By Noly Caluag

The flying side kick is a unique type of kick practiced in traditional martial arts like Taekwondo. To gain momentum for this specialized kick, the martial artist runs to gain momentum, leaps through the air in an acrobatic fashion and delivers a side kick before landing on the ground.

It takes a tremendous amount of mental preparation and demands a lot of athleticism, technique, speed, power, and balance in order to execute this kick accurately. This is one of the most difficult kicks to teach and to master in Taekwondo, and if delivered correctly, is one of the most lethal kicks in this Korean traditional martial art.

To promote the beauty of this highly specialized jumping kick, chief instructor of Guam Taekwondo Center, Master Noly Caluag organized the 4th annual Flying Side Kick tournament at the Micronesia Mall last June 27.

A total of 54 competitors ages 5 to 19 participated in 5 divisions during this all day event. 3rd degree blackbelt, Jed Caluag dazzled martial arts fans by grabbing the men’s gold medal for the 3rd year in a row, while Kameron Delos Santos, 1st degree blackbelt took 1st place in the women’s division. Other gold medalists included Stephen Hoskins, Kekoa Narcis and Jayna Cruz.

Silver medalists were Chris Taimanglo, Mika Delos Santos, DJ Robles, Alex Foreman and Jaelyn Bustamante, while Jared Dacanay, Sam Lorzano, Kristelle Cefre, Ashwin Thomas, Justin Mariano, Kyle Garcia, Elijah Sanchez and Lyra Mugol went home with bronze medals.

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