I started Taekwondo in 2009 when I was 12. I am now 15. When I first started I was uncoordinated and very nervous. I remember being embarrassed and nervous about being wrong or not keeping up. I also remember being amazed at how high and hard people could kick.
I believe Taekwondo is both a sport and a Martial Art. It is a sport in the way that it allows people to keep fit and compete but it is also a Martial Art because of what Taekwondo actually is, kicking, fighting, sparring and poomsae. But Taekwondo isn't just that, it is also an art and trains us to be able to calm down and stop fights to keep peace with others. It is a way which people can learn discipline, coordination, strength, flexibility and how to defend yourself, but also how to unify our mind with our body.
I joined because I had enjoyed a Taekwondo workshop and wanted to try it out and participate in the actual club. I am very glad I joined and it is now one of my main sports which I hope to do for as long as possible.
At my first grading I was so worried about getting everything wrong but when I passed and got my first ever coloured belt, I was so relieved, proud and happy. As I progressed I started to love doing the Poomsae. When I first found out that to do a black belt grading, I had to know all of the Taeguk Poomsae, I thought I would never be able to remember them.
As I have graded higher in the belts, I have found that the Poomsae get better, more fun and interesting. Now that I am here grading to try and get my black belt I look back and can't believe how far I have come.
Taekwondo has improved my flexibility, coordination, fitness and strength. Before Taekwondo I would never have thought that I would be able to break a board or be grading to try and get my black belt. It is an amazing feeling to be here, having practised, graded and trained for the last three years to get here.
When I did my first competition, I was nervous because I wasn't sure about the rules and I had never experienced sparring with someone I didn't know. I had also never experienced the Lajust electronic guard system. I got silver and was really proud of myself. I now enjoy going to the Lajust competitions and trying my best to improve and get better.
It is always inspiring to see the really good fighters fight and try and work towards being like them. It makes me want to improve event more.
It is a great feeling to know that if I was attacked I would be able to defend myself and stand up for myself. Being able to learn self-defence has made me feel a lot more confident and comfortable about being able to protect myself.
Finally, I'd like to thank Jackie for being a great instructor and helping me to get to where I am now. I'd also like to thank Mum, Dad and my friends for supporting me and Master No for being a great inspiration.