taekwondo in Glendale for nearly five years. She is currently a first degree black belt and will be testing for her second degree this coming December.
In addition to attending classes, Sarah is an avid participant in taekwondo competitions. However, due to her current focus on training for her second degree black belt, Sarah has not competed at all this year. Her most recent competition took place on October 11, 2015, where she placed first in both sparring and in poomsae, which are patterns of defense-and-attack motions.
Sarah appreciates the way the sport strengthens her, both physically and mentally.
“I feel that I have greater self confidence from studying taekwondo since I am able to protect myself more effectively,” she said.
She also shared that her favorite lessons were the ones in which she practiced with swords and perfecting poomsae.
“I enjoyed them because they both placed a strong emphasis on refining a person’s skills in precision and in balance,” Sarah stated.
Her words of advice for those who are just starting out and those who are interested in learning taekwondo consist of three important points.
“Remember to respectfully communicate and cooperate with the taekwondo masters, practice consistently, and most importantly, keep your head up. Stick it through-you will reach your goal before you know it.”
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LA CANADA, PROUD AND GRAND. ALMA MATER SHALL FOREVER STAND.