Mr Jay Inamdar II Degree - Yi Dan
Training since: 2001 Trained under: Master Bryan VII
TKD in a nutshell: Core self defence art with emphasis on striking and movement. Training will work on maximising power and speed through technique and fitness.
How it will benefit you: Increased focus, physical fitness, mental strength, discipline, and confidence.
Club ethos: Focus on practical and effective techniques rather than flashy and impractical showmanship. Humility, discipline, mental strength, technique and fitness.
Training Tip: You are only as strong as your mind. The strongest body will fail if it does not have the courage to act. Condition, toughen and master your mind. Embrace the pain and your body will submit to your goals.
My father always wanted me and my brother to take up martial arts since we were young. Like most people (children more so) the urge to quit grows rather quickly when presented with something difficult. Being overweight and unfit at the time with my embarrassing interpretation of a press-up, “I don’t like it” was an easy excuse, as was feigning the occasional injury or sickness. My dad was having none of it. He made it abundantly clear that this was not some leisurely activity or sport. This was something as vital to my personal development as anything else I was to ever under take.
It was about being able to defend myself, defend others around me and walk upright without fear of being a victim. Being brought up in a rough area this was well appreciated. The decision to train at Wembley TaeKwonDo was simple as my father was himself an old student under Master Bryan and knew the standard of the club. Quality leaves a lasting impression.
I began to get fit, my wheezing stopped, my press-ups (slowly) improved and my confidence increased. After a while I found I was able to avoid confrontation without having to resort to violence – quite ironic given the perceived notion of martial artists being aggressive and resorting to physicality to deal with situations. It was a result of increased calm in hostile situations and positive and strong body language.
On my journey from a white belt to black I had numerous mentors and supporters to help overcome all manner of obstacles, from physical to mental. Special thanks must be given to Mr John O’Conner who really epitomised what training was about. A phenomenal disciplinarian, superbly fit and a solid unrelenting fighter, he was in my eyes the archetype martial artist who really pushed for quality and effort in everything. I would be a far lesser black belt without him.
Mr Derrick Clarke with his precise handwork in sparring, quick movement and iron limbs. We still train together and no amount of time has made his blocks any less painful to bear! And of course there was Master Bryan. Minimal wastage of movement, focused attacks and phenomenal distancing. And when the fancy took him he inspired me and others with those rare glimpses at the wealth of talent under his humble and unassuming exterior. From his effortless one arm push-ups and pull-ups to seemingly spring assisted high jumps or his floor dropping side kicks I was set a bar to aim for. All our instructors had the variety and skills to encourage me to be a rounded and complete martial artist.
With the right attitude and effort I believe any student can transform way beyond their own expectations and while no two people will be the same, the only person anyone should worry about bettering is their former self. I must also add that no martial art will ever make you invincible but finding the right club will equip you with the tools to defend yourself and instil a sense of confidence and enhance your entire being not just your physical prowess as a mere fighter.
And the right club is what is essential. Too often we start an art with no true idea of what makes a good teacher, club or institute. A half decent kick, a fancy uniform, some flash routine and bluster and most of us are sold. You certainly won’t find that here. Personally I like to think of the club upholding a standard for excellence. It runs down from the head our institute with Grandmaster Choy under whom Master Bryan trained under directly. The right club, in my eyes at least is about a teacher who has skill but humility, a club environment that trains hard but is friendly and polite and part of an organisation that will not compromise its standards simply to keep its numbers up by passing low quality students..
Students are a product of their teachers, and therefore I hope students will learn to conduct themselves with dignity, honour and humility which we value more than passing physical skills.
Since gaining my Black Belt in 2007 I have been assisting with teaching at the club and have been training in other disciplines to further my martial knowledge. TaeKwonDo remains a core component of my training and has been the foundation I have built everything else on and I am presently training towards my III Dan.