Freshman Works to Earn Black Belt

Brady Blaylock

King+and+his+mother+shake+hands+after+bowing+to+each+other.+This+was+after+they+sparred+each+other.

Brady Blaylock

King and his mother shake hands after bowing to each other. This was after they sparred each other.

Brady Blaylock, Video Editor

     He bows to his opponent and looks to his master instructor for the signal to begin the fight. His heart is racing with anticipation. He can hear it beat in his ears. He knows how his opponents move, the way they fight. The signal is given and freshman Taylor King seizes the moment and strikes.

     King is a candidate for his black belt and will test for it within the next two years.  He has been taking karate at Tang Soo Do Academy for three and half years.

     “In my mind, I never really thought I was ever going to make it very far because I did not think I was very good at it,” King said. “But then over time I just got better and better and improved a lot.”

     King started taking karate classes on a whim after his mother had suggested it. The classes have become a way for him to release energy and dedicate himself to something.

     “Taylor has always been a very active child looking to do something, such as being outside, playing in the woods, wanting to cut down trees, build fires,” King’s mother, Angela King said. “As he got older he got interested in video games. We came across Tang Soo Do and I asked him if he wanted to do karate and he has been doing it ever since.”

     Through hard work and practice, King has worked his way through each belt and belt test. He uses his knowledge as a way to help other students learn too.

     “Taylor is a very smart and bright student,” senior Master Instructor Chad Adams said. “He is motivated and works with other students well here. He has a gift where he can be a good natural teacher. He likes to help and assist, which is what you need to be a quality instructor.”

     King goes to Tang Soo Do Academy two times a week. He also practices at home on what he struggles with.

     “For one, [karate] has been really fun and difficult because I have learned a lot and gone through a lot of pain,” King said. “The most difficult part is learning and remembering stuff, because some of the things in karate are very confusing.”

     King plans on continuing karate for as long as he can. When he gets out of high school, he wants to either work at the academy or open up his own school.

     “He is always here and consistent which is one thing we try to preach a lot of,” class instructor John Ditezel said. “I see him as being a teacher one day and influencing others carrying it on.”

King’s dedication has been noticed by his peers as well.     

     “Some people show up and do not try their hardest, but he really gives it his all and shows that he cares about it,” sophomore Brendan Berryhill said. “I think if he keeps going with this, I think he could be able to teach other kids and overall just be a student karate teacher or instructor.”