Colorado Results from 2013 World Championships

(Puebla, MX) – The 2013 World Taekwondo Championships drew almost 1000 athletes from more than 150 countries. Each Member National Association (MNA) is allowed to enter a maximum of one person in each weight division. There are 8 divisions for men and 8 form women. Depending on the country, these spots are highly contested for up to a year and a half before the event. See our report on the basics of the tournament. 

Colorado had three athletes competing – Ahmed Alsubaihawi (58 kg Iraq), Khusrav Giyosov (68 kg Tajikistan) and Alisher Gulov (87 kg Tajikistan). Colorado Martial Arts News has been following their training and preparations over the last several months and was there as they stepped onto the mat.

996501_562721413792906_1464633469_nAhmed Alsubaihawi was up first, on Monday July 15th. He was training to compete in the bantamweight category (63 kg) but was told by the Iraqi Federation a few days before the tournament that he had to change to the flyweight category (58 kg) as there was another athlete who was higher ranked in 63 kg. Alsubaihawi lost the required 5 kg and made his weight, but his strength was affected. He faced from Domeneco Gemma from Italy. Alsubaihawi started off well, leading the match throughout. He lost a point to a cover punch when attacking from closed stance, and later changed his attack to ax kick. The resulting photo was picked up by the official World Taekwondo Federation (WTF) Facebook page and widely shared. Gemma scored a headshot at the beginning of the third round, and Alsubaihawi was too fatigued to catch up. He ended up losing the match 9-11.

coach komil and ahmed

Master Komil giving Ahmed tips before the third round.


Giyosov about to enter the ring. The livestream was broadcast all over the world.

Next was Khusrav Giyosov on Wednesday, July 17th. He drew Thomas Afonczenko from Australia. Giyosov hit an early spinning hook kick to go up 4-0. They traded points and kyongos throughout, until Afonczenko hit a left leg crescent kick from the clinch with 12 seconds left in the third round. Giyosov had been blocking Afonczenko’s signature move throughout the match, but one slipped in. Giyosov tried frantically to get another headshot, but ended up losing by accumulating too many kyongos.





Gulov signing autographs after his match

Gulov signing autographs after his match

The final Colorado athlete was 2012 Olympian Alisher Gulov who competed in the heavyweight division on Friday, July 19th. Gulov’s first match was against a WTF wildcard from India who scratched. He then faced 2012 African Champion from Egypt, Mohammed Ayman. Gulov looked to be in control early as he hit a nice crescent kick, but his points were nullified and he was called for pushing. The match ended in a tie and went to overtime where Ayman scored a roundhouse to the body. It was a disappointing finish for Gulov, who had made the quarterfinals in the last world championships.

There was a large disparity in the funding that many national teams received, with some receiving only the entry fee and many receiving hundreds of thousands of dollars per cycle. The United States team finished the whole tournament without any medals, to the surprise of many observers. Even London bronze medalists Terrance Jennings and Paige McPherson were unable to gain the podium. The US Team doesn’t receive the same level of funding as many other teams do.

Master Bill Pottle summed up the results for the Colorado athletes. “It was frustrating to lose matches that we know we could have won. In a way this even reminded me of the infamous Broncos/Ravens game. However, that is the nature of sports, especially at a high level. Nonetheless, this tournament was a tremendous experience for these athletes that they will remember for the rest of their lives.”

See more about Littleton Taekwondo or Aurora Taekwondo.

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World Championships 2013 in Puebla, Mexico

(Puebla, MX) – The World Championships of Taekwondo 2013 was an experience of a lifetime. Held in the beautiful city of Puebla, Mexico, this championship was very memorable. The city of Puebla did an amazing job of hosting the tournament. Everything was highly organized and well planned out. From the moment teams arrived at the airport,  they were immediately taken care of. Three athletes from Colorado attended. They were Ahmed Alsubaihawi (-58 kg Iraq), Khusrav Giyosov (-68 kg Tajikistan) and Alisher Gulov. (+87 kg Tajikistan)


cati mascot

Ahmed A playfully spars with Cati, the mascot.

