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August Featured Fighter: Dom Jacobs

Posted on August 23, 2017

Dominic Jacobs, Substitute Coach

“At the end of the day, you’re the one in the ring. You’re the only one who can fight for you.”

While it’s true that you’re alone in the ring, Dom Jacobs also knows that it takes a family to get you there. His mother enrolled him in Taekwondo classes at just two years of age, and since that time we at Yi Sport have had the privilege to see him grow into a young man of exceptional character both on and off the mats. He is particularly skilled at coaching and mentoring younger fighters (his younger cousin Jayden wouldn’t dream of quitting because he know he’d have to answer to Dom!).

And Dom’s mother, Nanette – one of Yi Sport’s most passionate and long-time volunteers – instilled that sense of determination. “I am very thankful for her pushing me to practice and cross-train. She always talks to me about my confidence and tells me to never stop trying. If it weren’t for her pushing me, I wouldn’t be where I am today.”

And where did he get after over a decade of hard work and sacrifice? In 2015 Dom made the National USA Taekwondo team, taking home silver at Nationals and earning the opportunity to represent the US in Korea. That year he also won gold at AAU Regionals, gold at the Stanford Spring Open, and silver at the Washington State Championships.

2015 also just happened to be the year that USAT experimented with double eliminations at Nationals, which meant his trials lasted all day until three in the morning! While that sounds like a nightmare to your average teenager, for Dom, it was “the most amazing experience. The hardcore, nonstop fighting—I didn’t know I could do something like that. But that’s what Taekwondo teaches you: Don’t doubt yourself, never give up. It helps me control my emotions; it teaches me discipline and confidence and how to be a better person.”

Dom is now a Junior at Cleveland High School where he is a Varsity member of his school’s Ultimate Frisbee team. While he excels at this and several other sports, he credits Taekwondo with developing his mental strength. “Baseball, football, frisbee—they’re physically exerting, but you have your team members to raise you up if you’re having an off day. In Taekwondo, you’re by yourself, so mentally it’s completely different. Whoever has a stronger mind will end up on top, even if your opponent is physically bigger and stronger.”

Dom is excited about carrying that mental fortitude out into the world to make it a better place. His college hopes are focused on studying social justice and government. We have no doubt he’ll succeed at whatever he sets his mind to!