The Vista Voice

Vista’s Taekwondo Master

Lynnette+receiving+her+4th+degree+Black+Belt+from+her+taekwondo+master.+
Lynnette receiving her 4th degree Black Belt from her taekwondo master.

Lynnette receiving her 4th degree Black Belt from her taekwondo master.

Lynnette receiving her 4th degree Black Belt from her taekwondo master.

David Hull, Writer

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Scattered across a mat, students spar in the re-emerging art, taekwondo. One stands out amongst the rest–Lynnette Hersh, a sophomore at Vista del Lago, is the youngest person to earn a fourth-degree black belt in the United World Taekwondo Association.

Enrolled in the Folsom Taekwondo Center, Hersh has participated in taekwondo since she was four and a half. Ten years later, Hersh is a master and training with the adult classes. “Vigorous,” said Hersh describing training, “but it’s really fun when we do drills.”

Hersh was first exposed to taekwondo when she was 4 years old when her parents signed her up. Now she can’t give it up. “They’re like family, and you don’t leave family,” said Hersh, giving a full scope of how much she loves what she does.

However, it isn’t all fun and games. Practices are Tuesday and Thursdays from 8 p.m. to 9 p.m., with extra training and activities on Saturdays.

“It takes motivation, determination and most importantly confidence,” said Hersh.

Hersh is confident she could defend herself against anyone she comes across.

Finding a balance between a demanding athletic schedule and school is something many student-athletes struggle to find, but Hersh seems to be managing just fine. She even throws piano into the mix. The key for her is the discipline that 10 years of taekwondo has taught her.  

“Taekwondo definitely takes out stress and helps me be more confident with stuff at school,” said Hersh.

Her parents and taekwondo masters are proud of Lynnette and the way she faces challenges in school and in taekwondo.

Since the time Hersh started at four and half years old, Andrea Hersh, Lynnette’s mother, has observed the love Hersh has for her sport. “She tried ballet, gymnastics and swimming, but taekwondo was her favorite,” said Hersh. ”Taekwondo has been a constant in her life, a base, her second home.”  

Hersh is performing at the highest levels and walks away victorious from tournaments.

“Lynette trains with the adult class, so she is well prepared for competing with her age and belt division which is one of the most competitive groups in tournaments,” said Hersh’s mother.

Seeing she has been given much, Lynnette gives back to her second home working as a youth instructor, raising the next generation of great taekwondo fighters.

The next taekwondo tournament will be Nov. 12, 2016 in the bay area.

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