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February - March 2007

India Sport Scene

Medical Student Masters the Martial Art of Taekwon-Do

by Krishan Ralleigh

Angad Saluja, a fourth year medical student at Bart’s & The London Medical college is also fanatic about his other love, the martial art of Taekwon-Do, a Korean martial art, much in demand among the young people in Britain.

Angad has competed in the Imperial Taekwon-do Association (ITA) National Championships on several occasions as well as tournaments held by other associations such as Global Taekwon-do U.K. in Stratford-upon-Avon with his teammates. He won the silver medal in patterns as a junior in the nationals, but the pinnacle of his career was when, as a black belt, he won two gold medals in the sparring and patterns events in the 2004 ITA championships, making him the national middleweight champion.

His interest in Taekwon-Do developed out of his desire of keeping fit and active physically as well as mentally. Taekwon-Do is one of the most suitable martial arts as it keeps both mind and body in harmony. Angad confesses that in medicine a lot of academic work is essential; and it tends to bring physical inertia. By training in martial art of Taekwon-Do he has been able to energise his body regularly and keeps it in tune with his mind. Gradually, he has been through the grading system and eventually competed in national tournaments. He has received his second degree black belt, and has become a registered instructor with the British Taekwon-Do Council helping out at the De Silva Taekwon-Do Academies, part of Nicholls Taekwon-Do Institute. Now he has opened a school at Barts and the London for other aspirants and has become an International Taekwon-do Federation Tournament Umpire, and aims to continue training for his third degree black belt in the future.

His training used to take a large chunk of his time. While working towards his black belt, he was training at least four times a week; and even more in the summer holidays when most of the tournaments are held. Now that he is in the fourth year of his medical degree course, he finds it hard to train regularly; but teaching twice a week at the Taekwon-Do school at Bart & London.

Angad Saluja believes that training for any martial art is beneficial not only for survival and self-defence; but helps in learning to keep one’s body and aggressive emotions under control. As a medical student he knows that the human body is fragile and it is so easy to cause injury or be injured.

His love for the martial art of his choosing is as great as his desire to be a successful doctor. He likes to continue taking part for the World Championship trials this year; and will also be concentrating for his finals next year.

L to R: Mr Johann de Silva, Angad Saluja & Master Trevor Nicholls

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