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Osan Airman embraces "Art of Eight Limbs"

Senior Airman James Turner, 51st Maintenance Group aircraft metal technology journeyman, kicks Grand Master Myong Chae Kim, during a sparring session with June 18, 2012. Turner is currently at in intermediate level, still honing his skills and perfecting his craft with the intent of someday competing professionally in a grand prix tournament. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Adam Grant)

Senior Airman James Turner, 51st Maintenance Group aircraft metal technology journeyman, kicks Grand Master Myong Chae Kim, during a sparring session at Osan Air Base, Republic of Korea, June 18, 2012. Turner is currently at in intermediate level, still honing his skills and perfecting his craft with the intent of someday competing professionally in a grand prix tournament. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Adam Grant)

Senior Airman James Turner, 51st Maintenance Group aircraft metal technology journeyman, prepares to punch during a sparring session with Grand Master Myong Chae Kim, June 18, 2012. Kim has 30 years of experience and has trained more than 500 airmen, five of whom have competed at national level. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Adam Grant)

Senior Airman James Turner, 51st Maintenance Group aircraft metal technology journeyman, prepares to punch during a sparring session with Grand Master Myong Chae Kim at Osan Air Base, Republic of Korea, June 18, 2012. Kim has 30 years of experience and has trained more than 500 airmen, five of whom have competed at national level. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Adam Grant)

Senior Airman James Turner, 51st Maintenance Group aircraft metal technology journeyman, practices kicking while sparring with Grand Master Myong Chae Kim, June 18, 2012. Kim has 30 years of experience and has trained more than 500 airmen, five of whom have competed at national level. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Adam Grant)

Senior Airman James Turner, 51st Maintenance Group aircraft metal technology journeyman, practices kicking while sparring with Grand Master Myong Chae Kim at Osan Air Base, Republic of Korea, June 18, 2012. Kim has 30 years of experience and has trained more than 500 airmen, five of whom have competed at national level. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Adam Grant)

Senior Airman James Turner, 51st Maintenance Group aircraft metal technology journeyman, does routine cool-down exercises June 18, 2012. Turner is currently at in intermediate level, still honing his skills and is perfecting his craft with the intent of someday competing professionally in a grand prix tournament. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Adam Grant)

Senior Airman James Turner, 51st Maintenance Group aircraft metal technology journeyman, does routine cool-down exercises at Osan Air Base, Republic of Korea, June 18, 2012. Turner is currently at in intermediate level, still honing his skills and is perfecting his craft with the intent of someday competing professionally in a grand prix tournament. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Adam Grant)

Senior Airman James Turner, 51st Maintenance Group aircraft metal technology journeyman, practices kneeing while sparring with Grand Master Myong Chae Kim, June 18, 2012. Kim has 30 years of experience and has trained more than 500 airmen, five of whom have competed at national level. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Adam Grant)

Senior Airman James Turner, 51st Maintenance Group aircraft metal technology journeyman, practices kneeing while sparring with Grand Master Myong Chae Kim at Osan Air Base, Republic of Korea, June 18, 2012. Kim has 30 years of experience and has trained more than 500 airmen, five of whom have competed at national level. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Adam Grant)

Senior Airman James Turner, 51st Maintenance Group aircraft metal technology journeyman, punches a punching bag before sparring June 18, 2012. Muay Thai kickboxing is a combative sport from Thailand that uses stand-up striking along with various clinching techniques similar to other Indochinese kickboxing systems. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Adam Grant)

Senior Airman James Turner, 51st Maintenance Group aircraft metal technology journeyman, punches a punching bag before sparring at Osan Air Base, Republic of Korea, June 18, 2012. Muay Thai kickboxing is a combative sport from Thailand that uses stand-up striking along with various clinching techniques similar to other Indochinese kickboxing systems. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Adam Grant)

Senior Airman James Turner, 51st Maintenance Group aircraft metal technology journeyman, kicks a punching bag before sparring June 18, 2012. Muay Thai kickboxing is a combative sport from Thailand that uses stand-up striking along with various clinching techniques similar to other Indochinese kickboxing systems. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Adam Grant)

