Father and daughter sparring for big titles: Taekwondo

A DIANELLA father and daughter are keeping taekwondo in the family and recently brought home gold medals from international competitions.

Ashley Ratten won gold in June at the Open World Taekwondo Championships in Italy and his daughter Sonya won gold at the Australian National Taekwondo Championships in Adelaide this month.

They typically train four nights a week at ATI Martial Arts in Malaga when preparing for competitions.

Ratten said Sonya now has her sights set on international competitions at only 11 years of age.

“When I won she said to me ‘Dad, I wanted to be the first world champion in the family’,” Ratten said.

The pair said the sport provided a unique bond between them.

“At home and even out and about we mess around with technique and countering in a playful manner.

“Taekwondo is the type of thing that suits all skills and ages; there are so many families that enjoy training together.”

Ratten said the sport has not only helped them live a fit and healthy lifestyle but created a social group as well.

“Our local club ATI and the greater taekwondo community are very embracing and supportive.

“Even through all the full-contact competitions there is a huge sense of camaraderie and community spirit.

“Sonya and I have not only made friends around the country but the world thanks to the spirit of the sport and having that mutual interest.”