Posted by: angelasommers | June 20, 2013

True Appreciation

Pro-7 bong 05

This happened a long time ago, at a Self Discovery weekend held by Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim.  Both my partner and me were considerably younger, and while he is still doing the same things and just as vigorously, for the time being, until my foot is healed, I take great joy in looking at these kinds of pictures and videos.

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Sometimes, I was on the downhill side of things, but it was a great time nonetheless.  This is how you learn the most, when you have to struggle!

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As you can imagine, in my current condition, I do a lot of reading.  I had to chuckle when I ran across this incredible gem in one of Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim‘s books, “The Silent Master:”  (page 71)

“Your body is the most elegant creation you possess.  Just as you learn to use your mind properly, think of how important it is, then, to use and care for your body with the same respect and holiness you accord your spiritual consciousness. 

Discipline of the body works discipline of the mind.  Discipline your mind and you strengthen your body.

Appreciation is the first step.  What if you could use only certain parts of your body?  Have you ever thought of what you would do if you had only one arm?  Or no arms? Or no sight?  Most people who enter a martial arts school are physically healthy and take their bodies for granted.  It’s for this reason that I sometimes have them try to do what they think are normal everyday things without the use of their legs or arms or eyes.  Very quickly they learn how complex the movements of their hands can be or how precious their sight is.

Your body is a miraculous gift!  Utilize it, care for it, strengthen it.  Don’t waste it or take it for granted!”

I sure had taken my full mobility for granted, and now I am certainly appreciating so much more what I have and what I can do!


Posted by: angelasommers | June 17, 2013

Excuses are a senseless waste of energy

Today, I want to put it out all into the open.  Today, no excuses will survive!

If you have been following this blog, you know that I had foot surgery recently, and am on crutches for 3 more weeks.  I have the perfect excuse for a lot of things, right?

Wrong!  As this blog title says it all – Excuses are a senseless waste of energy!  My Martial Arts teacher, Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim has a lot to say about this.

Just because I am physically unable to go and train hard in my favorite places, such as these

training area in fog.MTS.Still004

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does not mean I should stay in bed and sleep more!

Ok, so the first week after surgery, I did do just that.  It does take some time for all the anesthesia and assorted drugs to get out of your system.

But after that week, I realized that I was just being lazy and making excuses.  It’s only my foot that is incapacitated, but not my brain, not my hands, arms, etc.

So, at 5:30 am every day, when I would normally get up and work out here

more training area in fog.MTS.Still002

and here

more training area in fog.MTS.Still001

I get up, walk around on my crutches, do upper body workouts and after getting cleaned up, get right to work on my computer.  No excuses!

Here are the exact words of Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim about excuses – lets all read and take them to heart!

“You make an excuse because somehow you think this is  more beneficial than being honest with yourself or someone else.  Most excuses are fueled by the belief that you can’t do what you know you should.  No such thing!  Be aware that I can’t usually means I could, but I won’t.  For example, I can’t work any harder to get this promotion might mean I could work harder, but I won’t because I am too lazy.

People have a problem with their self concept, not with their capability.  So, if you find yourself saying, I can’t, examine this statement very closely!  It rarely means I am not able, and your Silent Master is prepared to boost you and support you towards realizing any true desire you have.  Most of the time, you can!  You will just have to persevere with continued effort!” (The First Element, pages 132, 133)


Posted by: angelasommers | June 14, 2013

True Patience

Patience!  Patience!  Patience!


Seriously though, now that my stitches are out and I have progressed to this beautiful blue cast

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and now that I am exactly at midway point of having to wear this cast and having to stay off the leg for a total of 6 weeks – I am finding that now, more than ever, I need patience!

Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim just smiles and reminds me to be patient and not allow myself to get stressed.  “Give your body what it needs,” she says, “you cannot rush healing.”

And while I am eying these

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and watching these over and over again:

what really gets me through this time are Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim’s beautiful and very true words:

“One of nature’s most beautiful symbols of patience is the transformation – the metamorphosis – of the caterpillar into a butterfly, when the outward picture of the caterpillar’s being changes drastically from one form to another.  Perhaps you have a situation that needs just such a radical transformation.  If you desire to make a change as great as this, consider how the quality of patience is essential.