Senior Airman James Turner, 51st Maintenance Group aircraft metal technology journeyman, kicks a punching bag before sparring at Osan Air Base, Republic of Korea, June 18, 2012. Muay Thai kickboxing is a combative sport from Thailand that uses stand-up striking along with various clinching techniques similar to other Indochinese kickboxing systems. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Adam Grant)

Senior Airman James Turner, 51st Maintenance Group aircraft metal technology journeyman, wraps his wrist before sparring June 18, 2012. Muay Thai kickboxing is a combative sport from Thailand that uses stand-up striking along with various clinching techniques similar to other Indochinese kickboxing systems. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Adam Grant)

Senior Airman James Turner, 51st Maintenance Group aircraft metal technology journeyman, wraps his wrist before sparring at Osan Air Base, Republic of Korea, June 18, 2012. Muay Thai kickboxing is a combative sport from Thailand that uses stand-up striking along with various clinching techniques similar to other Indochinese kickboxing systems. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Adam Grant)

Senior Airman James Turner, 51st Maintenance Group aircraft metal technology journeyman, performs agility drills with a tire before sparring June 18, 2012. Turner has been participating in Muay Thai at the Moo Bong Gym for about three months and goes there five times a week for two hours per session. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Adam Grant)

Senior Airman James Turner, 51st Maintenance Group aircraft metal technology journeyman, performs agility drills with a tire before sparring at Osan Air Base, Republic of Korea, June 18, 2012. Turner has been participating in Muay Thai at the Moo Bong Gym for about three months and goes there five times a week for two hours per session. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Adam Grant)

Senior Airman James Turner, 51st Maintenance Group aircraft metal technology journeyman, jumps rope before sparring June 18, 2012. Turner has been participating in Muay Thai at the Moo Bong Gym for about three months and goes there five times a week for two hours per session. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Adam Grant)
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Senior Airman James Turner, 51st Maintenance Group aircraft metal technology journeyman, jumps rope before sparring at Osan Air Base, Republic of Korea, June 18, 2012. Turner has been participating in Muay Thai at the Moo Bong Gym for about three months and goes there five times a week for two hours per session. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Adam Grant)

OSAN AIR BASE, Republic of Korea -- Participating in a combative sport widely referred to as the "Art of Eight Limbs" might seem intimidating.

Senior Airman James Turner, on the other hand, embraces a fighting technique using combinations of punches, kicks, elbows and knee strikes to subdue an opponent. Muay Thai kickboxing is a sport from Thailand that blends stand-up striking along with various clinching techniques, similar to other Indochinese kickboxing systems.

"Hard work beats talent when talent fails to work hard," said the 24-year-old Louisville, Ky., native during a recent training workout, which consisted of jumping rope, stretching, sparring, hitting the punching bag and cooling down.

Turner has studied Muay Thai at the Moo Bong Gym in Osan City for about three months, and he trains five times a week for two hours each session.

"The workouts are vigorous, but I understand good things come to those who work hard," said Turner as he cooled down after a series of core exercises.

In a task-oriented profession where confidence and precision are a must, the 51st Maintenance Group aircraft metals technology journeyman's mindset of "pain is temporary; greatness is forever" helps him excel on the mat.

Turner is at an intermediate level in Muay Thai, honing his skills and perfecting techniques with the intent of someday competing professionally in a grand prix tournament.

"He has a lot of potential, but the most important thing is that he wants to learn and pays very close attention," said Grant Master Myong Chae Kim, Turner's instructor.

Kim has 30 years experience, and he has trained more than 500 Airmen -- five of whom have competed at the national level.

In a day and age where modern hand-to-hand combat is backstage to unmanned aircraft and long-range missiles, Turner exemplifies the 51st Fighter Wing's credo of "ready to fight and win tonight" with aggressive confidence and dedication to perfection.
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