All in the Family: Oswalds team up to win 10 medals at Taekwondo event |

All in the Family: Oswalds team up to win 10 medals at Taekwondo event

Jon Mitchell
From left, Emily Oswald, Gus Oswald and Carolyn Oswald combined to win 10 medals at the U.S. Open Taekwondo Hanmadang Championships in Colorado Springs in June. The trio has been competing in the nation-wide tournament for four years, but this year was their most successful by far.
Jon Mitchell / |


The following is a list of Pro TKD participants who competed and won medals in the US Open Taekwondo Hanmadang Championships in Colorado Springs in June. The event featured participants from around the world. In all, the 35 competitors combined to capture 68 medals, and Pro TKD was also awarded the Team Spirit Award:

Doug Fuschel (1 gold); Chuck Maker (2 golds); Tristan Maker (1 gold, 1 silver); Miguel Garcia (1 silver); Nicholas O’hare (1 gold); Emelia Aquilar (1 gold, 1 silver, 2 bronze); Diana Aquilar (0 medals); Joy Bouchet (1 gold); Fabiola Castillo (1 silver); Fernanda Castillo (1 silver); Nayar Castillo (1 bronze), Nicholas Castillo (1 silver); Daniel Kapustka (2 gold, 1 bronze); Carolyn Oswald (1 gold, 3 silver); Gus Oswald (1 gold, 1 silver); Emily Oswald (1 silver, 3 bronze); Debbie Macek (1 gold); Mason Macek (1 gold, 1 bronze), Mia Macek (1 gold, 1 silver); Briana Boland (2 silver); Moses Greengrass (1 gold, 1 bronze); Heather Greengrass (1 gold); Lana Greengrass (1 gold, 1 silver, 1 bronze); Nicole Cerdenols (2 gold, 1 bronze); Aaron Varela (1 silver, 1 bronze), Ariel Ruiz (1 gold); Anton Freeman (2 gold, 1 silver); Natasha Rivera (1 gold); Ivan Martinez (1 gold, 1 bronze); Austin Villarreal (1 silver, 1 bronze); Jackson Kruse (3 golds, 1 silver); Lorena Bernal (3 silver); Emma Baumli (3 silver, 1 bronze).

CARBONDALE — Family bonding time for the Oswalds, like most families, can come in the living room of their Basalt home. But that bonding time doesn’t always include watching TV.

It includes kicking. And weapons. And synchronized motions.

And it also includes a massive medal haul from a world-wide event. The three members of Pro TKD Martial Arts Center in Carbondale — mother Carolyn, son Gus and daughter Emily — combined to win 10 of the 68 medals won by 35 members of the school who participated in the U.S. Open Taekwondo Hanmadang Championships held June 20 and 21 at the World Arena in Colorado Springs.

“We have a lot of chances to practice together,” Carolyn Oswald said. “Doing things like this together makes us practice more at home, and it helps when we go to things like this.”

Indeed, the three earned a silver medal in the group team creative form event thanks in part to some of the extra workouts the three did together at home. But that extra practice also paid off for their individual events, as Carolyn, 46, and Gus, 10, each won gold medals in individual creative form without weapons in their respective age groups.

In all, Carolyn won four medals (including three silvers), Gus won two (including one silver), and 8-year-old Emily matched her mom’s medal count (one silver, three bronzes). It’s the third consecutive year the three have competed in the Hanmadang. The event, according to TKD news, is intended to seek “harmonization and unification of taekwondo family” by “promoting spirit and techniques of taekwondo with developing self-defense skills, body training and movement.”

It’s also the fourth year that they’ve done it as a family, and getting a chance to spend that extra time together is something each one of them cherishes.

“I think doing this as a group, as a family, is the best thing about this,” Emily said. “I think it’s a great experience to feel how it is to work together.”

Other events the Oswalds competed in were individual creative forms with — and without — weapons, along with creative forms with partners.

The creative forms are what the family brings home with them more often even though they still make the drive for class in Carbondale four times a week. And when they bring it home, it becomes pretty common for constructive criticism — or non-constructive criticism — to fly around the living room.

“I’m able to help them with their form, write things down and tell them weather or not something looks right,” Carolyn said. “And they’ll do the same to me. There’s been more than once when they’ve looked at me and said, ‘Mom, that looks terrible!’”

The refreshing thing for the Oswalds, however, is that they’re not the only family doing this any more. Carolyn said that the amount of families the Oswalds had seen during their first trip to the Hanmandang had increased five-fold at this past event.

And in a way, it’s kind of refreshing for them to feel like they’ve set a trend.

“I think this is a great way to bond with each other and a great way to find friends,’ Emily said. “Now other people are seeing that, too.”

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