For a certain period, the caterpillar ingests food to enable it to grow to a certain point.  This is a distinct period of time that cannot be rushed.  When that point is reached, it then forms a cocoon in which it must wait for another period of time.  A transformation occurs in the quiet cocoon that cannot be rushed or disturbed.  Then, at last, at the appointed time, a butterfly emerges, a different creature altogether from the caterpillar, who then reproduces so that the cycle begins all over again.

True patience is knowing the truth and expecting the truth to manifest.” (Seven Steps to Inner Power, p74, 75)

Posted by: angelasommers | June 4, 2013

Training under challenge

Ok, so who am I trying to fool.

My current “leg status” is a bit challenging and taxing my patience.  “Patience” is the last of our code of ethics, and Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim has put it there for a good reason.

I am normally a very patient person, as you can see in the second picture below, but right now I really would just love to do something like this:

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Yes, this is me!


Instead, this is my foot in its current condition:

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“Non-weight bearing” for 6 weeks is what the doctor told me after the surgery.


Ok, so of course I am following doctors orders.  He only promised great results IF I stayed off the foot the entire 6 weeks.

But, no time for feeling down; no time for feeling sad – no time even for being impatient.

Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim says, no matter what, the power is in you, it is your personal choice what you do in your life!

What do I do meanwhile, until the foot heals:

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Still be the warrior of my life, of course!


Posted by: angelasommers | April 10, 2013

My favorite places to train

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There is no question that I love to train wherever I am.  I love our DoJang – it’s home!  It’s home base and it’s where I started to train and where I go very frequently.

But, as Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim points out, the entire world can be our DoJang!  I have always been an outdoors person, but I really got into loving to train Martial Arts outdoors was during Self Discovery weekends.  Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim used to hold these weekends in a beautiful redwood forest near the Northern California coast, and she brought us in contact with the land, with the pure energy from earth, trees, air, and all the wonderful energy that nature has to offer.

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Among the trees, I learned about Ki energy, about channeling this energy and using it, and so much more!  I learned that martial Arts really is about body, mind, and spirit, all together in total harmony.

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So, every opportunity I get, I go to the great outdoors, and work out right there!

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If you aren’t already training outdoors once in a while – give it a chance!  You will be surprised how energized you will feel, how rejuvenated, and just how much better you will be able to perform your moves!

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Invariably, during and after training outdoors, I think about these words, that Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim wrote in her book, “The Silent Master:”

“You live in a wonderful time called now.  In this moment, everything true about you is waiting to be recognized and expressed.  Everything in the past is gone.  Tomorrow will never come.  There is always only now.  You can take charge, take action, and create freedom for yourself!”

Posted by: angelasommers | March 28, 2013

I am definitely still in the game!

I love being in Jung Suwon class.  I really really do.

I know to some I might sound like a broken record, but to you Martial Arts students and Masters, and to you involved in any serious sports training, you know that you can never have too much passion, too much excitement, too much motivation to train.

Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim keeps the excitement going, and in all my 28 years of training, I have never lost the drive, the need, the passion, to train.   I have had many other issues, but training that was never optional, that was always a necessity.

I love to work with students of all ages, and have had the opportunities lately to work with our tiniest of warriors.  Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim calls them our “acorn warriors.”  Because, just like the small acorn will turn into a very strong, tall oak tree, so our little warriors will develop into strong people.

My foot is having some major issues again, and rather than sit by the sidelines, I prefer to do whatever I still can, to feel, breathe, smell, drink, eat that martial arts spirit.



Like Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim always says, “the power is in you, it is your personal choice what you do in your life!


Posted by: angelasommers | January 16, 2013

My Martial Arts Passion

At Seoul Inchon Airport, just before our flight home

At Seoul Inchon Airport, just before our flight home

After several trans-continental flights I am finally settled back in to “regular” schedules.  This means, back in Jung Suwon classes, and now that Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim is finally back from her 2 1/2 month stay in Korea, classes have been rocking!

Here is me, back at Jung Suwon, in action:


I am so fast, it’s all blurry (well, maybe not 😉 )



And here, I get to work with our youngest Jung Suwon warrior, who is 3 proud years old!  He is full of energy and spunk, and doesn’t know fear.  Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim allows kids to train at a very early age, because they are able to learn and absorb at a much faster rate, regardless of how they act and regardless of their physical coordination.

