CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - At 15 years old, Rebecca Adams is already a decorated athlete. The heavyweight competitor in the World Taekwondo Federation junior division is ranked third in the nation by USA Taekwondo.
Adams has earned 17 gold medals in state and national championships so far in her career, among many other honors.
When Adams was young, she grew tired of playing soccer. So, she quit playing the sport and decided to take up taekwondo. Not only does she love the competition aspect of Taekwondo, but also the fact that she can help others grow through the game.
"Teaching the little kids, and how they do the things and when they get it right, or when they can accomplish it, it's really cool to watch," Adams said. "That goes into how you feel about yourself in everyday life and you can help the little kids out with their dreams, too."
Adams, a third-degree black belt, recently won the gold medal and the national team trial in her division at the American Taekwondo United National Championship in Atlanta, GA on June 2.
"The accomplishment for her at such a young age, she has a bright future in front of her. She's a go-getter... she also has nice grandparents and parents and they are 100 percent behind her," Grand Master Missy Cann said.
All the junior awards are great, but Adams has her eyes on the ultimate prize: the 2024 Olympic Games. In order to gear up for that, as well as all her current competitions, Adams has a rigorous training schedule, most notably with the Ivory Coast National Team in Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire.
"It's exciting, I keep telling her we get to live vicariously through her," Rebecca's mother, Adena Sherman-Adams, said. "She gets to fill her passport with these amazing places and go and dream and not many people get to fulfill their dreams."
Up next for Adams is the AAU Taekwondo National Tournament in Ft. Lauderdale in July.