When I first opened the Taekwon-Do school in the Constance & Buckham's Bay Community Centre in 1994, I had been training in, and teaching martial arts for more than a decade (6 years in Taekwon-Do and 5 years in Karate). I had been instructing at the Kanata Taekwon-Do Academy since 1990, and was an enthusiastic 2nd Dan black belt when we offered those first introductory classes at the Community Centre.
After years of training and teaching under my instructors and Masters, I was excited at the prospect of building and operating my own school. The "little club" in Constance Bay grew very gradually; but, we persevered every Tuesday evening and Saturday morning, even if it meant private & semi-private lessons! Slowly, word got out that we were offering martial arts training in "the Bay", and by our second year, we had more than a dozen students, children and adults.
Now, 20 years later, our school has grown to nearly 100 students; including a number of "homegrown" 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th Dan black belts. In addition to the nearly 100 students in Constance Bay, we now operate a “branch” in the new Richcraft Recreation Complex in Kanata. We already have ~80 students there in our intro programs. Over the intervening years we have developed a strong identity in the community and today, we have a very active family-oriented club that hosts and participates in numerous Taekwon-Do, social, and charitable fund-raising events annually.
As a certified International Instructor and Examiner, I see the benefits for our students and our club in associating with an established international governing body, and as such our school is a member in good-standing of the Global Taekwon-Do Federation, founded by the renowned Grand Master Park Jung Tae. At the same time, we maintain close and cooperative ties with many like-minded martial arts instructors and schools across Canada and the U.S. whether they are in the GTF, the ITF, the WTF or unaffiliated.
I am very proud of our students and instructors, and what we have accomplished together in the past 20 years...I'm looking forward to the next 20!
Sahbunim Ron Sparks