Ashley Davis has proven that when you put your mind to it, not only can you turn your dreams into reality, but you can truly excel at them.
The 24-year-old athlete for Team USA began participating in karate when she was just 4 years old.
“My dad was really into Bruce Lee, and he wanted us to learn martial arts,” said Davis. “I instantly fell in love with karate.”
Davis’s father was passionate about martial arts himself and was “instrumental” in helping her pursue her dreams of competing in the Olympics and on Team USA. She has numerous accomplishments to show for it.
The Hicksville native was a bronze medalist for Team Kumite in 2016 and a 2017 Panamerican Karate Federation (PKF) gold medalist.
She also won the X Jr. National Championship multiple times, the silver medal for the Jr. PKF in 2010 and is a two-time U.S. National Champion.
Currently, Davis is on the U.S. Senior National Team. But, her accomplishments extend beyond the national level. In 2015, she was the North American champion for 18 to 20 year olds and is a gold medalist for Shotokan Japan Karate Association (JKA) World Championship Team.
The accomplished athlete brought her talents to the peninsula when she opened her own karate studio, A+ Martial Arts, at 148 Middle Neck Rd. Nearly all of her students are Great Neck residents.
In her sessions, the sensei imparts her knowledge and hopes to instill confidence in her students to help them achieve their goals.
“Karate gives them an edge that I believe the world needs,” she said. “The edge of confidence.”
In addition to martial arts for 3 year olds, Davis intends to implement kickboxing and self-defense classes for people of all ages.
“I think everybody needs to know some form of self-defense,” Davis explained. “It’s not just about self-defense—even though it’s so important—it’s about training your spirit: your mind, your body, your soul.”
For Davis, her students give her the motivation to do her best, as she eventually wants to be the head coach of the U.S. National Team. The sensei is clearly a role model for any kid wanting to pursue his or her dreams—and for anyone looking for inspiration.