Vovinam Việt Võ Đạo – 13th Annual Championship Tournament – San Jose, CA

By Nhi Duong

Vovinam Việt Võ Đạo celebrated their 13th Annual Championship Tournament at Yerba Buena High School in San Jose, CA on August 3, 2013. Vovinam students from around the globe showed up to participate in this two-day competition.

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 000Vovinam students from as far as Belgium, Australia and Africa participated in this event.

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 004Our Hoa-Hau Ao-Dai, Tran Le Nguyen Minh helped out at this event by being one of the emcees. Unknown to many, she’s also a Vovinam student, holding a yellow belt. If you scroll all the way down, you’ll see her in her blue uniform, the official color of Vovinam.

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 001Vovinam was founded by Nguyen Loc (1912-1960). As a sign of respect, it’s customary for both students and instructors to bow to him once before beginning their routine.

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 005The Vovinam students from Dallas, Texas.

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 006The Vovinam students from Salem, Oregon.

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 007The Vovinam students from Los Angeles, California.

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 008The Vovinam students from San Jose, California.

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 002Vovinam was originated in Vietnam in 1938 and has been established in many countries around the world. Today, Vovinam students from around the globe gathered under one roof to compete in this annual championship tournament.

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 016They warm up first.

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 009These are the instructors. You can tell by looking at the color of their belts.

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 011Is it a coincidence that the head master closely resembles Mr. Miyagi? Here he is paying respect to the founder of Vovinam, Mr. Nguyen Loc.

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 015All the students sat and listened patiently while different people spoke at the podium.

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 021The National Anthem was sung in both Vietnamese and English. Singer Trung Kien sung it in Vietnamese; whereas, Jenny Dan Anh sung it in English.

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 023The award ceremony.

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 025This student gets a new belt as he advanced one level up. In Vovinam, the color of your belt is not only an indication of your rank but also who you are. For example, blue and yellow are reserved for students of all levels. Red is for instructors. In addition to color, the markings at the end of the belt further indicate ranking within that color.

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 026Vovinam spared no expense making personalized name tags. That way you get to know the name of all your brothers and sisters. Here’s Richard Nguyen (from Dallas, Texas) receiving his certified second degree black belt from the Vovinam Belgium Master.

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 029San Jose Council Member, Kansen Chu and his wife, Daisy, posing with our Hoa-Hau. He was given a honorary scroll for his participation. He’s running for California State Assembly 2014. Can’t you tell?

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 032The Vovinam students from Africa suprised Master Cam Binh with a new outfit.

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 033Each training center received their own honorary scroll to bring back with them.

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 034The Masters receive the gift of time.

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 035Master Cam Binh also received her own scroll.

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 037Singer Trung Kien accepted his gift from Master Cam Binh. Now he’ll never lose track of time.

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 042They warm up a second time.

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 043Let the competition begin.

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 049Singer Trung Kien and Hoa-Hau Ao-Dai 2013, Tran Le Nguyen Minh.

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 050From Hoa-Hau Ao-Dai to Vovinam student, Minh does it both with ease and grace.

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Vovinam Viet Vo Dao - 13th Annual Tournament - Yerba Buena High School - Image 055If you are interested in learning Vovinam and you’re in the San Jose area, here’s all the information you need to get started.

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Video by thePHAMers

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Video by Mason Phan

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Video by David Su

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Video by Mason Phan

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Video by Mason Phan

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