Young athletes work out with hockey idols

A couple of young karate-kickboxing kids held their own at a boot camp with older karate-kickboxing athletes and several River Kings.

A couple of young karate-kickboxing kids held their own at a boot camp with older karate-kickboxing athletes and several River Kings players.

Shawn, 7, and Farren, 9, Devcic worked out with Terrace River Kings Derek Jurista, Cameron Kerr and Jeremy Vandenbroek at a recent five-week-long boot camp put on by Amber Pipe and Rajan Sangha of Shogun Dojo where the kids normally train.

All of the young people at Shogun, except for a couple who couldn’t make it, joined in on the boot camp for some extra training before they headed off to the world martial arts games this week.

Shawn, who’s a green belt, and Farren, who has a blue belt, were very dedicated, and they, plus a couple of older boys, were the only ones to come to the entire boot camp, said Sangha. “They didn’t miss a class. They were going up the hills with us, running at Parkside and all the rest of it,” he said about how the two young boys did everything their older counterparts did.

The River Kings players were there for some extra pre-season training.

The boys would train alongside the hockey players, such as pairing up with a player when the boot camp went to the dojo and did a circuit of 20 stations.

And the hockey players enjoyed working out with the kids, added Sangha, saying it shows how they feel about kids in the community. “They usually work out with friends and the fact that they would grab one kid and say ‘hey let’s go,’ was really cool,” he said about the workouts.

And the boys had a blast too.

“They loved it.  They look up to the River Kings quite a bit,” said Sangha. Shawn and Farren didn’t miss a karate class and in the last three weeks instead of working out from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. twice a week, they were showing up at 5 p.m. and training three or four days a week, said Sangha.

“They’ve come a long way in the last three weeks,” he added.

At the world competition in Richmond this weekend, the two boys and the rest of Shogun Dojo will go up against competitors with similar skill levels and ages.

“I think they’re going to do awesome,” said Sangha. The Association for  International Sport for All (TAFISA) World Martial Arts Games starts today through Sept. 7 at the Olympic Oval in Richmond, B.C.

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