In 2001 at the age of 39, Tony decided to take up Tae Kwon Do. He joined Institute of Modern Tae Kwon Do, because his eldest son Luke, then 8, had joined a few weeks earlier, and Tony thought it looked good, and was a way of having a joint interest with his son. Tony & Luke trained under Chief Instructor Peter Cameron at the Kallangur club. About 18mths later, at the age of 5, Tony’s youngest son Troy, also started training.
In 2004, Tony attained his Black Belt promotion, and in 2006, he was asked to take over the Banyo class. After having a taste of teaching and learning the ropes from the Chief Instructor, Tony jumped at the opportunity. Luke and Troy joined him training at Banyo, but shortly after, Troy decided Tae Kwon Do wasn’t for him, and stopped training.
Luke continued to train under Tony, and in 2008, Tony watched Luke obtain the rank of Black Belt at the age of 14. This was a very proud moment for Tony as both an instructor, and a dad.
Over the years, Tony has competed in IMT’s intra-club tournaments, with good results, but all the while, demonstrating the determination and discipline of a true martial artist. Although not overly competitive by nature, he still encourages his students to compete because of the character building and confidence boosting affects that flow from being involved. These lessons have not been lost on his own development.
Tony continues to instruct at Banyo class, which has grown dramatically in numbers over the past few years. With the number of students currently training at Banyo, Tony is fortunate to have Assistant Instructors Jacinta & Ryan Forbes, Anthony Gleeson & Kathy Pascoe support him in quality teaching practices and the promotion of the team/family values and ideals in the group. This is a very big part, of not just the Banyo club, but IMT’s core beliefs.
The self defence side of Tae Kwon Do is probably his biggest passion as he believes if he can help save just one person from becoming a statistic, then it would have all been worth it.
Tony finds great reward in watching his students progress through the ranks, and the new found confidence evident in their personalities as their skill level grows. With Banyo students ranging in age from 6 to 56, Tony adapts his teaching techniques to cater to all. Tony believes the values of discipline, commitment & respect that Tae Kwon Do instils in students, are an integral lesson in life. Whether young or old, male or female, single or a family, It’s a sport that doesn’t discriminate, so anyone can do it.
While not having youth on his side, Tony still works hard on his training and teaching techniques and tries to impart IMT’s motto of “Strive for Perfection” at every opportunity. He is also a big believer in the saying “you only get out what you are prepared to put in”.
One of his favourite quotes is:
"Willing is not enough, we must apply.
Knowing is not enough, we must do."