Herndon girl kicks her technique to gold at taekwondo nationwide championship


Some of the perfect beginner taekwondo athletes within the U.S. spent final week in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, competing at The AAU Taekwondo National Championship. A Fairfax County, Virginia, girl was amongst them.

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Herndon mom takes dwelling gold at AAU Taekwondo National Championships

Some of the perfect beginner taekwondo athletes within the United States spent the final week in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, competing on the AAU Taekwondo National Championship.

Competitors wearing all-white uniforms adopted the principles set by the Amateur Athletic Union Taekwondo Handbook and had been judged on approach, energy, focus, rhythm, grace and wonder.

Elena Kelley of Herndon, Virginia, is bringing dwelling the nationwide championship within the 33-42 feminine bracket within the conventional open varieties in poomsae.

“(A) 41-year-old mother with two youngsters, with a full-time job — not dangerous,” Kelley mentioned.

What makes this achievement much more spectacular is that Kelley has solely been finding out taekwondo for 3 years — she mentioned she is proof that taekwondo is for everybody.

“If it conjures up some ladies to start out doing taekwondo, I will likely be very completely satisfied,” Kelley instructed WTOP.

elena kelley
Elena Kelley of Herndon, Virginia, is bringing dwelling the gold after the AAU Taekwondo National Championship.
(Courtesy Brian Kelley)

Courtesy Brian Kelley

Kelley stands holding a gold medal while wearing her white taekwondo uniform. Her young daughter, wearing a blue shirt, hugs her side.
Kelley and her daughter, Alexandra, earned their black belts collectively and nonetheless practice 3 times every week.
(Courtesy Brian Kelley)

Courtesy Brian Kelley

In an action shot, Kelley kicks the air, her back visible as a distant crowd watches.
Kelley was born within the Capital of Siberia, Russia, and he or she believes the 12 years she spent finding out dance helped her with taekwondo.
(Courtesy Brian Kelley)

Courtesy Brian Kelley

In 2022, she and her then-six-year-old daughter Alexandra joined the household class at Grandmaster H.Okay. Lee Academy of TaeKwonDo in Herndon.

“During COVID, we might go in with our masks on,” Kelley mentioned. “Now, it’s my No. 1 interest.”

The mom and daughter earned their black belts collectively and nonetheless practice 3 times every week.

Kelley mentioned she was born within the Capital of Siberia, Russia, and that the 12 years she spent finding out dance helped her with taekwondo.

“Absolutely coordination, flexibility and a need to win,” Kelley mentioned.

Since successful the nationwide championship and scoring a third place medal in sparring, Kelley has heard from a whole lot of mates.

“I acquired a whole lot of texts,” she mentioned, together with one from an older good friend that learn “When I develop up, I need to be you.”

When Kelley will not be competing for championships, she works as program management analyst on the MIL Corporation.

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