11 year old Joel Westbrook isn't letting spina bifida keep him from being a Karate Kid.
Tue, 10 Apr 2018 23:14:14 +0000Karate Kid11 year old Joel Westbrook isn't letting spina bifida keep him from being a Karate Kid.http://chic.clipsyndicate.com/video/playlist/12833/7330390?cpt=8&wpid=2637WDEF CBS Chattanooga, TNovercoming his disabilities with karate. news 12's angela moryan talked to him today. angela, what's his secret? the secret is never saying "i can't." it's actually banned in the dojo. joel westbrook has not allowed his disability to limit his dreams. in fact, he's won eight consecutive gold medals -- most recently at the u.s. karate open. nats: 11-year-old joel westbrook wanted to be just like the characters on disney's kickin' it. there was just one problem... joel was born with spina bifida. wendy westbrook/mom: "he had it in his mind that he wanted to do karate, and i was like no, no let's don't do karate, what else can we do? no. but just karate, karate, karate. so he stuck with it." and it stuck with him! joel beat a thirty year old in las vegas april 1 for the gold at the u.s. karate open. angie: how'd you feel when you won that gold medal? joel: yeah! sensei corey green helps joel learn karate movements and adapt them to his wheelchair. green: "i even got in the chair one day and tried it, and boy, does he have talent. laughs 'cause i tried it and i was like man, it's really hard to make this chair straight when you want it to go straight." joel joins ryan rogers, a renowned austic karate athlete from green's dojo. green: "they're inspiring people that make them believe in themselves no matter what you have going on in your life, you can accomplish great things. you just have to have that perservence and determination and discipline to follow through." the next big goal is paris in 2024 -- where karate is expected to make its paraolympic debut. wendy: "i guess 2024 in paris, that would put that french class to good use that i took in high school, right?" wendy told me she picked the name joel becuase it means strong-willed. she hoped that he would live up to the name, and i think it's safe to say he has. what a great story! did they teach you any moves while you were there? actually, yes! ryan took me through some combinations. i think we have some footage here... coming up next on prime news at