Students from Guelph Family Martial Arts returned from the Ontario Winter Games. An event that featured nearly 30 sports and the top athletes throughout the province. The event drew thousands of spectators and 3,500 athletes. The event was four days with athletes competing each day for the prestigious title.
The students had to qualify for the team by attending workshops that tested their martial arts skill, conditioning and teamwork ability among others. The workshops took place at the WAKO Headquarters, after the four workshops the four students were selected to be part of the National Team to compete at the Winter Games. WAKO is an organization recognized by the IOC (International Olympic Committee) and the Winter Games is organized by the government and ministry of sport. The athletes competed in kickboxing/sport karate.
Guelph Family Martial Arts also had Nathan and Sophie Skoufis selected as Winter Games coaches given their expertise and accomplishments in the sport and ability to inspire and motive students. Both have won numerous titles and are members of Team Canada.
• Oliver Hua-Gold Sparring
Xavier Pitman-Silver Sparring
Kadin Tran-Gold Sparring, Bronze Kata and Bronze Weapons
Cole Cardo Lindsay- Gold Kata and Gold Sparring
Nathan Skoufis said
“It was such an amazing event for everyone involved, everyone made new friends and had such great experiences that will last a lifetime. It is surreal to see kickboxing/sport karate included alongside other mainstream sports and really shows how far it has come as a sport. Sport has the ability to facilitate personal growth and development and is something that can be utilized as a vehicle for developing physical, emotional and spiritual strength. Martial arts is about way more than punching and kicking but is about become a well rounded person. This was an amazing opportunity to have my students that started with us years ago compete and do so well. They have made this community so proud. I know the work we put in preparing for this event and to see the success they had makes it so special. Competition teaches focus, discipline, self control and perseverance among so many other life skills. It offers an outlet that you can overcome fear, anxiety and uncertainty.”
Sophie Skoufis said
“The athletes at the games exemplified what being an athlete should be both on and off the court. I am so proud of them all. This event is an amazing opportunity for young athletes to grow and I really believe the next olympians will come from this event. We look forward to 2022 and the next Winter Games that will be in Mississauga and Toronto area.”
Congratulations to our community athletes, they will next be in action at the Canadian National Martial Arts Championships in Niagara Falls.
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