Bloomington hosts Taekwando regional tourney

By WEEK Producer

July 28, 2012 Updated Jul 28, 2012 at 8:09 PM CDT

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. -- One of the country's largest youth martial arts tournaments is being held in Bloomington this weekend.

Game Time Gym II is hosting the American Taekawando Association regionals.

Over a thousand competitors are scheduled to hit the mat, some traveling from as far away as Florida and Nevada.

Tournament host Corey Coffrin says the people who take up the martial art of Taekwando do so for many different reasons.

"Parents like to get their children involved because they want to increase self-discipline and self-confidence and to build the children's self-esteem," explained Coffrin. "Adults get involved for various other reasons, it might be self-defense, it might be physical fitness."

Coffrin attributes some of the increasing popularity of Taekwando to the exposure it receives as an Olympic sport.