It’s not precisely commonplace for a nurse to spend her time kicking and punching other folks – however then Adaeze Efobi is not any unusual medic.
The 34-year-old may just but head to the Olympics to constitute Nigeria in taekwondo, a game by which she hopes to encourage each off and on the mat.
Efobi fell in love with taekwondo whilst gazing it on tv elderly seven, however didn’t be able to compete till she used to be 22.
”I advised my oldsters I used to be thinking about taekwondo however again then they believed martial arts have been one of those hooliganism,” Efobi advised BBC Recreation Africa.
“I performed basketball and soccer and in addition participated in race strolling whilst in secondary faculty.”
Born and taken up in Lagos, it used to be handiest as soon as Efobi used to be settled at Ebonyi State College, the place she used to be learning for a nursing level, that she used to be in a position to understand a youth dream.
“In my 2nd yr, my classmates have been having a soccer fit with every other elegance. I simply regarded throughout and noticed a gaggle of scholars doing taekwondo, dressed in their dobok [uniform] and their belts,” Efobi remembered.
“I went to their coaching consultation, did the specified bureaucracy and began. I discovered that the eagerness I had on the gentle age of 7 used to be nonetheless there.”
Now each a certified nurse and taekwondo trainer, Efobi believes the game has helped her in existence, specifically relating to willpower.
“Rising up as a kid, I may just now not categorical myself however I needed to go through numerous coaching to right kind that,” she stated.
“I realized that mature other folks use their mouth, they do not use their palms. That is self-discipline, and I began making it section and parcel of my existence.
“I’m a greater particular person if I examine myself now to how I used to be earlier than. Breaking via the ones limitations, I noticed myself doing positive issues that amazed me and my circle of relatives after they discovered that I used to be doing taekwondo.”
Bringing nursing into taekwondo
Nigerian taekwondo grandmaster Ferguson Oluigbo believes Efobi has an edge over fellow combatants given her background in nursing.
“I’m having a look at an afternoon she is going to pass with the nationwide crew to the Olympics – now not simply as a colleague however as a scientific knowledgeable,” Oluigbo stated.
“She will compete and she or he could also be going to be at the floor aiding the scientific crew. She understands what’s going to occur for your leg if you end up doing taekwondo – other from a nurse or a physician who does now not know anything else about sports activities.
“She goes to mention ‘no, that factor you might be touching isn’t the ache, that is the place the ache is coming from’ as a result of she understands it.”
Oluigbo is an skilled instructor of Olympians, having been a number of the instructors who helped Chika Chukwumerije win a bronze medal on the 2008 Beijing Video games.
Efobi, in the meantime, has received a number of middleweight titles and hopes to turn into nationwide champion in her elegance.
She additionally competes in poomsae – a non-combat model of the martial artwork the place you run via a chain of strikes and assaults – and instructs at a Pan African Martial Arts World (Panamai) faculty, the place she will be able to mix the 2 issues she loves maximum.
“I’m following my interest, which is being a taekwondo trainer, however I’m bringing nursing into taekwondo – I set up accidents throughout taekwondo coaching,” she stated.
“I imagine being a nurse is having the ability to assist other folks and also you would not have to paintings within the medical institution to assist other folks. I will be able to paintings in an organization, a gymnasium or anyplace I wish to.
“Because the pronouncing is going, do what makes you satisfied; I like nursing and I’ve a robust interest for taekwondo.”
Saving lives and construction a legacy
Efobi works as a cellular nurse and remembers one specific incident that had a profound affect on her need to assist others.
“I used to be getting back from treating a kid and there used to be this motorcyclist who have been hit via a automobile,” she stated.
“I witnessed the incident and I used to be in the course of other folks, pushing them again, seeking to lead them to now not contact him.
“I used to be speaking to him, reassuring him, checking for damaged bones. He used to be bleeding.
“My thoughts used to be in chaos. It used to be like ‘he is bleeding, you would not have gloves’. However I needed to save his existence.
“What I did used to be dangerous. Preferably, I should not be touching frame fluids with out gloves. I simply needed to improvise, took clothes, tore it and demobilised the web site.
“He had a fracture. I moved it slightly to tie the limbs in combination. Any other passers-by and I took him to the closest medical institution. I’m satisfied the person lived to look every other day.”
Efobi hopes her blended existence studies can resonate in every single place as she encounters a various vary of sufferers in her nursing profession and trains other folks from white belt to black belt in taekwondo.
“After all, I wish to have a legacy the place some day we in our Panamai faculties in West Africa will all come in combination to look all of the masters and grandmasters the organisation has produced,” she stated.
“I see us sitting down and everyone in an image. It is a factor of pleasure.”