The journey to becoming a World Champion is never easy. Without the support of those around you, an already-arduous road can be even more overwhelming.
Fortunately for ONE Kickboxing Atomweight World Champion “Killer Bee” Kai Ting Chuang, she could always rely on her grandparents.
When she makes her first World Title defense at ONE: KINGDOM OF HEROES in Bangkok, Thailand on Saturday, 6 October, they might not be in her corner physically, but they will be with her in spirit.
From abandoned child to World Champion, this is the inspirational story of Kai Ting Chuang.Bangkok | 6 October | 5.30PM | LIVE and FREE on the ONE Super App: http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast | Tickets: http://bit.ly/oneheroes18
Posted by ONE Championship on Monday, September 24, 2018
The two elders have been the most consistent source of love in the kickboxing star’s life.
They adopted the youngster after her parents divorced and abandoned her in an orphanage while she was still a baby. Chuang’s grandparents immediately went down to the children’s home to officially adopt her.
“Blood is thicker than water,” says her grandmother, Liu Ying In, on the huge decision to raise their granddaughter in their humble abode.
“I knew I had to take her home and raise her, because she is my granddaughter.”
Liu was Chuang’s primary caregiver growing up, and she has been one of the biggest influences on her success. The safety and comfort she cultivated at home allowed “Killer Bee” to feel secure, all while allowing her to pursue her own road in life.
“I felt very happy and safe,” the World Champion offers.
“My grandmother is very kind with a warm heart. With time, as I got older and older, she also tried to let go and give me space.”
Kai Ting shares the belt with her two biggest supporters Bangkok | 6 October | 5:30PM | LIVE and FREE on the ONE Super App: http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast | Tickets: http://bit.ly/oneheroes18
Posted by ONE Championship on Tuesday, September 25, 2018
At age 16, the kickboxing prodigy began her martial arts journey, partly to take some of the financial burden off her grandparents. She believed it was a surefire pathway to a university scholarship. That came to fruition thanks to her hard work, dedication, and talent.
“Killer Bee” initially kept her combat sports endeavors a secret from her loved ones, because she did not want to worry them and cause them any stress.
“In the beginning, she lied to me about it. She told me she was working out in school,” Liu recalls.
“Her teachers often talked about signing up for competition, but I didn’t have a clue back then. I found out later that they were talking about boxing.
“I went to see her match once in her school, and then I realized, ‘Okay, it has been boxing all the time.’ I didn’t think about her winning or losing. I only wished that she didn’t get hurt.”
Chuang remembers trying to ease her grandmother’s concerns once she found out.
“She was worried at the beginning, since I am a girl,” the Chinese striker says. ”But she trusted me a lot. When I told her I will protect myself, she felt more relaxed.”
The night a new World Champion was born. Bangkok | 6 October | 5:30PM | LIVE and FREE on the ONE Super App: http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast | Tickets: http://bit.ly/oneheroes18
Posted by ONE Championship on Wednesday, September 26, 2018
In a turbulent world, “Killer Bee” needed that soothing influence.
Even today as a titleholder in the world’s largest martial arts organization, there is nothing better than returning home to relax the mind and get a little extra encouragement.
“When I go back home and talk with her, it can bring me calm and inner peace,” she says. “It also gives me motivation.”
Solid foundations have been the bedrock of a successful career in the ring. Chuang’s childhood could have been a turbulent one, had her grandparents not stepped in when they did. Instead, they did everything in their power to raise a strong, determined young woman, and now it is paying dividends.
The values Liu instilled in her granddaughter remain a key part of who she is, whether there is a World Championship around her waist or not.
“Killer Bee” knows she will forever be in their debt, but to her grandparents, her happiness is enough.
“I wish I could give her the world, but I can’t,” the 23-year-old says of the woman who raised her. “I just need to do my daily training and give my best each fight. I know she is proud of me.”
Not only are her grandmother and grandfather proud of her, but they completely support Chuang in all of her endeavors.
“It hasn’t been easy for Kai Ting to grow up, and learning martial arts is not easy either. But she finds joy amid the hardship,” Liu says. “As long as she is happy, I just wish her a beautiful life.”