The opening ceremony was incredible. It was evident that many, many months of preparation went into this special evening. For many, it felt like a smaller version of the Olympics that was centered only around taekwondo. While waiting for the ceremony to begin, Cati (the official mascot of the Puebla World Championships) took the stage and showed off her dance moves to get the crowd excited. The ceremony began with a wonderful performance reenacting the ancient Mexican story of Popocatépetl and the princess, complete with a massive volcano and hundreds of skilled dancers. Following this performance, one athlete from each country was given the honor of caring their country’s flag and was accompanied by a woman wearing the traditional Mexican clothing. Two athletes from the Korean Academy of Taekwondo were given this honor. Ahmed Alsubaihawi carried the Iraq flag and Coach Komil Latipov held the Tajikistan flag. With each country announced, the flag bearer’s fellow teammates would scream and do a rehearsed cheer, each one trying to be louder than the team before them. After each of the 150 participating countries was represented, the hundreds of referees carrying the WTF flag entered the arena. The highlight of the evening was the performance by the WTF Demo Team. With amazing choreography and perfectly in-sync, the “Tigers” left the audience in awe after breaking boards held at least 10ft. off the ground followed by a back flip!

opening ceremony1

Opening Ceremonies

Puebla was a truly wonderful host city. Each national team was assigned a guide or attaché to help them throughout the week. The Colorado athletes were Team Iraq and TaeTajikistan, and they got the privilege of having two wonderful volunteers, Karen and Dulce. These girls were incredibly helpful and made sure every need  was taken care of – including rescuing a forgotten wallet and passport from the back of a taxi, finding hotels, translating, and leading on a special tour of Puebla. These girls, and all of the tournament staff, were some of the nicest and most helpful people. It was evident that their primary goal was to make sure that the athletes’ and coaches’ only concern was to worry about performing their best. It was clear that this was a very special event for the city of Puebla because they had a large billboard in front of the famous Cathedral in downtown Puebla, displaying a countdown for the number of days until the tournament began. Every day a very long line would form in front of a small trailer set up in the town square that was selling tickets for that night’s semi-final and final matches. People couldn’t wait to watch taekwondo and cheer on their country. Customers could also get a ticket at McDonalds as a treat with their value meals.

komil flag ahmed flag1The tournament venue was also well set up.  The “House of Taekwondo” as they called it had everything needed – a large, matted training area for the athletes (equipped with free Gatorade and water), a healthy buffet just for athletes and coaches, booths for sponsors, and much more! The vendor area was always packed with people buying souvenirs and eating food from the various cuisines available. You were able to get anything from a delicious chai tea latte, a beer from the massive Heineken stand, a McDonald’s Big Mac, or some traditional Mexican mole poblano. They also had different stands where fans could try out their taekwondo skills through interactive video games or BOBs with sensors in them. For  athletes and coaches, the vendor area turned into picture and autograph central. While in the area athletes couldn’t go more than a few minutes without numerous fans asking for pictures and autographs. This was a relatively novel experience, and came from the fact that Taekwondo is the 2nd most popular sport in Mexico.


L to R – Master Komil, Ahmed A, Karen, Dulce, Sarah A


Opening Cermony Breaking

One of the most memorable experiences of the tournament was sitting in the stands amongst thousands of Mexican fans to watch Mexico in some of the semi-final matches. The Mexican fans are some of the most patriotic and supportive fans in the world.  Anyone could feel the love they have for their country and for taekwondo. It was an incredible experience to feel the stands shake from the people stomping their feet and cheering as loud as they possibly could. Just a single point and the crowd would go crazy. Many of them had clappers that also aided in the cheering and held up huge Mexican flags.

Going to the World Championships in Puebla will be an experience This reporter will never forget.

To see the full results, visit

You can also see a behind the scenes highlight video.

