Karate kid dreams big

Martial artist looking to qualify for the 2020 Olympics.

12 November 2018 | Sports

Katelin Martin; Martial Artist; “What fun would life be if it was easy? Everything I want I fight for.”

Otis Finck - Katelin Martin (20) travelled to the Karate World Championship in Madrid, Spain, held from 3 to 11 November, with high hopes.

The Walvis Bay born and bred “karate kid” is part of a three-member Namibian team, with her father Shihan Leonard Martin as coach and team manager.

The prestigious tournament is hailed as the ultimate showdown of world karate where top athletes compete. It is also regarded as the perfect foundation and preparation for the 2020 Olympics in Japan where Katelin intends to showcase her martial art skills.

Shihan Martin competed at the event in 1996 and finished among the top 16. No other Namibian competed at the Karate World Championship ever since.

Fast forward 20 years and his daughter Katelin is following in her tough as nails father’s footsteps.

Erongo caught up with Katelin during a training session in Walvis Bay and before her departure to Spain where she was to compete in the senior ladies individual kata with 75 other competitors from all over the world.

She trains from Monday to Sunday and gyms from Monday to Friday with gym workouts after each session. She also practices karate from Monday to Sunday and jogs whenever time permits.

All this needs to be balanced with preparing for her matric final exams.

“I am highly motivated and it’s an honour to live up to the high standards set by my father who left a legacy. He never competed at the Olympics since karate was only recently accommodated. Getting accepted into the Olympics will be a personal accomplishment and a realisation of my father’s dream.”

Katelin is ranked 112th out of 650 female participants in the world under World Karate Federation statutes. For Namibia to qualify for the 2020 Olympics she is ranked 17th.

Shihan Martin explained that Africa will most probably receive 4 Olympic slots. He added that it was important for Katelin to accumulate points to up her standings in the rankings in order to qualify.

“She is the only Namibian on the rankings placed so high and with a real chance of qualifying. She also needs to compete at premier league level next year to accumulate points to strengthen her chance of qualifying for the Olympics. ”

Katelin says there is much more to karate than just kicking and punching.

“It’s about understanding the art, the essence of where inner power comes from and the culture behind the sport.”

She was excited and said she was looking forward to the upcoming Karate World Championship and the prospects of qualifying for the Olympics.

“The level of intensity is high at the competition and much higher than my own level. It will be something new to experience. I want to make it through the first rounds.”

Her friends motivate her and for a girl who hated karate as a youngster, she has come a long way.

“I initially felt forced to do karate until I visited Japan in 2014 for my first black belt grading. That’s when I started understanding my style, the reason for the movements and fell in love with the sport.”

She became the first Namibian female to compete at the All Africa Games in 2015 and finished 4th with a top 5 ranking. She also obtained a 3rd place at the 2017 Goju Kai World Championships in Canada, won bronze at the Zone 6 in Botswana, finished 4th at UFAC, won the Open Lüderitz Championship, the Namibian Nationals and the National Goju Kai championships.

“Getting onto the podium with your country’s flag is an indescribable experience. Namibians are underestimated, and putting our country on the map is an achievement in its own.”

An encounter with Han Shi Peter Brandon during the South African Open resulted in her being driven for competitions and is the reason why she takes opponents down.

“He spelled out his expectations and told me that he knows I can achieve the highest level and am capable of doing so.”

Her mother, Erica, is also always in the background cheering her on and very supportive of the decisions she makes.

“What fun would life be if it was easy? Everything I want I fight for. Any dream is possible and achieving something has to do with your mindset. Don’t just sit and dream about doing something go out and do it,” she advises.

Katelin intends to study Bio Kinetics and Sport Science at Centurion Academy in Bellville, Cape Town, next year.

Catch her in action at the Region 5 championship to be hosted by Namibia at the end of May 2019. The Continental Championships 2019 UFAK Senior Championships will take place in Botswana in middle August. The All Africa Games is slated for Morocco from the end of July to mid-August.

Similar News

 

More interhouse athletics records shattered

3 days ago - 18 February 2019 | Sports

Otis Finck - Twenty six school track and field records were improved during the Pro-Ed Academy interhouse athletics meeting at the Vineta North Stadium in...

