After going through the coaching certification and exposed to the changes made to the rules guiding taekwondo worldwide, triple Olympian, Chika Chukwumerije believes Nigeria taekwondo community must align with the changes in the sport.
After obtaining World Taekwondo Federation/ Pan American Taekwondo Union Coach Permit at the end of the two-day coaching certification g course, which at the West Gate hotel, Las Vegas, USA, Chukwumerije confirmed that several changes have been made to the rules of taekwondo and it is important for coaches in the country to be acquainted with this development.
“I am grateful that I planned to be here a year ago. The new rules have really changed everything. The way a coach teaches his athlete must change if medals are to be won. Nigeria Taekwondo coaches will need to update their knowledge urgently if Tokyo 2020 is to be different. If an athlete that won the Rio 2016 fights that same way with these new rules, the athlete will most certainly lose to point deductions. Yes, the impact of these new rules and their application is that drastic.
The 2008 Beijing Olympic Games added: “Once I get back to Nigeria, I will certainly change the way I have been teaching my direct athletes, and perhaps will help organise a taekwondo education course. The more coaches that have this knowledge means more Nigeria taekwondo athletes can learn in enough time to make a difference at the 2019 All African Games and Tokyo 2020”
“Despite challenges encountering it, Nigeria Taekwondo needs to stay ahead. Our practitioners need to know what is happening. I was so shocked that very few coaches knew about the new requirement. Our ability to keep ahead really depends on keeping our ears on the global taekwondo ground and making sure we spread the info and knowledge within our circles,” the 2007 African Games gold medalist.
Over 200 coaches from 60 countries attended the course.
Meanwhile, the four Nigerians that will represent Nigeria at the 2017 US Taekwondo Opens will know their opponents on Tuesday January 31 when the draws hold while the weigh-in begins on February 1 while hostilities for the Nigerians will take place on February 2 to 3.
Team Nigeria will be led by Commonwealth Youth Gold Medallist, Isah Adamu Abubakar and former African Bronze Medallist, Usman Sulaiman, and they will be competing in the -58kg category. Current All African Games Silver Medallist, Edwin Samson will be competing in the -63kg category while former National player, Saturday Bashir will be competing in the -80kg category.