How N100,000 Opened Ajibade’s Way In Taekwondo | Independent Newspapers Limited
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How N100,000 Opened Ajibade’s Way In Taekwondo

Ajibade during training
Posted: May 1, 2016 at 3:00 am   /   by   /   comments (0)


Steve Oma-Ofozor

LAGOS – While many wait for government to come to the aid of sports some have taken the bull by the horn and are making a living from sport that seemed to be of no “commercial” value.

Adeola Medinat Ajibade, founder and instructor of Jibadex Taekwondo Academy, Lagos is one woman among a few that have found fortune in the sport in Nigeria where many school kids are presently training to make a career.

The academy, she said, was established in 2007 because of her passion for the game and to raise young ones as the game is lucrative for one to make a living.

The 24-year-old recalled starting the academy from the N100,000 reward she got as a secondary student for representing Ogun State in 2006 National Sports Festival (NSF) tagged, “Gateway Games” by the then Sports Commissioner, Bukola Olapade.

“Jibadex is my private academy which I established since 2007 at Ibeshe-Ikorodu, Lagos after Gateway Games to train kids from four years upwards. I have over 15 kids presently in that category.

“I ventured into this Taekwondo sport business because I have passion for the game; so I want to raise the young ones too because it is lucrative. One can make a career from it and become big like it is in other sports.

“The money opened the way for me,” she revealed.

Ajibade, a Mass Communication graduate and one of the Taekwondoists recently inaugurated as member of the Nigeria Taekwondo Black Belt College (NTBBC), added that she has introduced Taekwondo to four schools in Lagos where she train students and pupils aside Jibadex Academy.

However, to meet up with the standard required in the game, Ajibade a member of Taekwondo Coaches Association of Nigeria (TCA) attends regular training courses and seminars.

“I attend coaches’ seminars and general training. That is where we are thought new techniques and how to handle kids that are learning too,” she said.

As part of her successes so far, she was proud to say some of her students have participated in the Ibile and Dawn Games representing Lagos State:

Some of the athletes include Barakat Oyepade, Dawn Games 2014; Daniel Aremu, David Sunday and Ajibade Rofiq, Ibile 2014, while Roqiba Ajibade was in Ibile 2010.

On the rough edges however, she said that it was not an easy road to the point she is today, “It was so bad that at a point I could not even meet up with trainings, because I could not even raise transport money.”

She said that lack of funds had cost her the opportunity to participate in various tournaments at local and international levels.

“I have missed out of many title competitions, particularly the international ones which could have fetched some good money then. But, funding has been my major problem; no sponsor at all.”

But, for sheer passion and optimism she said, “I love Taekwondo with passion, which is why I did not succumb to the challenges I have been facing. As I speak, I can tell you things are changing for good for me in the game.”

It was on this note she appealed for sponsorship to make the academy bigger as she admonished parents, “Children should be allowed to combined sports with education and taekwondo is a choice sport.”