Volume 6, Issue 10
DONGNYEOK KANG, A TWO-TIME WORLD CHAMPION IN TAE KWON DO, IS THE HEAD MASTER AT LEE’S TAE KWON DO, A MARTIAL ARTS STUDIO IN VALRICO. Tae Kwon Do is a Korean martial art and the national sport of South Korea. Tae Kwon Do may be loosely translated as "the way of the foot and fist" or "the way of kicking and punching." Head Master Dongnyeok Kang is the owner of Lee’s Tae Kwon Do in Valrico. As a graduate of South Korea’s Keimyung Martial Art University, a two-time World Champion, a two-time Tae Kwon Do gold medalist and part of the 2003 and 2005 South Korea National Demo Team, he has the experience to teach your child discipline, respect and selfconfidence. Kang moved to the area from North Carolina at the beginning of this year to take over the academy, located at 2568 S.R. 60 E. in Valrico, within the Nicolette Plaza. His cousin, Jeff Kang, just moved to the area from Chicago to become general manager of Lee’s Tae Kwon Do. Classes offered depend on age and level, Jeff said. There are four levels within Tae Kwon Do and within each level, different belt colors. To begin, there is Level 1, which includes white, yellow stripe and high white. Level 2 includes yellow, high yellow, green and high green. Level 3 includes blue, high blue, red and high red. Level 4 includes the Deputy belt, 1Dan Black Belt, 2Dan Black Belt and 3Dan Black Belt. In order to receive a high blue belt, one needs to have been practicing Tae Kwon Do for 18 months; for the 1Dan Black Belt, 30 months; for 2Dan is three-and-a-half years and to achieve a 3Dan belt takes six years. There are up to 8Dan Black Belts, explained Jeff. Every month, Lee’s Tae Kwon Do has belt tests and every week it rotates teaching sparring, forms, endurance and self-defense. Each class held at the studio is 40 minutes long and has approximately 15 students in it. The 2,000-sq.-ft. academy has 110-120 students who train there in total. For its after-school program, it offers pick-up from four local schools, including Yates and Valrico elementary schools, and has a tutor on-site to help students with their homework. Also available for students of Lee’s Tae Kwon Do are birthday parties, where black belt, kicking and breaking wood demonstrations are given by the grand master, a demonstration is made by the birthday guest and the children can play indoor kickball and baseball. The cost to have a birthday party at Lee’s Tae Kwon Do is $80 for a minimum of 20 guests, not including family members. Lee’s Tae Kwon Do has classes on Mondays from 4-8:50 p.m., Tuesdays from 4:30-8:50 p.m., Wednesdays from 11 a.m. - 8:50 p.m., Thursdays from 4:30-8:50 p.m., Fridays from 11 a.m. - 8:50 p.m. and Saturdays from 9:10-9:50 a.m. It is closed Sundays. Birthday parties are scheduled on Saturdays and Sundays. Class schedules change monthly. For more information, please call 6434262 or visit www.leestaekwondo.info.