Karate champion Chloe Lydon has won a silver medal at the British International Open Championships for a second successive year.
The 16-year-old trains five days a week at the at the College of Haringey, Enfield and North East London’s (CONEL) Martial Arts Academy while studying for a Level 3 Diploma in Sport and Exercise Science.
She was thrilled to have won another medal after repeating her performance in last year’s competition and add to her already impressive haul of medals and trophies.
Chloe, who is ranked 15th in the world for her age and weight, competed in three fights during the completion to earn a place on the podium at Ponds Forge International Sports Centre in Sheffield.
She said: “It was a really big achievement for me. I have got the European placements coming up, so it was a real confidence boost to do so well.
“I was pleased to come away with a silver medal, as it showed my hard work had paid off. I have my sights set on gold next year.”
So far this year, Chloe has won two gold medals in the English Karate Federation Championships and British Karate Federation 4 Nations Championships and bronze in the World Karate Federation Karate1 competition.
“Karate is all about discipline. It helps you to balance things out and focus, which can help with exams and college work,” said Chloe.
“I also love the fitness side of it. It’s also something different, but you still have to work just as hard as in any other sport. It’s also a good way to relieve stress.”
Chloe began taking karate lessons when she was 10 after seeing how much her uncle and cousins enjoyed the sport, and began competing at 13. She is currently a brown belt, but hopes to complete her training to become a black belt by the end of the year.
She said: “Karate will be a new sport at the 2020 Olympics, and the Martial Arts Academy has been really good in helping me to train as a full-time athlete and building up my fitness to give me the chance of fulfilling my dream of competing in Tokyo.”
The Martial Arts Academy, run in partnership with the English Karate Federation, was launched at the College in June and is open to students aged 16 to 18. It offers up to 15 hours professional coaching a week from top coaches, headed up by former world champion Will Thomas.
The academy is also home to students Ben Storey, 17, and David Lister, 16, who have amassed three gold, two silver and two bronze medals between them in domestic and international karate tournaments this year alone.
They and Chloe are part of the College’s Sports Scholarship Programme, which offers young for young athletes aged 16 to 18, who are competing in their chosen sport, physical and financial support
Jonathan Silman, Head of School - Sport, Public Services and Key Stage 4, said: “Our Martial Arts Academy is already proving very popular with many of our students, particularly those studying sport and fitness courses.
“We are incredibly proud of Chloe and congratulate her on her latest success. She is a shining example of what you can achieve in sport through practice, the right attitude, hard work and determination. I am sure we will be hearing a lot more about her in the years to come.”