WHITEHOUSE — Ten students from Nuon’s Martial Arts Academy will be heading to Denton on Friday to compete in The AOK 2021 State Championship.
Gym owner Sam Nuon, who is a 6th degree black belt and has been studying martial arts for 35 years, said he was excited to be sending so many students.
“I am excited and super proud to have this many students competing in state,” he said. “I know these students put a lot of hard work in competing in tournaments to be able to qualify for state.”
Students ranging from ages 6 to 52 will take to the mat to compete in the tournament.
The AOK 2021 State Championship is an open tournament meaning several disciplines will compete including Karate, Kung Fu and Tae Kwon Do, among others.
According to Nuon, his students will be competing in katas, weapons, sparring and board-breaking.
Izzy Webb, who is 12 and in seventh grade at Hubbard Middle School, said she started martial arts 10 months ago and immediately fell in love with it.
“One of the things I like most about martial arts is performing my katas, which are forms,” she said.
Webb, an orange belt in Tae Kwon Do, said she likes the excitement of competing and always trying to get better.
“I like the excitement of competing and getting to go up against new competitors each time,” Webb said. “I feel like I am prepared enough to go to the state tournament again, but I could always be better. Every day that I train, I try to improve even more.”
Nuon says there is a lot to be learned from martial arts that go beyond the sport itself.
“I feel that martial arts is important because it builds confidence, character, respect and discipline,” he said. “Our program teaches courtesy, integrity, perseverance, self control and indomitable spirit.
“Our students are very dedicated and hard working and I am very proud of them,” he continued.
Students competing include Nathan Webb, Ashley and Izzy Webb, Ben Young, Alek Young, Brantley Shoemaker, Jackson Walker, Gwen Williams, Noah Martin and Anthony Griffin.
For more information, call Nuon’s Martial Arts at (903) 279-7313.