Competition for Team USA Taekwondo kicked off today at the World University Games with the Taekwondo Poomsae event.  Competing on the day were Rene Chen, who represented the US in the women's individual category, and Ryan Lien, who represented the US in the men's individual competition.  The caliber of the competition was very high, with many former world championships medalists in the draw.

Rene Chen (Rhode Island School of Design, Medford, MA, women's individual) competed in the preliminaries, performing Taeguek 5 and Taeguek 6.  Chen was 11th in the standings going into the semifinals, where she performed Taeguek 8 and Koryo, which bumped her up to an impressive 6th place going into the finals.  In the finals, Chen performed Keumgang and Taebaek.  A couple of missteps on Keumgang dropped her to an overall finish of 8th place, but it was an impressive run and the best result for a US female individual poomsae competitor at a world collegiate event.

The other person to go today was Ryan Lien (Mt. San Antonio College, San Gabriel, CA, men's individual), our men's individual.  He had a tough draw and had to go first but performed well regardless.  Lien advanced to the semifinals with Taeguek 7 and 8, but placed 16th in the semis with Koryo and Keumgang, and didn't advance to the finals.

Competition continues tomorrow with the women's team poomsae, men's team poomsae and mixed pair poomsae divisions.

See the photo gallery.
Watch the event live at

-- Dan Chuang, Poomsae Coach