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Colorado Demo Team wins 2nd at US National Championships

Chicago, IL – After months of fundraising, training, and refining, Universal Tae Kwon Do Team Thunder went to the USAT National Championships where they performed very well.  Due to the scheduling, the demo team competition went late into the night after not starting until after 10:00 P.M.  While exhausted from the day’s events, which saw nearly half the team compete in individual events, Team Thunder caught a 2nd wind and ended up performing what was the best demonstration in their competitive careers.   While it was a very close competition, Team Thunder gladly walked away with a silver medal, in just their 2nd year going to Nationals, also beating their last year’s 4th place finish.  With the amount of hard work and effort they put in, they are truly on their way to doing even greater things.

Team Thunder’s Silver Medal Performance at the 2013 USAT National Championships

In individual events, the team took home 1 Gold Medal and 3 Bronze Medals.   Lucas Perko, who won a gold medal Dallas last year in weapons, competed for the first time in the black belt division, and ended up winning gold this year as well, making him a 2 time National champion in weapons.   Lauren Auten took home a Bronze Medal in Adult Black Belt Grassroots forms, and Nathan Straub, in his first national tournament, took home a Bronze in Blue Belt Forms as well.   Richard Van Horn capped the medal count with a Bronze in Red Belt Adult Fly Weight sparring.

Lucas Perko’s 2013 Nationals Performance.

Every other member of the team who competed in individual events did very well also, but found himself or herself just short of finding a place on the podium.  Most of the forms competitors ended up making it to the final round of very large divisions, showing a huge improvement over last year, and a lot of their board breaking and weapons competitors found themselves in 5th or 6th place as well, proving that for next year they have to put in just a little bit more work to get them on the podium.

Coach Mark Auten told Colorado Martial Arts News: “I couldn’t have been any prouder to coach these students, and to see all of their hard work show.   They represented the school and the state very well this year, and will look to do the same come next year.”

Master Barb Kunkel’s Academy of Life and Leadership Taekwondo team did not attend the USAT Nationals this year, instead attending the ATU Nationals where they placed first.

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Colorado Martial Arts Awards

MA_AwardsDenver, COColorado Martial Arts News is proud to announce the inaugural red-carpet Colorado Martial Arts Awards!  These awards seek to recognize outstanding accomplishments by martial artists in the state. This includes things like competitions won, but also things like hardships overcome. There are many ‘martial arts halls of fame’ where anyone can be inducted simply by possessing a check for a few hundred dollars as well as ‘life experience.’ These awards are nothing like that.

Nominations are open to the general public. Anyone can submit a youtube clip to enter any one of the categories. The Nominating Committee will choose up to 5 finalists for each award, at which point the general public will be able to vote for the winners. Next summer we will host the red-carpet awards show in a high school auditorium, complete with special performances, speeches by the winners, and booths by sponsors. The idea behind this event is a time to bring schools in Colorado together as well as have fun and build team spirit.

Winners will receive an award (design pending) while finalists will all receive a certificate. More information (including applications for sponsorship) will come as the event gets closer.

The initial categories are as follows:

Submission of the year

Match of the year (2 people)
Kick of the year
Punch of the year
Form of the year (traditional)
Form of the year (creative )
Form of the year (weapon)
Combo of the year
Demo of the year
Break of the year
Trick of the year
Photo of the year (photographer)
Story of the year
Indomitable spirit award
Comeback of the year (injury or tragedy)
Special needs student of the year
Movie of the year (Made by a school)
Here is a rough timeline for events.
November 1st, 2013 – Instructors and School Owners can submit suggestions for any category not listed.
Jan 1st, 2014 – Submissions open. The video must have been made during 2013.
March 15th, 2014 – The Nominating Committee will announce finalists. They may also choose to split of combine categories (ie, male and female, child and adult, color belt and black belt, etc) to ensure competitiveness.
March 15th, 2014 – July 1st, 2014 – Open voting
Mid/Late July, 2014 – Awards Show.
The Nominating Committee (NC) will consist of one person from each school that has entered a video. Email [email protected] if you are the representative for your school.
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Coloradomanews x DressHead Plus Size Midi Retro-Style Dress – Short Sleeves / Polka Dot Skirts

