What's your name, your age, where do you live ?
My name is Raquel Duque. I'm 34 years old. I live in Cambrils (Spain), a little town near the beach.
Which Martial Art do you do? What belt ?
I do Karate and I'm black belt, 3rd Dan.
List any titles or competitions you have won.
I've won some competition, but not many. Started competing late and left it very soon. I have some trophies home ... but I'm very bad at remembering dates!
Some of the most important is the European Champion in team kata in Shito Ryu European Championship, I remember that it was in 2007.
How many years of training ?
I started practicing karate when i was 9, and I am 34 ... Phew ... I just realized that I have a quarter of century kicking! hahaha
How many hours of training per week ?
Currently I train about 10h a week or so. More class time I teach.
Before of this, I spent three or four years away from the tatami and the dancefloor. My life turned gray, empty and sad. I was like a zombie walking aimlessly. One day I realized that I should return to my roots, which should return that way made me happy .... And here I am! Prepared to face whatever comes, ready to get up as many times as necessary and keep walking. And with a clear objective in my life: to never stop growing personally, spiritually.
Why did you start this sport ?
As a child, I loved toys guy, sports guy. I did not want to be a princess. I wanted to be a warrior. A day, walking down the street with my mother, I saw a group of children with karategi waiting at the door of a gym. I remember seeing them, I thought: I want to do that. And my mother took care of the rest!
Why do you like this sport ?
I love this sport because it brings me great physical and mental strength. It allows me to express, transform negative energy into positive energy you accumulate. Practicing karate balances me and that allows me to be happy.
What's your favorite technique?
I do not have a favorite technique. My favorite technique is the technique that is perfect. For a train, the flash of near-perfect execution can reach you with any technique. That look when I train, that those flashes almost perfect execution are becoming more abundant and intense.
Have you ever had to use your skills in self defence?
Fortunately, no. But karate has given me resources to avoid such situations and avoid physical confrontation.
Would you like to play in action/martial art movie ?
Why not? As long as in the movie appears a true picture of what real karate is. Always good to contribute to positive publicity of martial arts!
Do you have other hobbys ?
Yes Dancing! Dancing also makes me extremely happy. I teach a few hours a week of salsa and bachata. Karate feeds my inner warrior, dance feeds my inner princess.
Any advices to women who want to practise this sport ?
Generally, society tends to make us believe that we are only princesses. Karate will grow up your inner warrior. If you get both live in harmony there will be no limits, nothing can stop you and you will end up by becoming the best version of yourself.
Thank you very much raquel !