Team GB won their first Taekwondo Gold medal in the London 2012 Games. Jade Jones kicked her way to victory, not only winning the first Gold medal for Britain.
Taekwondo is a Korean martial art. Similar to some northern kung-fu styles, it involves high kicking and long punches. The Olympic sport of Taekwondo is a refined version of the martial art and based entirely on point scoring. Kicks to the body and head score points, with head kicks scoring highest. Jumping spinning kicks win bonus points.
Essex has several Taekwondo schools spread around so everyone in the county should have the opportunity to learn and train in taekwondo. There are several organisations in the UK for taekwondo:
- British Taekwondo – Governing Body for World Taekwondo Federation (WTF) in the UK
- British TaekwonDo Council – Sports Council as the only Governing body for Tae Kwon Do in the UK
- The Tae Kwon Do Assosiation of Great Britain (TAGB)
Generally you want to find a club that is affiliated with the World Taekwondo Federation, which also has students competing nationally on a regular basis. Always ask the club how often they compete to ensure that you train at a competition club.
Chelmsford Tae Kwon Do Club TAGB
Lessons every Monday and Thursday 7.30pm – 8.30pm. Classes: Chelmsford County High School For Girls Broomfield Road, Chelmsford, Essex CM1 1RW. Tel: 07736 680684
Colchester Tae Kwondo
Free lessons for new starters. A TAGB club. Tuesdays and Thursday evenings at St Helena School, Sheepen Road, Colchester, CO3 3LE. Tel: 01206 548628 / 07947585281. Web.www.colchestertaekwondo.co.uk
Essex Taekwondo Academy
They have classes in in 4 towns in Essex: Basildon (Monday evening at the Basildon Sports Centre, 01268 533166), Braintree (Tues and Thurs at the Alec Hunter School Gym), Chelmsford (Wed and Sat at Dovedale Sports Centre, 01245 269020) and Pitsea (Fridays at the The Eversley Leisure Centre, 01268 583076). Gordon Slater is head coach with 30 years experience. Contact the venues direct or tel: 07754 759666. Web: www.essextkd.co.uk.
Witham Tae Kwon Do
A TAGB club. First classes are free. Templars Junior School, Cressing Road, Witham. Tel. 07814 426130. Web: www.withamtaekwondo.com
Hadri Taekwondo Academy – Harlow
They have trained British Taekwondo Champions. Classes in Harlow and other locations (Walthamstow, Whitechapel, Leytonstone). Burnt Mill School, First Avenue, Harlow, Essex CM20 2NR. Tel. 07946 814435. Web: www.hadritkd.co.uk
Spartan Taekwon-Do Academy – Brentwood
Classes on Monday at the Anglo European School Sports Centre and Wednesday at Brentwood School Sports Centre, Middle Hall Lane, Brentwood. All ages catered for. Tel. 07976 606573. Web: www.spartantaekwondo.com
All Registered TAGB Insutructors in Essex
- Chelmsford – Mr James Mc Kenna 5th Degree Black belt 07736680684
- Colchester – Mr Ian Luesley 3rd Degree black belt 01206 548628
- Braintree – Mr Edward Waller 3rd Degree black belt 07941313388
- Witham – Mr Stuart Hornby 1st Degree black belt 07980447201 / 07814426130
- Southend – Ms Nina Budd 4th Degree Black Belt 07717 025165
- Wickford Ms Nina Budd 4th Degree Black Belt
- TAGB Tigers Childrens club 07717 025165
All information is correct at the time of publication to the best of our knowledge. It is always best to call to check class times and locations.
Photo by Nizam Uddin.