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Sparring expo 3.0 at Tiger Kim’s Academy June 29 2013


expo 3.0Poster-DaedoSparringExpo3.0-LetterSizeDaedo Expo 3.0,  Sparring expo at Tiger Kim’s Academy.  Four rings of Daedo Electronics and everyone will get to do sparring four to six times round robin.  All martial schools are welcome to participated in this great event, Having the latest software updates and new transmitters for equipment. The Daedo expo 3.0 will expect to have more participants and more matches to come. Expo 3.0 Sparring will be June 29 2013.

This sparring expo/scrimmages are a very good way to get the practice and experience needed to succeed in the upcoming tournaments.

To Get More info please go to

or call 303-388-1408,


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Colorado State Taekwondo Association to Sponsor Athletes for Nationals

(Denver, CO) – The Colorado State Taekwondo Association (COSTA) will give $50 stipends to any Colorado athlete who competes at the US National Championships in Chicago. Athletes must register for the national championships and pay first, and then email a copy of the confirmation page to Angela DeOlivera (COSTA Treasurer).

The Colorado State Taekwondo Association is a 501c3 non-profit who supports Colorado athletes to the tune of thousands of dollars every year.

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Olympians to host Seminar in preparation for World Taekwondo Championships

(Aurora, CO) – The Korean Academy of Taekwondo will host a special seminar on June 15th, 2013. The seminar will be put on by the Tajikistan National Taekwondo Team, including 2012 Olympians Farkhod Negmatov and Alisher Gulov. National team member Khusrav Giyosov will also be instructing.

Olympians SeminarGulov and Negmatov both punched their ticket to the London 2012 Olympic games by placing in the top 3 out of all competitors in Asia during the Asian Olympic Qualification tournament. They now want to share their expertise in the martial art and sport with the Colorado Martial Arts Community.

The price is extremely reasonable for a seminar of this quality, and there will be two sessions. Students CAN stay for both sessions, regardless of rank.

Olympians are very rare in Taekwondo, especially those who have experience sparring at this level with the Daedo system. Their insights should prove invaluable to anyone preparing for nationals in July.



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MSU brings home golds from Collegiate Nationals

Ivan Smirnou, blue, performs an axe kick against his opponent at the National Collegiate Taekwondo Championship on Sunday April 14 in Colorado Springs.  Photo by Courtland Wilson.

Ivan Smirnou, blue, performs an axe kick against his opponent at the National Collegiate Taekwondo Championship on Sunday April 14 in Colorado Springs. Photo by Courtland Wilson.

Colorado Springs, Colo. – Hundreds of fighters and their families flocked from all over the country to compete in the 38th National Collegiate Taekwondo Championship on Saturday April 13.  The two-day tournament was hosted at the U.S. Olympic Training Center and held competitions in forms on Saturday and sparring on Sunday.

Metro State University was among 70 schools enrolled for the competition. Some of the big-name schools such as Duke, Cornell, Yale, Stanford, and MIT also made an appearance.  Although not all of ACT’s (Auraria Campus Taekwondo) fighters earned medals, a few were skilled enough to walk away with one to take home.  MSU student Ivan Smirnou, high-red belt, has trained long and hard for this tournament.  He and his friend Daniil Dorovskikh, green belt, both came from Russia and both fought their way to first place in their divisions.  Smirnou fought in the red belt division against Stanford for the gold while Dorovskikh was paired up against Princeton in his green/ blue belt division. They both defeated several other schools to make it to the finals.

It feels great to win gold for Metro among those big schools like MIT and Penn State,” Smirnou added after the competition.  “To show them that we can kick as well.

