Fitness and Self Defence

Josh van Limbeek

Branch Instructor

South Hobart TAS Region

South Hobart Dojang

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

I’ve been training in Taekwondo for about 3 years. I got started with a close friend after seeing how much our daughters enjoyed it. I never looked back.

Highlights of your taekwondo success?

Being welcomed into the United Taekwondo family by our amazing Chief Instructor Brett, his wonderful wife Branch Instructor Sharon and all of the fantastic, dedicated Instructors. Everyone certainly made it easy to learn and really enjoy the benefits of taekwondo.

Another highlight is opening up the South Hobart Dojang in Tasmania after our family moved there in January 2018.

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

My black belt grading was in 2019 in Canberra. As I had moved to Hobart in 2018, my training was mostly by myself however, I had the most amazing support from Chief Instructor Brett, Instructor Sharon, Instructor Kim and Black Belt Laura. It took a lot of motivation to keep my head in the right place to continue improving so I could apply for black belt. I was getting up at 5am, 6 days a week and running on Mount Wellington before going to the gym to work on my taekwondo techniques. I managed to sustain an injury to my ankle about 6 weeks out from grading but after a week of rest I pushed through and made it to grading day. Then on grading day, I tore my calf muscle while doing warm up kicks but I was determined to get my black belt. I also broke my foot doing a board break because I didn’t use the right technique, a lesson all of my students will be taught when it comes to them doing board breaks. The 6 months of training for my black belt were intense but I really got a kick (pun intended!) out of the amazing feeling I got when I achieved my black belt and I can’t wait to do it again to go for my 2nd Degree.

How often do you train in taekwondo, gym, etc?

I try to train 4-5 days a week. 2 of those days have specific Taekwondo training mixed in with gym routines. The other days I do high intensity interval training or weight training. I try and do at least 15-20 mins of stretching 3 days a week too.

Favourite taekwondo move or moves?

My favourite Taekwondo move would be a turning kick. It’s a basic kick but can be very effective. Combine it with a spinning heel kick afterwards and it is a really effective 2 step combo.

What are your personal goals in taekwondo?

My personal goals in Taekwondo are: to enjoy training, achieve Chief Instructor one day and to inspire and motivate as many students to reach their goals and be confident in themselves along the way. Eventually I would like to own a Dojang.

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

Absolutely! It’s helping me keep up with my kids and stay active. My family also train with me so I really enjoy being the boss for once! HA! Being active really helps with my mental health too.

Your favourite saying and what this means?

“You only get out what you are willing to put in.” It’s easy to sit back and do nothing, if you work hard, you will get many more benefits than if you sit back and put in no effort at all.

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

Don’t give up! You may feel some nerves to begin with but they will pass. You may feel like you aren’t getting better but you are, one day things will just click and that’s the best feeling ever! Then one day, you’ll be training for your black belt!

I was the most inflexible person ever when I started, I still struggle with flexibility but I try and stick to a stretching routine and it’s getting better.

What other activities apart from taekwondo do you enjoy?

Fishing, mountain bike riding and organic farming.

Favourite movie(s) and why?

Shrek 2 – Eddie Murphy as Donkey gets me every time, love it!

Home Alone 1 and 2 – Love how Kevin stops the crooks with ingenuity!

Favourite food?

Thin and crispy pepperoni pizza with barbecue sauce!! Not healthy but sooooo delicious! Oh and chilli, I have chilli on EVERYTHING!!

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

In 5 years, at least a 2nd Dan instructing 40-50 students. In 10 years, a 3rd or 4th Dan with my own dojang on my own property, instructing 3-4 days a week!

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