Norway took senior honours at the 2024 European Taekwon-Do Championships. NATIONALTAEKWON-DONORWAY/Facebook

The Norwegian team dominated the 38th European Taekwon-Do Championships 2024 at the Medical University of Lublin in Poland. Slovenia and Ireland completed the podium in a tournament with a record number of participants.

The European Taekwon-Do Championships came to an end on Sunday in Lublin, south-east Poland. Norway, who led for most of the senior tournament except for when Romania took the lead on the second day, won the 38th edition of the European Championships for the martial art born in South Korea almost seven decades ago.

The Norwegians took the gold medals from the start of the Sunday session. Mats Lind (2nd Dan) and Lars Tønder (3rd Dan) won the men's singles, while Helene Mb won the women's 70-75kg singles.

Lind and Tønder won the male pattern team title along with Theo Lægreid Loodtz, Ingebrigt Steinkjer, Emil Kristensen and Zaniar Kiyani. The female pattern team also finished with the Norwegian national anthem being played thanks to Ann Linnea Hole, Marte Blegen, Tina Katrin Holten, Rita Moseng Sivertsvik, Solveig Lund Haukebø and Jenny Marvel Listhaug. Selma Li had won her gold medal in the Individual Female Pattern 2nd Dan on Saturday.

In the afternoon, the Scandivanians added four more medals although none of them were gold. However, the excellent performance in the morning session saw them finish on top with six gold, eight silver and five bronze medals.

Slovenia finished second with four golds, two silvers and one bronze, followed by Ireland with nine medals, to just one silver. Ziga Zagoranski won gold for Slovenia in the men's 57-63kg, while Bian Nabernik won the 63-69kg. Urša Terdin won the women's 65-70kg and was part of the winning Slovenian sparring team which also included Tina Baloh, Elizabeta Crnkovic, Tyra Barada, Maša Kenjalo and Larisa Žagar-Slemešek.

Hosts Poland won the most medals overall with 20, but their tally of three gold medals meant they missed out on the podium. They had to settle for fourth place ahead of Romania who also won three golds from their 15 medals.

Italy, the clear champions in terms of fan support, finished a modest 10th thanks to Giovanni Vitiello 1st Dan's gold in the Individual Male Pattern and five other medals, celebrated with rousing chants from their delegation.

In the junior categories, the Polish National Team (nine+five+ten) was crowned champion of the 29th AETF Junior European Taekwon-Do Championships 2024, followed by Ukraine (seven+four+three) and Ireland (three+five+five) who completed the podium. Ukraine won the 1st AETF Pre-Junior European Taekwon-Do Championships 2024 with 23 medals (nine+five+nine), followed by Romania (five+five+six) and Poland (3+5+4)

It was an excellent opportunity to see some of the world's best taekwondo practitioners who will also be present at the 2024 World Championships in Mar del Plata, at the end of October and beginning of November.

Nearly 840 competitors enjoyed five days of camaraderie and love for the martial art in a packed stadium. Officials took advantage of the event to build relationships and further develop European Taekwondo during their stay in Lublin, while also enjoying the high level of competition on display in the six rings of the Lublin Medical University Stadium.

From the European Congress, attended by 32 delegates, to proposals for constitutional changes to align with the International Taekwondo Federation (ITF), to attempts to merge federations in countries with more than one representation, to the enjoyment of a very well organised tournament from start to finish by the Polish federation, the European Taekwon-Do Championships proved to be a great success.