A handful of other students from ACT placed third in their respective divisions:  Adrian Salazar earned bronze in yellow belt forms and sparring events.  Billy Garduno and Darius Ray also earned bronze medals for their efforts in the sparring ring.  And Lydia McCullough took bronze in red belt sparring. In the black belt division, Heather Gibson also took home a bronze medal.

ACT head coach and MSU professor Master Bill Pottle had nothing but good things to say about his students’ performances.  “I’m really proud of all the students whether they medaled or not.  They showed a lot of heart to step on the mat and face against competitors from top schools around the country,” says Pottle.  “Even the ones who didn’t medal were close to doing so.”  Overall, MSU placed 7th out of the 70 schools that participated.

Daniil Dorovskikh walks away happily for earning his first gold medal at the National Collegiate Taekwondo Championship on Sunday April 14 in Colorado Springs.  Photo by Courtland Wilson.

Daniil Dorovskikh walks away happily for earning his first gold medal at the National Collegiate Taekwondo Championship on Sunday April 14 in Colorado Springs. Photo by Courtland Wilson.

In November 2012, MSU competed in the Rocky Mountain Collegiate TKD League tournament in Henderson, CO and took first place.  Historically, MSU remains undefeated amongst schools in Colorado. With the results from nationals they will once again be RMCTL Champions, placing ahead of CU Boulder, CSU, UNC, ACC, and Air Force.

Although it is always a great sensation to return home with a gold medal hanging around your neck, nothing beats the feeling of your buddies cheering you on in the ring.  “The best feeling was when all my teammates were down there and were cheering me on,” says Dorovskikh.  “The medal was great, but it can’t be compared to my friends’ support.”

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Tournament flyer

(Denver, CO) – Beautiful Colorado is well known for spring snow storms and for great martial arts events. This past weekend was testament to that fact. The blizzard set a beautiful backdrop for the 2013 Twin Dragon Tournament. It was held, as usual, in the spacious gym at Metro State College of Denver. Hosting the event was KAT Taekwondo.  The excitement was energized and maintained throughout the day, by the KAT crew, the reliable COSTA officials, and the many volunteers. This martial arts event brought together many different disciplines from all over the state and beyond. There were over 325 competitors, making it the largest tournament by any COSTA school in recent years. A cool addition was the Kung Fu: Spectators found their forms to be very fluid and well balanced. Also, events in Olympic sparring, grappling, forms, board breaking, demonstrations, weapons, and blaster pad all took place. All the competitors were winners, and along with the awesome coveted magnetic interlocking medals, awarded solely by KAT events, additional prizes and a cash purse was also to be had.


A family showing off the interlocking medals

2013 twin dragon


An interesting element to the Twin Dragons Tournament was the different teams supporting different area elementary schools. The energy was high, with many teams very close to each other in strength. You can  see how the final results came out.  A big bow along with a big round of applause goes out to the students that supported their schools.[/caption]


Northridge Girls

When broken down by the various events, the top winners are as follows: The poomsae event went to Greenwood Options and Global Village Academy. The demo event was won by Global Village Academy and Aurora Quest. Greenwood Options and Global Village worked their way to the top in board breaking. The grappling event tied up with Global Village and Crescent View, while the top sparring award went to Crescent View and Quest. Some really cool Grand Champion Belts were awarded, too. They went to Rey Martinez, Jibreal Jones, Riley Ward, Isabella Walsh, SirGregory Solonis, & Laron Younger.

In closing, the Twin Dragons Tournament was a great success, in terms of competitor satisfaction and family fun! Personally, my favorites were the Black-belt Demo Team, with board breaking skills that were high-flying and very energetic, and the blaster pads, that are always a hit for any and all that try. I look forward towards the next Twin Dragon Tournament. In the mean time, we must train and watch the schedule for upcoming martial arts events. Go to: to find out more on martial arts events in and around your area. If you wood like to attend the next KAT event, go to:


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