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Taekwondo, A Hidden Gem

Photo by Victoria Hernandez

Dedicated, committed and hard-working: those are the characteristics that define the taekwondo attendants perfectly. It was a Monday night when six Manhattan College students gathered at Draddy Gymnasium, eager to start their taekwondo class, led by associate professor and acting chair of mechanical engineering, John C. Leylegian, Ph.D.

Photo by Victoria Hernandez

Photo by Victoria Hernandez

There are all sorts of benefits that taekwondo can provide, including concentration, balance and strength. Just like any physical activity, the benefits of improved health and reduced stress are also present. “[With taekwondo,] they stop thinking in terms of limitations,”  Leylegian said.

Martial arts teach participants to channel their physical and mental strength, as well as to focus. This is a major asset to a college student’s life because in the middle of midterms, we all want that time to relax and take our minds off of the duties we have to deal with.

Taekwondo can be difficult at the beginning, but it can also be very easy to pick up. Thanks to this, taekwondo teaches you discipline and how to hear and follow instructions. Most of the students that have worked out in this class had no previous experience but they now attend regularly after discovering the hidden gem that taekwondo is.

As the workout progresses, it gets more intense. “Its definitely difficult but it helps you with your balance, your core muscles and self confidence,” Phoebe Costello, freshman mechanical engineering major, said.

In only one practice you can see it is a very inclusive group of students, everyone helps each other out and seems like a no-judgment zone.

“It’s a great environment…everyone goes at their own pace we are all here to have a great time,” Greg Zajac, senior mathematics major, said.

Photo by Victoria Hernandez

Photo by Victoria Hernandez

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