TMA Role Models - Paula Andrews - Adult Student

Once again we interview another of our TMA Role Models, this time we meet Paula Andrews.  Paula is an adult student, 2nd dan Black Belt and the Head Instructor of our Kids Martial Arts programme.  Find out more about what motivates her in this insightful interview:-

I first started training when I was 39.  I started training as I was invited to join in by shihan Chris, as my son jimmy had started training the month previously.  It had never occurred to me that I could do it too.

I had read in a magazine that Kickboxing was good for children to help with their confidence and I saw Shihan in Tescos whilst shopping and went up to him and started asking questions.

Since starting training, I have noticed my own confidence increase, I have managed to achieve a goal that when I walked through the door on my 1st lesson, I would never in my wildest dreams thought possible.   This has in turn taught me that the only boundaries are the the ones we ourselves put into place.

The focus and discipline I have learnt in my training lends its self well to my work and home life, have the discipline to tell myself what and when I should be doing and the focus and determination to make it happen.  Balancing work and home isn’t always easy and I find that planning my week as much as possible and making use of the flexible timetable at TMA I can make it to lessons, but it is never as many as I would like J.

There have been times when I have thought about quitting.  When I was going for my green belt, I found the spinning back kick it especially challenging.  At that time I was also diagnosed with ME, so I was fighting tiredness and felt like I couldn’t give any more.  I had to have a long think about how far I had come and keep pushing, one more class, one more belt at a time.  It is an ongoing thing, but something I am determined to overcome.

The focus, discipline, goal setting have helped me so much in my own life outside training.  It has helped me deal with personal issues that I know I would not have had the strength and self belief that I could overcome and beat before I started Kickboxing.  It has brought out a hidden resilience that I never would have thought I had.

My role models are the children I teach, they are such an inspiration, when I see their enthusiasm, the enjoyment in their faces it reflects back and I enjoy all the energy they bring  Also they make me very jealous with their flexability and stamina of youth.  It keeps me on my toes and pushes me, so I can never be complacent or satisfied, always striving forward.

As an adult and a parent, I can see the benefits of training for kids and teens, it gives them not only the most valuable gift a parent can give, the ability to protect themselves and confidence to deal with challenging situations.  It also gives them the fitness they need to have a healthy lifestyle and the ability to keep it going throughout their adult life.  What I love about TMA is it has a friendly non judgemental atmosphere.  I was welcomed and made to feel  very welcome.  The club ethos of “I will be the best I can be” struck me as  a fantastic motto for life, for adults and kids alike in and out of the dojo




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