We moved our family to Tampa, from Minnesota, for my career and the warmer weather. My career is demanding and I frequently arrived home late at night completely spent. Something needed to be done. My wife remembered many of the hobbies that I had used to blow off steam during my rigorous medical training and suggested that we investigate some local martial arts programs. (I had received a black belt in Choi Kwang Do in 1991 and had trained for several years with my wife in Aikido). She realized that having a passionate hobby that we shared allowed us additional time together and she recognized the “cleansing” effect that martial arts training had on the both of us.
A Quest Martial Arts flyer found its way to our home and I followed up with a drive by the dojo one Sunday afternoon. I was intrigued by the concept of a modernized, no-nonsense style. An introductory lesson followed, and insecurity issues aside, we signed up.
The training experience has been remarkable for many reasons and I have gained many insights into martial arts training from my experience at the Quest Center. First of all the dojo has a completely different “vibe” than what I had experienced in the past. I was not used to the “cooperative” training. The instructors had an answer for any question I posed, and importantly, the answers made sense. The katas were practical. I didn’t need to leave the ground any more to attempt a spinning hook kick to the head! I could actually improve as I aged by becoming more efficient rather than more athletic or more flexible.
An unexpected benefit of To Shin Do training was the focus on life skills and meditation. It never ceases to amaze me how useful many of the lessons I learned about effective communication, diffusing hostility, and understanding others intent, body language, posturing, etc. are in my everyday life.
Perhaps my favorite part of the training has been the fact that it has been, and will remain, a family affair. Our family has grown together as part of the Quest family. I look back fondly on my foundational training in To Shin Do and I look forward to lifetime of progress in the art.