Just take a look at how great Joshi does:

2012-12-10 Eas and Joshi copy 2012-12-10 Eas-Joshi 2 copy 2012-12-10 Eas-Joshi 3

These are my greatest joys as martial artist,  to work with young warriors, those that are young not only in body, but also those that are young in mind and spirit, and share the wonderful things that Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim has passed on to me.


Posted by: angelasommers | December 26, 2012

Living the Martial Arts Spirit

It’s in my blood.  It’s in my DNA now.  It’s my way of life!  I am finding that no matter what I do, I carry Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim’s teachings with me, and that means, her teachings about Ki energy, about awareness, about visualization – simply put, about the spirit – and practical aspect – of Martial Arts.

And I love our new Jung Suwon DoJang.  Come check this out!  It is beautiful, it is very large, and it is an awesome training place!

Posted by: angelasommers | November 4, 2012

Pain does not kill you

Yes, that is right.  You may not like what you are about to read, but give it a chance.  Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim, my very wise and so very experienced Master, has taught me this:

Pain does not kill.  Sometimes, what causes the pain, can kill if you don’t fix it.  But pain itself is just a sensation, a feeling, and something not pleaseant.  So, when before or during a hard Jung Suwon class you feel pain, when you get hit a bit during sparring, when you get pushed beyond what you think you can handle, when you emotions tell you to give up, but your inner warrior tells you to keep going – do yourself a favor and keep going.

Don’t let the little aches and pains hold you back.  Don’t even let bigger pains chain you down.

To be sure:  Obviously, if you have a broken bone, you don’t want to keep working out until it’s healed.  Likewise, if your arteries are seriously clogged and you are in danger of a heart attack, don’t do anything until you take care of your condition first.  You need to know – or let your doctor help you know – when it is a serious condition or not.

But when your general health is good, and bones are healthy – come to Jung Suwon class, or work out as best you can.  Push yourself.

Most of the time, your body just needs to get back into the habit of moving, and move regularly.  Give it a try!  See how you feel!

If you have been following this blog you know that I have had foot problems for over a year now, and I have been very careful in working out, and I have even gone through periods of not working out at all.  But the rest of my body does not like this and has been coming up with all kinds of aches and pains that I never used to have.

Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim simply recommended I go to class.  So, I am back in class, and I do whatever I am able to and striving to do more.  I can’t say I am painfree, but I can say that generally speaking, I feel a lot better when I am moving and doing.

My life as a Jung Suwon warrior is great and always full of action and excitement.  I am going to train, no matter what!


Posted by: angelasommers | September 22, 2012

A very unusual business trip

I  haven’t been writing for a long time and I feel a bit guilty.  I have had so much happen in my life and should have kept updating you all!

Here is the reason why:

Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim was selected by the biggest Korean TV station, KBS, for a big documentary, her success story.

So, a production team came, and followed Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim for 12 days straight.  They didn’t mind having to meet her in Burlington, Vermont (to film her humble beginnings in the USA.)  They didn’t mind following her to the Netherlands where she has a branch office of her high-tech company, Lighthouse Worldwide Solutions.  They filmed pretty much everything, from getting ready in the morning, going to work, conducting business and whatever was on Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim’s schedule.

I was privileged enough to be able to be there for the entire filming, travel included, and it was a once in a life time experience.  It is one thing to hear stories of her extremely difficult conditions when she first came to this country – the prejudice, her poverty, where she lived and worked – and it is an entirely different story when you actually see all the places where it happened – including the old, dilapidated trailer that she used to rent and used to be her cherished home and castle,

This is the actual trailer that Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim lived in, when she first came to the USA, on the East Coast

the same bench at a local high school where she sat every single day for a month, just to meet the principle and be allowed to teach Martial Arts.

See the actual Howard Johnson motel where she had her first job, cleaning floors and bathrooms.

This is the Howard Johnson in White River Junction, VT, where Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim had her first job – cleaning bathrooms, kitchens, and scrubbing floors

Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim used to scrub this very floor every day!

When I saw the actual show, streaming on the internet, at 3 am last night, I couldn’t help tears – the story, told through video, was touching my heart, and especially because I feel so much part of Great Grandmaster Tae Yun Kim’s history, her team, her family.

So, a big, heartfelt congratulations Great Grandmaster, and thank you so loving me so much and letting me be part of this outstanding opportunity!


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