Rugby balls for Swakop Secondary School

3 days ago - 18 February 2019 | Sports

Otis Finck - Dolphin Rugby Club sponsored rugby balls to Swakop Secondary School (SSS) recently. The club also supports the school with training equipment,...

First shots fired in regional competition

3 days ago - 18 February 2019 | Sports

The Namibian Hunting Rifle Shooting Association (NHRSA) hosted its first competition leg for the 2019 season on 9 February in Swakopmund. The tricky terrain, windy...

On your marks, get set, go! ...

3 days ago - 18 February 2019 | Sports

Otis Finck - More than a thousand primary and high school athletes were in action at the Welwitschia School Sport Zone (WSSZ) zonal inter-schools track...

CAN IV championships underway

3 days ago - 18 February 2019 | Sports

Yolanda Nel- The Confederation Africaine De Natation Amateur (CANA) Zone IV Swimming Championships started on Saturday, featuring some of the continent’s top aquatic talent. ...

Bowls off to a flying start

1 week ago - 11 February 2019 | Sports

The Namib Park Bowling Club held its first competition of the year in preparation for National Bowls League which started yesterday at Namib Park in...

Kickboxers awarded

1 week ago - 11 February 2019 | Sports

Leandrea Louw - The Namibian Ring Contact Fighting Arts and Kickboxing Academy hosted its annual awards ceremony in Walvis Bay.Mia Kittler was awarded as the...

Taking Dolphin Rugby Club to the next level ...

1 week ago - 11 February 2019 | Sports

OTIS FINCK - Coaching rugby requires a considerable amount of time, says newly appointed Dolphin Rugby Club coach Clayton Beukes. Beukes is no...

Blue Waters and Eleven Arrows on the mend...

2 weeks ago - 04 February 2019 | Sports

Otis Finck - Coastal glamour boys Eleven Arrows will face Black Africa twice this month.Arrows will take on Black Africa in a Namibian Premier League...

Coastal bowlers on a roll for national team ...

2 weeks ago - 04 February 2019 | Sports

The Namibia Bowling Association (NBA) announced the lawn bowls team after the trials which took place last weekend. Six players from Walvis Bay and Swakopmund...

Latest News

Council approves MOU with SDFN

3 days ago - 18 February 2019 | Government

Adolf Kaure - The municipal council has approved a proposed memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Shack Dwellers Federations of Namibia (SDFN) during its latest...

Child rapist gets 35 years...

3 days ago - 18 February 2019 | Crime

Otis Finck - Dragan Vujicin (68) was sentenced to 35 years direct imprisonment on five counts of rape and four counts of human trafficking involving...

New education director expects better...

3 days ago - 18 February 2019 | Education

Leandrea Louw - The recently appointed regional director of education, Erenfriede Stephanus, assured regional education practitioners that the new leadership is ready to tackle the...

Flamingo awards best athletes ...

3 days ago - 18 February 2019 | Education

Leandrea Louw - Flamingo Primary School recently held its annual interhouse athletics competition.The top performers were Bogani Mvula and Promise Nakuta. The best athletes in...

Grooming future journalists

3 days ago - 18 February 2019 | Education

Leandrea Louw - The Namibia Media Holdings (NMH) youth brand, My Zone, hosted its fourth media camp in Windhoek recently. Seven schools from Walvis Bay...

Body goals

3 days ago - 18 February 2019 | Opinion

The holy bible says that our bodies are the temples of Holy Spirit and that automatically gives everyone an obligation to take care of theirs....

Learner builds quad bike ...

3 days ago - 18 February 2019 | Others

Leandrea Louw - A Grade 7 learner at Narraville Primary School in Walvis Bay built a 230 cc quad bike from secondhand and scrap material...

Parkrun growing in strides

3 days ago - 18 February 2019 | Health

Otis Finck - The weekly free 5 km timed Walvis Bay parkrun celebrated its first year anniversary recently. It was also the 48th...

Face of Namibia expo launched...

3 days ago - 18 February 2019 | Events

Leandrea Louw- The fourth annual Face of Namibia expo is set to take place from 27 to 30 March in front of the Kuisebmond Stadium...

Load More