All my life I had dreamed of doing a martial art. I often talked about it, but never came up with the discipline to make it happen, then one day Sentoshi Sensei and Mrs. Russo were tile shopping in the store where I worked and recognized me from a previous visit. They noticed that I had lost some weight and inquired about my wellbeing. I told them I was going through a divorce and was trying to get my life figured out. They told me about To Shin Do and invited me to a class. I was very impressed by their kind and supportive nature and couldn’t help but think that they had landed in my store for a reason that day.
Walking into the Dojo, I felt a sense of peace and strength. I realized that my opportunity to change the direction of my life was in front of me. Initially, I felt a little lost as I had been used to using strength, and this was a far cry from the boxing I did in the military. However, I had always enjoyed a challenge and I was determined to get through one class and then another. My perseverance paid off and I slowly learned that the key was to manipulate balance through control and technique. I began to love the way I felt both mentally and physically after completing each class. I was benefitting from the top-notch instruction. I started meeting more people and felt more comfortable and there was camaraderie among the students that I realized I had been missing in my life.
Now, 4 ½ years later I am about to achieve my Black Belt. There have been personal challenges along the way and nights when I was tired and did not want to go to class, but I persevered through those times, made myself go to class and pushed through. Now, at the doorstep of achieving my Black Belt I am very proud of myself and my accomplishment. Goals and goal setting are now an important part of my life.
It is truly an honor and a privilege to study and be under the instruction of some of the best To Shin Do masters in the world.