Schoolboy overcomes cystic fibrosis challenge to become national taekwondo champion

A 10-year-old elementary school student is a national taekwondo champion and is aiming to win his third consecutive gold medal. Joshua Sherratt has managed to excel in the sport despite having cystic fibrosis, which can sometimes leave him out of breath or out of breath.

On the kickboxing mat, he focuses solely on his end goal and uses spins and high kicks to make his way to success. Parkmore Ormiston College students have won around 60 medals from a range of competitions.

Joshua, who lives in Packmoor, said: “I started kickboxing when I was two years old. It kept me fit and it was fun.

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“I train five times a week after school at Maddogs. I do three hours at a time. Then I go home and do my homework.

“I have to keep going. I want to be on the GB development team when I’m 13. Then there will be more in-house combinations.”

His ultimate dream is to represent Britain at the Olympics. Currently, Joshua is busy completing his athletic commitments in his final year of elementary school and will take his SAT after Easter.

Joshua Sherratt is a National Taekwondo Champion

“Taekwondo also helped me in school. The science is easy when you study everything about the body. Anyway, I look at exercise science. I know things like oxygen.”

His cystic fibrosis means he needs daily treatment. But Joshua added: “I’m just getting used to it. It’s not stress. I’m fine when I do kickboxing.”

He won gold at the British National Championships in 2019 and 2020. There were no races last year due to the pandemic, but the next one will be played later this year.

“It feels really good to win. The games are tough and I have about four games each.”

The furthest he ran was in the Netherlands, when he won the trophy at the Dutch Masters. Fortunately, these events take place on weekends or school holidays, so he doesn’t have to miss any lessons.

Joshua has a lot to do as his 13-year-old brother Alex is also a kickboxing champion. Alex, who studied at Ormiston Horizon Academy, has joined the GB development team.

Joshua's amazing dedication also earned him the Sports Champion Award from the Ormiston Academies Trust
Joshua’s amazing dedication also earned him the Sports Champion Award from the Ormiston Academies Trust

“He’s a four-time national champion. So I have to try to catch him,” Joshua said. The two support each other in the sport, but also have some friendly rivalry.

Joshua also has a black belt in Taekwondo and enjoys trail running. In honour of his achievement, he is now awarded a Sports Champions Award through Ormiston College Trust.

Packmoor Ormiston Academy Teaching Assistant Christine Sherpherd has also received the Trust’s Ecology Award for her numerous environmental projects for students.

Principal Sharon May said: “Joshua and Christine are exemplary members of the Packmoor community, their perseverance and determination inspiring students and staff. “

Support worker Janine Lees also saw the impact Joshua’s success had on his fellow students. “We’re so proud of him,” she said. “He never complained about his cystic fibrosis. He just took on all the challenges.”

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