|Competitors wearing the new uniform compete during the test event at Makuhari Messe Hall in Chiba, Japan, Sept. 27. World Taekwondo (WT) announced Sunday (KST) that it adopted the uniform for next year's Tokyo Olympics. Courtesy of WT|
By Jung Min-ho
|Paulo Melo of Brazil wears the new uniform, which is tighter and more convenient with built-in protectors. Courtesy of WT|
After a WT council meeting in Moscow Sunday (KST), the global governing body for the sport announced that it approved a more practical uniform for the Summer Games (July 24-Aug 9).
The uniform, which was tested three months ago at the test event in the Japanese city of Chiba, is more breathable and convenient, with the built-in arm and shin protectors.
But WT said it will make minor design changes to the pants, which drew complaints about being "too tight." In the next few months, the WT will also determine their colors.
The colors of the top uniform will remain white and the head protectors red and blue.
In a recent interview with The Korea Times, WT President Choue Chung-won said the uniform will be used only for fight competition and will not entirely replace the traditional white one.
|Jang Jun, center, poses after being named the Athlete of the Year at the WT annual Gala Awards at Lotte Plaza Hotel in Moscow, Russia, Sunday (KST). Courtesy of WT|
Jang and Wongpattanakit named athletes of the year
At the WT annual Gala Awards in Moscow, Korea's Jang Jun and Panipak Wongpattanakit of Thailand were named male and female Athletes of the Year, respectively.
Both athletes have had the best year of their careers. While Jang won the Manchester World Taekwondo Championship as well as the Roma, Chiba and Sofia Grand Prix this year, Wongpattanakit won gold at the Manchester Championships and the Chiba Grand Prix.
Korea's In Kyo-don won the Kick of the Year award after an impressive display at the Manchester Championship.
"Congratulations to all our awardees this evening, whose performances and contributions over the course of this year have made them deserving winners of these prestigious awards," Choue said. "But tonight is not just about those who won awards; it is about everyone in our global taekwondo family. It is about all the athletes whose dedication inspires us and whose performances captivate us. It is about the coaches who work tirelessly to ensure that our athletes fulfill their enormous potential.
"It is about the referees who make sure our competitions are fair and practiced in the true spirit of friendship and respect. And it is about our Member National Association whose invaluable hard work, 365 days a year, makes our sport the global success that it is today."