Quest’s Black Belt of the month is — Cyrilla Zhang. A quiet young lady who’s always focused on whatever she’s doing, whether it’s taekwondo or assisting the younger students with their forms and drills. Cyrilla has an almost pensive disposition, who seems to already know what she wants in life, mature in her speech, aware of what’s expected of her and more importantly, she will deliver.

A Fight Team member, a 2nd Dan Black Belt, a Leadership awardee… Let’s get to know more of Cyrilla.


How old are you now and at what age did you start taekwondo? —  “I am 12 years old and I started taekwondo at age 7.”


What is it that you like about taekwondo and what is your ultimate goal as a taekwondo athlete?— “I really like both the physical and mental training in taekwondo. My goal would be to just train hard and see how far I can go.”

Tell us about a peak moment in taekwondo, one that you are especially proud of and will never forget. — “When I got my first-degree black belt, I felt very accomplished. All the training as a color belt had led up to becoming one, and then it finally happened!”


In all the tournaments you have competed in, what match stands out the most for you that you would consider as the most challenging one? — “I think that the first tournament I have ever been to was the hardest. Not only was I new to sparring, I (a green belt) was paired up with an experienced blue belt and got quite beat up.”


Other than being a multi-medalist in sparring, please share with us your other accomplishments outside of taekwondo. — “I got a President’s Education Awards Program in school and I am a nominee for the California Tek Trek program.”

And that is quite an achievement. Tech Trek is a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) camp designed to develop interest, excitement, and self-confidence in young women who will enter eighth grade in the fall.

What advice would you give a beginner student who wants to be a black belt someday? — “Just keep going. Even if you’re tired and don’t want to train, making yourself go will be beneficial for the future.”

What is your favorite school subject and what do you like about it? — “I like science because it’s a very logical subject and there’s always something new to discover.”

What are Cyrilla’s favorite things? — “Lasagna, taekwondo, sleeping, road trips and snow.” 

How about pet peeves…what are things you just dislike? — “For some reason, I really don’t like ticking noises. It gives me anxiety when I hear it.”

If you were a fictional character who or what would you be and why that character? — “I would want to be Spider-Man because I’ve always wondered what it would be like to shoot a web and then swing around a city.”

 Please finish this sentence: “Most people don’t know that … . I was born in Canada.”

Canadian, EH?

If your friends and family were to describe you, what adjectives would they use? — “Stable, calm, stubborn and kind.”

If there is one famous person you could spend the whole day with, who would that be, and what would you talk about? “I would probably spend the day with Sandra Oh and I would ask her about her acting career and how she became an actor.”

What do you think is the #1 thing that young people these days should learn as they’re growing up? —“Sometimes trying to be “cool” is harmful. It’s better being safe than sorry.”

What words of wisdom can you share with other young ladies your age? — “It doesn’t have to be taekwondo, but it’s never too late to start a sport. Exercising can be surprisingly fun and healthy.”

Lastly, tell us about your most important wish at this moment. Maybe someone who’s reading this (like Mom and Dad) can make that come true for you. Right now I don’t have a super important wish other than doing well in taekwondo and school, but I do really want to get a pet iguana.

And there you have it… Cyrilla: Up close and personal, and her pet Iguana. The rarity of her choice of pet is confounding; but again she is part of this special generation who sees the beauty in every creature. 

Considering that taekwondo is a very physical sport and aggressiveness is one of its driving factors, the quietness and serenity in Cyrilla will surely help her guard herself against her opponents, whether in the ring or just the challenges that come with growing up. These are very rare traits for a girl of 12, but then again, Cyrilla is no ordinary girl!

We have another outstanding Black Belt to feature next month, so please check in or subscribe to our blogs. If you’re in the South Bay area, swing by Quest Taekwondo and watch these amazing athletes train. We have every taekwondo and fitness program to suit every age group and physical profile. Check out our home page for new promotions and offers.

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