You can’t miss Chelsea Sim’s bright smiles and cheery personality as she bounces into the room, full of energy and life. She has several gold medals to her name; the most recent won at the 28th SEA Games in Singapore, in the Women’s Individual Poomsae event.

When Chelsea first started Taekwondo, together with her sister, their mum was very worried as both sisters were born with congenital heart disease — a hole in the heart. Today, she is a champion in more ways than one.

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My parents and family had never seen me compete overseas in international competitions, ever since I started Taekwondo. That’s why the 28th SEA Games in Singapore made such a huge difference for me– Seeing each and every one of them cheering for me, especially my grandma who’s my biggest fan!

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Before I went on stage, I was really nervous. I wanted to prove to both myself and everyone else that I can achieve something great. I knew I had expectations to meet. I remember what my coach told me before I went onto the stage: Just do your best. Everyone is here for you and has your back.

This is your stage, own it and live up to it.

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Seeing the national flag and hearing everyone sing the national anthem with me was indescribable. When you’re competing overseas, it’s just you and your team singing the national anthem.

I’ve learned to see mistakes as a stepping stone to greater heights.

In whatever you do, you’re bound to make mistakes and get discouraged. When that happens, be focused and determined, and keep drilling on what you did wrong to ensure that you’ll get it right the next time. I’ve grown to be more resilient and stronger, mentally and physically, through Taekwondo.

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It feels great to be able to make a difference. After my win at the SEA Games, little kids started running up to me, asking for photos. It’s even more heartening when the parents come up and say that their kids really love you, and want to be like you.

My simple message to the kids would be: What doesn’t challenge you doesn’t change you. Live what you love!
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Established in 2002, SMU Taekwondo aims to cultivate a passion for Taekwondo, forging a strong family culture and sense of belonging in the club, and striving for excellence in the competitive arena. “Sports, Family, A Way of Life” is their motto. Check them out on Facebook!

© 2018 Snapshots by SMU