Monday, May 5, 2014

My New Life as a CTI Taekwondo Student

"I feel stronger mentally, physically and emotionally."

By Jayne Bognar, yellow belt

As a testing white belt in the Colorado Taekwondo Institute, martial arts has impacted my life in several, positive ways.  The most pervasive being the profound impact on my over-all well-being.  In addition to being twelve pounds lighter, I feel as though my “life’s’ load” no longer weighs me down as much.  I feel stronger mentally, physically, and emotionally.  The intense exercise provides me with the much needed cathartic release of stress from my career and external events.

Prior to CTI Taekwondo, I was experiencing, on average, four Migraine headaches per month as well as frequent tension headaches accompanied by neck and shoulder pain.  All aspects of this training have dramatically diminished the latter.  Now that I am engaging in a positive outlet to lower my stress, I am more able to manage my eating rather than use food to combat stress.

It is quite validating to have others recognize the changes in me since the inception of Taekwondo in my life. The most common theme is my calmer disposition as well as an increase in my self-confidence.  When others begin to notice, you must be doing something right!   I just feel as though I walk “taller” and have a greater sense of peace and awareness in my life.  Of course, there have been classes where I have just wanted to crawl in a hole due to that “stinking thinking” which can range from, “I hate being the fattest person in class,” to “Will I ever be able to get all the way through these jumping jacks?”  These moments are fewer and farther between as I tell myself that positive thoughts breed positive results!

Finally, being a new student Colorado Taekwondo Institute has provided me with a greater sense of empathy than before, for my students. Feeling like they will “never get it” is often a common theme that my special education students communicate to me.  I now can relate to them on a deeper level, as we often have conversations about these feelings that their teacher can truly identify with.  I believe I am a more effective teacher because of it.

In conclusion, I have found something that I feel committed to and offers me more than just great exercise.  It offers another group of people to whom I can feel connected, has increased my focus, decreased my stress, and just has made me a better person all around.  A person, whom I hope, people will see an “indomitable spirit.”

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