The heart of a champion

A young martial arts athlete continues to build on the solid reputation he established over the past four years.

28 July 2019 | People

Delano Müller; Athlete; “Without desire and determination, you cannot improve your sport performance.”

Walvis Bay • Adolf Kaure

At the tender age of 15, Delano Müller has conquered the world of martial arts.

Müller, who is currently a grade 9 learner at Dolphin School in Walvis Bay, has achieved a lot over the years. Most recently, he won the world title belt in the welterweight division at the Battle of Atlanta World Championships in the United States.

The hard-punching fighter and kicker was also crowned the Namibia Sports Commission Junior Sportsman in 2016 and 2017. This achievement enabled him to be shortlisted for the Regional Annual Sports Awards (RASA).

The number one-ranked United Arab Emirates Jiu-jitsu Federation (UAEJJF) Championships fighter, also won the Boxing Legacy title belt three consecutive times in addition to the first place he pocketed in Judo at the Youth Games held in Namibia in 2018.

He successfully defended his Sub-Sahara title on two consecutive occasions at Desert Storm I and II and is looking forward to doing so once again at this year’s event. The competition is the national qualifier and title fights event held annually in the country for all martial arts. Müller also pocketed a first place in Krav Maga at Desert Storm II in 2018.

Meet the man

Delano describes himself as introverted, friendly, dedicated, competitive and loyal person.

“Motivation, confidence, intensity, focus and emotions form part of the foundation of all athletic accomplishment. Without desire and determination, you cannot improve your sport performance. Motivation is the ability to initiate and persist in sport,” Müller said when asked what keeps him going.

The Walvis Bay-born and raised kickboxer says his main priorities for the upcoming five years are to do well academically and improve himself daily by training hard.

He shared with us what inspired him to become a kickboxer.

“I was born without muscles on my back, and scapular winging. I could not lift my arms above my head without having difficulty and experiencing pain when doing so. This handicap exposed me to bullying. Then my parents introduced me to Kickboxing. I fell in love with the sport on day one and am also doing Jiu-Jitsu.”

His hobbies include mostly sport and he enjoys playing Xbox in his free time.

“I love doing martial arts. My brother Lesley and I are instructors at the Namibian RCFAI (Ring Contact Fighting Arts International) and Kickboxing Academy in Walvis Bay. We train together and love what we do."

Mindset

Müller says he overcomes challenges in his life through passion, dedication and a positive mindset.

He advises youngsters wanting to pursue a career as athletes to keep to sober habits.

“Live a clean and healthy life. Distance yourself from bad habits. Set goals, work hard towards achieving your goals. Be an example to everyone. I always try to be the best version of myself.”

He lists travelling the world and meeting important people like the actors Tanner Buchanan and Mary Mouser, who feature in the hit YouTube series Cobra Kids as a definite highlights. They presented the title belt to him after he won his world title fight at the Battle of Atlanta recently.

Delano further thanked everyone who has helped him become the champion that he is today.

“After I’ve won the world title belt and being the first Namibian to do so, the response from the Namibian nation was simply awesome. I am very fortunate to have the support of my parents and my brothers. My teachers are also very understanding and willing to assist, especially with my busy schedule. Without their support, it wouldn’t have been possible,” he said.

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