Over the past weekend one of our good friends/client Alyssa Fencil invited us out to the Iowa State Taekwondo tournament presented by the Iowa Taekwondo Alliance. We jumped at the chance to escape our little part of Wisconsin for a fun weekend away, cabin fever in Wisconsin is real let me tell you folks.
While there we met a young Para-athlete named Justin who has cerebral palsy whose zest for life was earth shattering. I had the chance to sit down with Justin and learn a little bit about what he likes, from taekwondo, to being a DJ, his love of music and what life is like in Detroit.
As a fun day of photographing young and old athletes progressed it became apparent that I was able to cover high end athletes that are masters in their craft and were hoping to be able to make it to nationals later this year in Salt Lake City, Utah(July 2nd- 9th).
Later in the day I got to watch Justin demonstrate his forum of poomsae during the Iowa State Tournament, it is awe-inspiring. His no fear attitude and I’m going to go out there and do/be me and leave it all on the mat is infectious. By the end of Justin’s poomsae performance everyone was watching Justin and were giving him a rousing ovation. It got me thinking, there is a person worth looking up to for a whole modicum of reasons and his drive to compete should help all set better goals in our own lives and try that much harder to achieve them.
I loved being able to see what it means to the athletes to compete. One of my favorite moments came when I got to watch two little girls compete and let me say those two little girls were vicious. By watching them one could tell everything was getting left out on the mat, the ref even had to step in a few times because I believed there were a few illegal hits/kicks involved. Still it was fun to watch.
At the end of the day I got to watch our good friend Alyssa compete in an exhibition match against Beatriz, it was interesting to watch her fight because normally all we really do with her is posed photographs for marketing and family purposed. Needless to say, it was so much more fun being able to watch her try to figure her opponents next move and be able to defend or find a new way to attack around what was coming at her. It ended up with a victory for Alyssa by the end of the match which was icing on the cake for a very memorable day.
If you competed at the Iowa State Tournament this weekend there is a link below to where you can find your pictures.