Dale Hubbuck - Assistant Instructor
I started Taekwon-Do training in 1995. I was always a sporty person and was looking for something to help keep myself fit and supplement the football I was playing. I initially joined with a couple of friends as I didn't really have the confidence to join on my own. After a nervous first grading I really started enjoying the sparring and other physical parts of my training. I went along to my first TAGB competition in Leicester as a spectator and saw a breaking world record achieved. This fuelled my interest even more for Taekwon-Do and over the first year I trained hard for my gradings, entered the local area and national championships gaining a few silver and bronze medals along the way. I also went on a two week training holiday to the Canary Islands which was a very interesting experience gaining instruction from lots of different instructors. Little did I know that in the junior class at that time would be my future Instructor Miss Deakin who has been an inspiration for Chesterfield Taekwon-Do club.
I graded to 3rd Kup without missing a grading but injured my ankle ligaments playing football. I needed some time away to rest while I healed but returned and passed my 2nd Kup successfully. I then went through a period of time due to more injuries and other commitments that meant I could not devote as much time to Taekwon-Do as I would have wanted. During this time Chesterfield Taekwon-Do club moved over to PUMA and my previous Instructor passed the club over to Miss Deakin. I then returned to my training more regular and with the support of my wife and family successfully gained my black belt passing with a credit in April 2009. This was a very special feeling after such a long journey and I was very proud of getting my black belt for myself, Miss Deakin, my previous instructor and Chesterfield Taekwon-Do Club. The same year I entered the local area competition and won gold medal in the sparring and destruction events.
I was asked if I would like to become an assistant instructor by Miss Deakin and I was pleased to be given this opportunity. It is a very rewarding experience teaching other people and watching students getting out of Taekwon-Do what they want to achieve. It also helps with your own training and I want to go for my 2nd Dan grading as soon as possible.
Chesterfield Taekwon-Do club is growing into a great family club both professionally and socially. I've made some great friends and met a lot of interesting people. Little PUMA's is a great introduction for the young children; I hope my two children will start soon. The junior and senior classes have a great atmosphere where the students are keen to learn and help their peers and juniors.
To finish off it's only when I see it in black and white that I realise just how far I've come. Once I'd learnt one grade the next one becomes just that little bit more challenging with new moves and patterns to learn. Because of this there is always room for improvement and it's a gradual process. Sometimes that can really put people off. I prefer to look at it a different way though. A friend of mine once said "it is like climbing a mountain. If you always keep your eye on the summit, it never seems to get any closer. It's only when you turn around and look behind you that you can see how far you have come".
So if you are thinking of joining whether it is for fitness, self defence, the art itself or a place to meet new people or you are already a member you never know what you can achieve unless you give it a go, try your hardest and persevere to reach your goal.
Enjoy your Training!
Update: Since this article was published Dale has successfully achieved his 3rd Degree Black Belt.