Nieky Holzken Hopes Martial Arts Can Inspire Family To Greatness

Nieky Holzken makes his ONE debut

There is nothing that motivates Nieky “The Natural” Holzken more than his family.

Being the best husband and father possible is the multi-time kickboxing world champion’s biggest driving force, and this pushes him to succeed in every area of his life.

Holkzen’s career – which will continue at ONE: CALL TO GREATNESS on 22 February – requires a lot of focus and often single-mindedness, but he could not achieve that without the close-knit unit he has around him.

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“Family is everything for me,” says 35-year-old Dutchman.

“I’ve been married 12 years, with a son of 12 and a daughter aged 8. I have good family around me – my head coach is my father-in-law, and my dad is always behind me.”

His highly successful competitive career provides for his young family, who reside in Helmond, Netherlands, and for that reason, he has never settled for anything less than being the best, as well as a constant evolution as a martial artist to keep him on top.

When his children, Geraldo and Willisha, were born, he was already an elite kickboxer on the European circuit – knocking on the door of the world stage.

Since then, he was inspired to work harder than ever and earned his route to international superstardom by securing multiple World Championships, including the Glory Welterweight World Title, and the WFCA K-1 World Title.

Nieky Holzken IMGL9217.jpg

“I wanted to make them proud and give them a good future,” Holzken explains.

“They are the drive, and why I’m still going strong.”

“The Natural’s” success makes him a role model for his children. His work ethic and discipline are qualities they can emulate and use in any area of life.

However, his son does not want to translate those attributes for use in another profession. He has chosen to follow in his father’s footsteps, and he is currently unbeaten in his burgeoning striking career at 12-0-1.

Holzken welcomed his son’s decision to step in the ring because martial arts training is a great vehicle for self-improvement, and it has strengthened their bond.

The only negative is the increase in blood pressure when Geraldo steps through the ropes to compete.

“It’s scary and stressful watching him compete, but that’s a dad thing,” he says.

“I like what he is doing. I teach him everything, but I let him walk his own path. I will always support him.

“It’s great that we have the same interest – he’s my best friend.”

The physical skills are not everything. For both his son and daughter, Holzken espouses the positive values of martial arts so that they can become good people, and positive members of society.

“The Natural” knows those attributes are important in all walks of life, but so is a dream. Though he will always encourage them to do the stay on the straight-and-narrow, he wants them to reach for the stars, too.

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“[You need to] teach them respect, to be humble, and to treat people like you want to be treated,” says the kickboxing superstar.

“Do good at school, and if you want to go for something, do everything for it.”

He is leading the way, and continues to chase his own dreams, buoyed by the support of his family and their support for his career. 

His next goal is to taste World Title gold in The Home Of Martial Arts, and to take another step towards that, he must get his hand raised again at ONE: CALL TO GREATNESS.

At the Singapore Indoor Stadium, “The Natural” will face off with Italy’s Mustapha “Dynamite” Haida in a ONE Super Series featherweight clash that promises to offer a tough test, as well as fireworks.

True to form, Holzken will be driven by his loved ones to score another highlight-reel knockout and continue his march on the global stage.

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