“ Remember to always keep your priorities clear, your mental health is just as important as your physical health.- Lucy Truong
Taekwon-Do has played a significant role for most of my life, from my physical capability to my moral philosophy, and even my career pathway. My decision to pursue an MSc in Human Computer Interaction and Design was inspired by a unique experience; participating in the filming production of ‘This is Taekwon-Do’, a book and DVD by First Grand Master Rhee Ki Ha. I remember standing under studio lights with the Father of British Taekwon-Do observing my performance of Chon Ji. Coupled with an animated FGMR who performed the techniques correctly and with required precision; this training aid would soon be released to global audience. But it got me thinking: how can Taekwon-Do practitioners benefit from the ever-changing digital world? I haven’t got an answer to this question yet, but hopefully my studies will provide me with the skills and frameworks to develop innovative ideas.
When I began my psychology degree with an interest in technology, I joined the Aberdeen University Taekwon-Do Club where I was warmly welcomed, and where I would find many lasting friendships. Throughout my four years, I was able to contribute through teaching and led the development of a martial arts training hall, raising the profile of AU Taekwon-Do both within the Taekwon-Do community and within the university. To future students who want to make the most of your university experience, my advice is to be active within the student community. No matter how junior or inexperienced you might feel, you’d be surprised at how many opportunities your passion may open up. Just remember to always keep your priorities clear, your mental health is just as important as your physical health.
Being a part of the BUTL squad has complemented my Taekwon-Do in several ways. Not only could I meet others with a likeminded passion for Taekwon-Do and reignite my competitive spirit, but I was able to travel while doing so. A memorable event was attending the International Taekwon-Do League in Belgium. I spent a day discovering the culture and city and the next day competing against Taekwon-Do practitioners from Germany, Cyprus and Albania! This was my first international event after a long break in competing,and in my successes (ranking 4th out of 238 competitors) I was taken back to one of the heights of my Taekwon-Do achievements where I had recently been promoted to black belt and then won three golds at my first ever national championship. BUTL have offered many opportunities for students to compete and continue to provide support to students who are keen to develop their Taekwon-Do. I highly recommend students to take advantage of this fantastic opportunity.
I owe much of my Taekwon-Do privileges to my instructors Miss Zoe Tate VI and Mr Robert Dolan VI who have provided me technical guidance and emotional support from the day I started, as well as the broader ACE Taekwon-Do community, BUTL community, and every single person who has supported me along the way. As I start my two-year MSc degree in Finland and France, I am excited to embark on the next stage of my journey: to meet the international community of Taekwon-Do!
Lucy Truong III Dan