Fitness and Self Defence

Brett Canning

Chief Instructor

Canberra ACT Region

Branch / Region

Wanniassa Dojang / Canberra ACT Region
Duffy Dojang / Canberra ACT Region

How long have you been training in Taekwondo? And what got you started?

I started Taekwondo in 1989. I started with a few friends and I wanted to be able to jump and spin and kick like in the movies!!!

Highlights of your Taekwondo success?

  • Achieving my 1st dan Black Belt in 1992
  • Being in charge of my own Branch in 1993
  • Achieving my 2nd dan Black Belt in 1998
  • Joining United Taekwondo in 2007
  • Achieving my 3rd dan Black Belt in 2008
  • Achieving my 4th dan Black Belt in 2010

Describe your first black belt grading, and what it took to get you there?

I had 6 months of preparation training leading up to my Grading in 1992. It was VERY hard and I gave blood and sweat (literally) to reach that day. My Grading was in the evening, and due to the venue having a leaky roof, the Grading was moved to another school. I finally turned up to the right place… 45 minutes late !!!

My Grading was the hardest thing I had ever done, and I had never been more tired in my life ! I got through all of my board breaks, some on the second attempt. When the Grading was over and I got my Black Belt, I really did feel like it was one of the biggest achievements of my life.

How often do you train in Taekwondo, gym etc?

I try to train 4 times a week and instruct 2 other days a week. As well as Taekwondo classes, I go to the gym and do long distance running.

Favourite Taekwondo move or moves?

  • Back kick
  • Patterns
  • Combination jumping twisting kick followed by jumping turning kick
  • 540 degree kick

What are your personal goals for the future?

  • To continue to oversee the growth of United Taekwondo in Canberra, including the ‘Tiny Taeks’ program which targets children aged 3 – 6
  • To continue to train and improve in United Taekwondo and set a standard that will encourage and inspire my students and other members of the art.

What would you like to see more of or less of in United Taekwondo that could benefit members?

MORE Senior Instructors doing patterns, board breaks and dynamic kicking at Gradings and camps

Has Taekwondo benefited home life? If so, in what way?

Yes. I can be more focused in the things I do.

Your favourite saying and what this means?

“If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always got.”
To me, this means if you want something to change, you have to do something about it.

Best advice you can give someone training and wishing to start training in Taekwondo?

To commit to regular training and remain patient – but complete the journey, because the rewards will be worth it.

What other activities apart from Taekwondo do you enjoy?

  • Playing with my children
  • Socialising with friends
  • Having a relaxed coffee in the sun at a nice café
  • Running
  • Watching and playing sport

Favourite movie(s) and why?

  • Star Wars – brilliant adventure story with heroes you love
  • Star Trek – ditto
  • Ace Ventura, Pet Detective – incredibly funny
  • Rumble in the Bronx – completely inspirational because of what Jackie Chan can do
  • No Retreat, No Surrender – inspirational because of the training and what you can achieve when you train hard

Favourite food?

Chinese food and Indian curries.

With regards to Taekwondo where do you see yourself in 5 years?, 10 years?

5 years – standing proudly, as Chief Instructor and father, watching my 10 year old son achieve his junior Black Belt

10 years – haven’t thought that far ahead.

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