Mar sets the bar high

April 16, 2024 6:44 am

Taekwondo Fijis first para-athlete to the Paralympic Games in Paris this August.

Para-athlete Irene Mar will be the first from the country to compete in Taekwondo at this year’s Paralympic Games in Paris.

Mar, who has a missing nerve in her arm which affects its movement aims to balance her tertiary studies in Marine Science with her full week training schedule, acknowledging it as no easy feat.

The 19-year-old adds that the pressure from the three months ahead of her until the Paris Olympics in July is building but she’s not letting it get to her.

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“I’m trying to take the pressure slowly because I also have my school work to do at University so yeah by the help of my parents they are trying to lift some pressure off by giving me motivation and stuff.”

She says it’s usually an uphill battle balancing the two but she’s grateful for the support she’s receiving as she prepares for the biggest sporting event in the world.

“I felt quite overwhelmed especially being the first taekwondo para-athlete, it was quite interesting and it will also enable me to get more knowledge on the Paralympics side but also help me to come out of my shell that I’m embarrassed of.”

Taekwondo Fiji Coach Master Sang Hyun Ra says this is an iconic moment in his coaching career, guiding an athlete to the highest level of sports.

“I’ve been teaching for 15 years in Fiji but this is the first time taekwondo is going to the Olympics, I’m very proud of us, our athletes and our taekwondo association.”

Mar is now focused on mastering her techniques ahead of the Paralympics which will be held from August 28th to September 8th.