HALYNA MELNYK aims for gold and peace

Halyna Melnyk, like all other Ukrainians, has had her life turned upside down. Kampsportnews took a short chat with her about her situation and the sporting goal.

The Ukrainian took her first steps onto the carpet as a seven-year-old. One of her friends had tried karate and asked her to come along.

– After the first training, I fell in love with the sport.

Her career has gone straight up and, since the age of fourteen, she has been part of the Ukrainian national team.

During last year’s world championships, Halyna managed to pinch a bronze medal.

Are you happy with the third place or are you disappointed that you did not win?

– I am happy with the bronze medal but it is clear that it could have been better.

What is the goal for this year?

– This year’s goal is the World Games held in the USA. It is the first time in my career that I will participate in such an important event and it is clear that I want to do my best.

Do you have a competitor that you look forward to defeating?

– Over the years, I have practically beaten everyone in my division.

Halyna is one of several athletes who are part of Team Budo-Nord.

How did you get in touch with them and how is your relationship?

– It was through my teammate Stanislav Horuna. I discovered that they are the best team for me and thanks to them I feel really good during my battles on the tatami.

I ask her if she has had any setbacks during her career.

– Of course there have been moments when I have wanted to quit but I have continued to train and set clear goals. I have always received support from my coach and my loved ones. It has given me strength and confidence.

Can you support yourself on karate or do you have a side job?

– At the moment, karate is not only my sport and hobby, it is also my job as I am part of the Ukrainian army’s sports group.

When asked if she looks up to any other athletes, she answers that there are many good ones she likes to follow but that no one has left a clear mark on her.

– First and foremost, I want to show myself that I can be the best in the sport I love.

How has your life changed since the war began?

– The tragic events of February 24 changed the lives of all Ukrainians. It is very difficult to talk about because the war is scary. You do not understand what is happening and why. Anger is born within you because human life is the most important thing. I just want the war to end as soon as possible.

Halyna has, despite the current war, chosen to stay and train in Lviv.

– It is my hometown and I believe in the victory of my country. I live with Ukraine in my heart.

She continues:

– I train at the club Union, which is considered one of Ukraine’s foremost and has created many international karate champions. All training takes place with our trainer Anton Nikulin. I feel lucky to be part of the team.

How much time do you spend training?

– During the week I train Monday to Friday, twice a day. On the weekends I rest, get massages and do rehab as injuries are frequent in my sport.

Read more about Stanislav Horuna

Read about Alexandra Haag’s hunt for noble medals

Also read about The Ukrainian Karate Federation

Tomas Loman

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