Local Martial Arts Students Win 19 Medals at Edmonton Tournament – StrathmoreNow.com

The Oku Damashi martial arts dojo is starting its summer strong despite recent setbacks due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Despite a lack of healthy competition from other dojos for an entire year and the difficulties faced due to restrictions and closures, that hasn’t stopped these local athletes from taking Edmonton by storm in the WKC (The World Karate & Kickboxing Commission) Western Provincial Karate Trials for the Alberta team.

Owner-operator Tammy Thankachen explains why the Dojo decided to join this tournament

“It’s a release and it really helps them put energy into something productive and efficient. It was really difficult for everyone, but we’re open again. It’s just on all their faces , their excitement, their enthusiasm for the happiness of being back. It seems like they’re just more willing and more excited to invest more because it’s something they thrive on.

This recent success earned them a spot at the Team Canada Karate Trials May 20-22 in Ottawa. If successful, students from this small town dojo will represent all of Canada at the WKC World Championships in Dublin, Ireland.

Thankachen can’t help praising his hard-working students: “The group we formed, we had seven children and they were between 9 and 17 years old. Everyone really brought a very effective skill set and I was so proud of them. It was our first experience since COVID at a tournament. So for them to really get out of their comfort zone and work hard is really brilliant.

In addition to success in Edmonton, Thankachen students have also won bronze and gold medals at the Muay Thai Youth Games.

Time will tell if the students of his dojos will be propelled onto the world stage, but in the meantime, Thankachen will certainly continue to sing the praises of his talented students.

Kristen T. Prall