When Taekwondo Master Brian Yu opened Pride Martial Arts Taekwondo in Jefferson Township a year ago, he chose an appropriate name. Indeed, pride flows from the school these days.
Pride Martial Arts recently received a Best School trophy – one of only two awarded – after competing in the 2018 New Jersey Masters Cup Taekwondo Championship, which included 10 schools. As for Wu’s students, participants brought home an array of medals.
“I am so proud of my students,” he enthusiastically tells The Jefferson Chronicle, adding that he is extremely happy he chose the township as the location for his school. “I love the town; there is nature everywhere.” Yu explains that he especially appreciates the township’s natural and relaxed environment, a contrast to the school’s former location in Bergen County.
A native of South Korea, Yu himself has been practicing taekwondo for 25 years, having been coerced by his mother to learn the art. He was six years old at the time and cried at the thought, he quips. An extremely shy boy, Yu says the art built up his confidence and self-esteem, adding that this is the goal of taekwondo.
This type of martial art, he explains, is about building confidence and instilling respect and discipline. It is not about aggression, he emphasizes, but rather “being able to defend yourself.” Yu says that in the face of bullying, which is all too common today, the martial art is an ideal way for intimidated children to regain self-regard and, yes, restore their “pride.”
The Medal Winners
New Jersey Masters Cup Taekwondo medal winners include the following:
Ava Rockey – 1st place form; 2nd place sparring; 3rd place breaking
Alex McCann – 2nd place form; 3rd place breaking
Cole Havriliak – 2nd place breaking; 3rd place form
Dhruv Patel – 1st place form; 1st place breaking; 2nd place sparring
Ella DiNardo – 1st place form; 1st place breaking
Emma Burke – 1st place form; 2nd place breaking
Gianna Masucci – 1st place form; 1st place breaking; 3rd place sparring
Josh Colussi – 1st place form; 1st place breaking
Mahi Patel – 2nd place form; 3rd place breaking
Nate Burke – 1st place form; 1st place breaking
Rudra Patel – 2nd place form; second place breaking
Ryan Post – 2nd place form
Sophia Horan – 1st place sparring; 2nd place form; 2nd place breaking
Instructor Michael – 1st place form; 1st place breaking