World Taekwondo, the governing body of Olympic style taekwondo, announced it will be canceling this year's junior world championships due to health and medical concerns. The event was to take place in Sofia, Bulgaria which will instead now host the 2022 junior world championships.
Doug Rogers, the first Canadian to win an Olympic medal in judo and a member of the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame passed away at the age of 79. Moving to Japan in 1960 at the age of 19 to improve his judo, Rogers trained with many of the era's top judoka including Japanese legend Masahiko Kimura and American Donn Draeger.
With judo making its initial Olympic appearance in the 1964 Tokyo games, Rogers made the finals of the heavyweight division losing a close contest to all-Japan champion Isao Inokuma to take home a silver medal. Eventually becoming an airline pilot, Rogers also earned a bronze medal at the 1965 world championships and a gold at the 1967 Pan-American games.
Herb Perez holds a Gold Medal in Taekwondo from the 1992 Olympics, during the second appearance of the sport on that stage (a demonstration sport at the time, it became a formal Olympic event in the 2000 Summer Games thanks in part to the performance of all the demonstration athletes).
Perez holds an 8th Degree Black Belt in Taekwondo. He currently runs Gold Medal Martial Arts in California, where he has coached others to competitive success. He joined FightBack to help Black Belt support the first responders and medical staff on the front lines against COVID-19.
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Black Belt Hall of Famer Jim Arvanitis weighs in on the subject of pankration and the Olympics, while Black Belt contributing editor Mark Hatmaker looks at the evolution of wrestling and the Games.
Some people are upset whenever art becomes sport on a scale as grand as the Olympics. Others are pleased. In the case of karate, Black Belt Hall of Famer Tokey Hill is among those who are happy. Here's why.
For decades, officials in numerous karate organizations, both international and domestic, have labored to get karate added to the Olympics. Many martial artists thought it would never happen, in part because of redundancy. After all, the Games already have two striking sports (boxing and taekwondo) and a kicking sport (taekwondo). Adding karate sparring, they argued, wouldn’t bring anything new to the event.