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Returning from a pre-state Taekwondo championship held in Hermosillo in mid-November, Puerto Peñasco Taekwondo instructor Ramón Velázquez Monge proudly reports his students brought home numerous gold and silver level medals.
Valázquez, who has been involved in Taekwondo for over 40 years and 26 as an instructor, founded the city’s first Taekwondo studio and continues to train champions at the state and global level. For example, at the recent pre-state champsionship, Everardo Parra López (17) was selected for the state Taekwondo tournament.
The apparently soft-spoken Velázquez instills discipline in his students so they can confront challenges and shine in competition. Over the years, Velázquez Monge has had the opportunity to take outstanding students to tournaments in Argentina, Australia, and South Korea, as well as global and PanAmerican competitions. Furthermore, he is constantly seeking ongoing training both in Mexico and the U.S.
“Taekwondo offers discipline,” explains the long-time instructor, “it channels energy to help in controlling one’s quality of life, and if someone is timid it helps with their security.”
An interesting point Ramón shares is the growing number of girls enrolled in martial arts, and their increased competitiveness.
“Sometimes,” he details, “there are classes with more girls than boys. This shows us Taekwondo is not solely for boys; most of our champions are girls, they are more competitive than boys.”
Also, curiously, Velázquez commented that Mexico is a global power in sports such as boxing or Taekwondo, which are individual sports, as opposed to team sports. This, he reflects, has to do with Mexican idiosyncrasies.
The founder of Puerto Peñasco’s first federated Taekwondo school, Velmoon’s Taekwondo Escuela de Artes Marciales Coreanas located in Col. Centro, makes assurances the sport has been well accepted and, in some ways, is supported by government offices, because it is a sport that has always shown to have good results and Mexico tends to always place in the medals.
Photos courtesy of: Ramon Velázquez Monge