WATCH OUR Q&A WITH SAKURA
ABOUT SAKURA KOKOMAI
Individual athletes’ journeys to the Olympics are as unique as their careers.
SAKURA KOKUMAI TELLS HER STORY HERE:
I have been a kata karate athlete since I was seven. It is my way of life, and I fall in love with the sport all over again and again. At 14, I made the Junior National team and have been representing the USA on the Karate National Team ever since. Today, I am a ten-time Junior/Senior Pan American Champion, and four-time Junior and eight-time Senior USA National Champion. I always loved traveling to international events with my teammates, but as I got older, I started to set bigger goals for myself. I completed my Master’s in International Relations at Waseda University and started working.
Then, in August 2016, everything changed: karate became an Olympic sport for 2020. That is when I left my job. Currently, I am coaching myself. I found a sponsor in Panasonic. The Tokyo Olympics are my one shot at becoming the first Karate Olympic medallist, and I will not let it pass.