Breaking Boundaries: Pride and excitement from competing in taekwondo

When Mr Javier Koh stepped out onto the field of play at STF’s first Para Taekwondo Poomsae Championship, where he competed under P20 for intellectual impairment, he felt “excited and proud”.

His emotions could have come from the preparations his parents had helped him with – “we helped Javier prepare for the competition by practicing regularly, setting realistic goals and providing emotional support and encouragement every step of the way”, they said – or perhaps the feelings of strength and confidence taekwondo still inspires in him.

Whatever it was, he walked home with a gold medal.

According to Mr Koh’s parents, they had first chosen taekwondo as a sport for their son because it offered “a structured environment” and also helped him develop physical coordination, discipline and self-confidence.

“We worked closely with Javier’s instructors to modify exercises and techniques to accommodate his unique needs and abilities, ensuring he gets the most out of his training sessions,” they said.

Taekwondo quickly provided Mr Koh with more.

“Through taekwondo, Javier has improved his focus, self-discipline and social skills. He has also gained a sense of achievement and belonging within the taekwondo community,” Mr Koh’s parents said.

They also keep him encouraged with positive reinforcement and celebrating his progress and achievements.