Our kids were featured in the latest issue of Shadow Lake Living magazine! Here’s the article text:
Two years ago, Melissa’s family were at their wits end. The three-year-old had so much energy, it was driving the family crazy. They tried several toddler and preschool activity groups, but she got easily bored, and they certainly didn’t drain the energy like they were hoping. So they looked to organised sports, but most clubs didn’t have programs for such young children.
Then they found a local taekwondo gym that was willing to consider her. “The gym owners warned me out beforehand,” laughs Rebecca. “They said that most three year olds aren’t ready to start formal training and to not be disappointed or upset if things didn’t work out.”
After her first lesson, Melissa was hooked. Here was a sport that encouraged her to yell, punch and run! Her parents were happy that it also involved listening, showing respect, following instruction, self discipline, and focus – they signed her up on the spot. After a few months of watching from the sidelines, Melissa’s big sister Jess decided that it looked like fun, and swapped from gymnastics to taekwondo.
When the family moved to Shadow Lake in December last year, one of their priorities was to find a good martial arts gym for the two girls. They settled at Martial Arts International (MAI), in Bellevue. Melissa, now five years old, is in the Lil Dragons program, which is for younger kids aged 4-6. Nine-year-old Jess is in the regular taekwondo program.
“We love living in Shadow Lake. It’s so close to everything and everyone has been super welcoming. It’s always hard to find a new gym when you move to a new town, but we’re happy here [at MAI]. The girls love their instructors and really enjoy the training,” Rebecca explains. “After watching them for awhile, I decided to join up too. I love that I can train alongside Jess. It’s a great bonding experience to learn new skills together.”
“I love getting to kick and punch mommy when we do sparring practice,” Jess clarifies. “I’m pretty quick!”
What does Melissa enjoy about taekwondo? “Everything!” she exclaims. “I like to roll onto the mats. [I enjoy it] when we can run around really fast and yell and kick things down. I’m not allowed to do that at home.”
Rebecca laughs. “She still has a lot of energy, but we’re learning to channel it into constructive outlets. I’m so thankful to have found a sport that both girls love.”