PINELLAS PARK, Fla. — On Saturday, American MMA in Pinellas Park held a seminar for kickboxers of all ages.
In attendance was Rob Zbilski, the President of the World Association of Kickboxing Organizations. He is scouting fighters right now for Team USA Kickboxing. The sport is now recognized by the Olympics as an olympic sport.
"This is a region that we're trying to develop and get more fighters from," said Zbilski.
American MMA is owned by David Bybee. His son, Austin, is 16 years old and already holds a state title.
“Now I’m ranked No. 2 in North America,” said Austin. He went on to say, “I’m getting this amateur record down, I want to get good experience, and I want to go pro before I’m 20.”
He trains with his dad at the gym. Right now he’s getting ready for another fight in a few weeks. He’s hoping to take home a third belt.
“Stepping in the ropes, fighting, is my biggest fear and I conquer it every single time,” said Austin.
“I can only teach him and show him the way, then I have to rely on him to go out there and do what he has to do,” said David.
David will help coach the Olympic kickboxing team. Throughout the coming months, they’ll be traveling to find fighters for the team.
“I am extremely excited. It is an honor,” said Bybee.