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Aaron Cobley

Aaron Cobley.

18-year-old Taekwondo player Aaron, from Chesterfield, suffered a big injury in December 2016 breaking his femur and putting his sport career in jeopardy. Since then Aaron has worked incredibly hard with sports physiotherapist and his coaches to regain his former ability.

Despite this setback Aaron has made an incredible comeback and has just returned from the WKU World Kickboxing championships in Kerry Ireland. Aaron in the -70kg light continuous sparring division dominated the preliminary rounds stopping 2 matches with a devastating back kick, leading to meeting Canada in the final and bringing home the gold medal.

Aaron won a further gold in light continuous team event, silver in -70kg kumate sparring and silver in Adult team kumate sparring.

Aaron will soon travel to Holland with Heart of England Taekwondo team to take part in the ITF open World Championships (his first international event as an adult competitor).

Aaron said in 2016: "I have been involved in martial arts since the age of six when I started to learn ITF Taekwondo and now do both kickboxing and Taekwondo

I am currently in both sports a second dan black belt and hope to grade for my third dan over the next couple years. I train almost daily in either sport or help teach. I currently train with my own Taekwondo instructor for 2.5 hours a week and also weekly attend the elite training programme.

"This is a intense training session for selected talented students who demonstrate commitment and dedication to the sport, compete at national and international level, train/practice at home and support fund raising events.

"Once a month, I attend the WKU England kick boxing training squad session in Margate. Over the last year I have started to deliver my own kick boxing lessons to all ages and abilities as well as help coach at my kick boxing club.

"I started to compete from the age ofeight8 and since age 12 compete internationally in both disciplines. I have over the years won many titles including British.

"I am the current UITF European and World Taekwondo Champion, having won two golds, a silver and a bronze in the world championships 2015 and in 2016 two golds and a bronze in the European championships in Poland.

"I have also represented England at the WKU world championships and competed in Spain 2015 winning two golds,a silver and a bronze. This year I have represented and been part of the England Kick boxing team in Germany, winning two golds, and in the USA at the World championships, where I again became a world champion with a gold and bronze medal.

"My ambition is to be the best I can be so I will continue to work on my stamina, flexibility and techniques.

"Next August, I will be 18 and I hope to be selected for the next UITF Taekwondo World Championships, but will have to compete as an adult. To prepare for this, and despite being a junior competitor, I intend to compete at regional and national competitions as an adult.

"I have already started to do this and this September competed in the UITF English Taekwondo DChampionships in the four events of sparring, special technique and destruction. I won gold in -70kg sparring, ga gold and silver in patterns, gold in special technique and bronze in destruction. I will also represent England in kickboxing in Germany and Ireland at the next World Championships.

"The ICON bursary has enabled me to continue to train and helped with travel, training and competition fees and I am extremely thankful to Derbyshire Sport."