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World Championship Silver
Medal holder returns home
by Cameron Outridge

Landsborough mother of two Sylvia Jensen has just returned from the 13th ITF Taekwon-Do World Championships in Poland, with a silver medal. In her first World Championship, Sylvia came second in Women’s Power Breaking at the June titles in Warsaw. It was a tough contest with more than 400 of the world’s best participating in the event. Power Breaking requires competitors to smash through two plastic boards. “We use plastic because timber gets too expensive,’’ said Sylvia. “They are the equivalent of about two inches of timber each,” she said. Sylvia said timing was paramount to a clean break. “It is supposedly technique more than anything. Everything has to work together ... hands, feet, eyes and breath. “I’m having a bit of a rest now, then I’ll start preparing for the next World Championships in Germany in two years.’’ Sylvia said she was initially drawn to Taekwon-Do by the physical aspects of the sport.

“I started off with a different club doing boxercise. Then the self defence aspect bit me and I trained with the same club for two years. Then unfortunately my instructor passed away and I had to look around for another club. I found Rocky and Trisha and I’ve been with them ever since. “I love the physical side of it. I’ve always enjoyed sparring – where you can belt someone and get away with it! The club now is like a huge family and that’s inspired me more. My family is down south so it’s like I’ve got a second family up here in Queensland.” Sylvia has trained for three years with the Matthew Flinders-based RTR Taekwon- Do group. The first-degree black belt has set a standard others are keen to follow. “It usually takes several trips to such championships before medals are forthcoming,” said instructor Rocky Rounthwaite. “But Sylvia did it first time, and there was only one point difference between her and the Canadian gold medallist.” “Her five days a week training schedule prepared her well,” said Mr Rounthwaite. “She has particularly inspired junior members at locally based classes to prepare for the Junior World Championships to be held in Italy in 2004.”

After her success Sylvia is assisting in the preparation of aspiring black belt contenders who are due for testing later in the year.

She is also part of the team developing young talent keen to prepare for future competitions. Sylvia has a hobby farm at Landsborough. “My kids go to Landsborough Primary and we have a business in Kalangur.’’ Further information on Taekwon-Do can be obtained at www.rtrtaekwon-do.com.

Sylvia Jensen won a silver medal for Women’s Power Breaking at last month’s ITF Taekwon-Do World Championships.
 
  Left: Smashing effort ... Sylvia in action
at the World Championships.
Our thanks once again to Cameron & Tanya Outridge
of the Range News Newspaper for this story.