ugg ultimate short Everything You Need to Know About Tonga
Introducing the man with the glistening torso.
When Tonga’s flag bearer Pita Taufatofua was first introduced to the world during the Olympic opening ceremony Friday night, the Internet immediately set ablaze with questions about the oiled up athlete from the Polynesian kingdom.
The 32 year old competitor returned to Today on Monday dressed in his decorated cloth and ornamental waist girdle to react to the frenzy he sparked and answer some questions about his shining physique.
“I was walking through the opening ceremony, and someone came up to me, they were just taking photos nonstop, and they said to me, ‘You know you’re trending on Twitter in every major country?'” he told the co hosts. “Once I had a look, it had just gone everywhere.”
His eye catching ensemble was a nod to Tonga’s history. “For us it was important to get our culture out to the world,” he said during the interview. “I said to them I want to march in what our ancestors wore 200 years ago and this is what it was.”
As for the coconut oil, the substance also has cultural roots and is considered an expression of ancestral ties to Tonga and the symmetry of the human body, according to Taufatofua.
1. Tonga is not his birthplace.
While he was raised in Tonga, he was not born in his father’s native land. The 32 year old Olympian was born in Australia, where his mother is from. However, he opted to represent the Polynesian state as one of seven athletes to help shine a light on the nation of just over 100,000 people.
“He chose to represent Tonga and the Pacific to show to the world that even the smallest voice needs to be heard,” his fundraising page reads. “It’s not about the size of the dog in the fight but the size of the fight in the dog!
2. Third time was a charm for getting to the Olympics.
This is not Pita’s first bid at becoming an Olympian. He tried twice before finally qualifying this year, simultaneously becoming the first Taekwondo competitor from Tonga to participate in the games.
3. He makes money off of his good looks.
While it took very little time for viewers to notice his handsome face and muscular physique, Pita has already taken advantage of his picture perfect genes. He has been modeling since he was a teenager, including a campaign for his native brand, Ugg Australia.
4. He’s raising money for this lifetime moment.
Going to the Olympics is no easy feat, both physically and financially. Having been raised in a one bedroom house with nine people in a self described “very poor family,” Pita has taken to the Internet to request monetary help for this once in a lifetime endeavor.
“With the Olympics not far away much needed funds are sought to give him the best preparation and shot at bringing that Gold medal home,” his IndieGoGo campaign reads. So far, the Tongan athlete has raised $8,897, which will go toward a laundry list of expenses including his coaches, a custom training camp, recovery programs and accommodations and fees while traveling.
5. He’s an advocate for children.
When he’s not training for the gold, Pita spends his spare time with underprivileged and homeless children, often giving speeches or teaching classes to help empower them. “Amazing experience helping teach over 100 local Thai kids here at Sabai Sabai resort Thailand! Dan and the team have done an unbeatable job here, teaching for Free all the local kids to help improve their lives and give them access to Taekwondo,” he captioned a group shot of himself surrounded by young students. “Not getting what you want out of life? Universal law 101 Give and you shall receive.”
6. He experienced loss at a young age.
Pita is one of seven children, but one of his older sisters passed away from cancer when he was just a child.
“I still remember the day we had her funeral,” he said. “At that age I felt the sadness from everyone else around. Because I was so young I didn’t have a full grasp of what death was. But what I do remember was the sadness of the people around me, my family and everyone else. She was a student at Queen Salote college at the time, she was only 12.”