Master Arsol Jnr
It is with great pleasure today we know one of the most representative figures of ITF Taekwondo in the world, we talk to Master Jo Arsol JR for some
questions. , President of ITFUNION Asia and
Chairman, of the Philippines
Good morning Master, can you tell us how you grew up with the passion of Taekwondo?
Since I was a child I have always been interested in martial arts, trying to grasp their secrets and Characteristics.
Subsequently, to be able to approach and have the attention of my father, Grand Master Arsol Senior, a man with a very severe and austere figure, and make him proud of me, I embarked on the path of the TKD ITF under the guidance of his brother and under his gaze.
I used to live the dojang from monday to sunday, owned by my family.
My father was very demanding, making me work hard and making me study the forms, which I learned by applying myself several hours a day, but still without the necessary maturity to know the meaning of each technique I performed.
After earning my black belt, I finally became my father’s student.
When did you start teaching TKD?
At the age of 13 I started looking after my father with the children Gradually I acquired such experience that I could also teach adult students.
I began to feel the passion for teaching since adolescence. My imagination as a young and enterprising boy prompted me to want to act according to my philosophy, so I also wanted to try to approach TKD WTF, following my own path, even without my father’s explicit consent.
When did you feel the need for a Dojang of your own? After a few years of following my father, I started teaching as a teacher and acquired a good number of students, while continuing to follow my father’s lessons.
How has the relationship with your father changed over time? The relationship has always been difficult, in fact at a certain point, due to rebellion or misunderstanding, I left the Philippines, convinced that I would find my way. He was never a man to compliment me on my progress, but I’m sure he was pleased with my level and made me feel his affection in his own way.
I didn’t realize that his very rigid attitude helped me grow up with values and a positive formation, to face the world, and furthermore, I had the opportunity to hang out with him more than my brothers. When my father died, I realized that the greatest legacy he left me was his precious life teachings.
Fortunately, before his death, I had the privilege of being able to reconcile with him and to have a serene and affectionate
Memory. I was very happy that after his death, the Federation decided to award him the 9 DAN, in honor of what he
represented for many students and many Masters, and being his son is a source of pride and responsibility.
-When did you decide to come to Italy?
It was a random decision In 1995, on my birthday May 17th, I came to participate in the World Cup which was held in Sardinia.
I stayed in Italy with the opportunity to work with my relatives, and subsequently I opened a dojang, in which I met the partner of my life, as well as the mother of my daughters, and I created my family and my new roots here , in Milan.
And how does Master Jo Arsol carry out his activity today?
Today I have 2 gyms in which for almost 30 years I have been lucky enough to teach TKD ITF and kick boxing, bringing dozens of young people closer to martial arts and the principles that distinguish them, and I carry out my role as president of ITF Union Asia with pleasure and devotion. as well as my figure of Chairman in the activities of my country of origin, the Philippines, to maintain the strong bond that I feel in my heart with the people to which I belong.
How does the growth of ITFU Italy continue?
In Italy, ITFU was born a few years ago, but we are working hard to lay the solid foundations of a fraternal and friendly collaboration involving as many schools as possible.
A tangible sign of our desire to be together is the recent occasion of meeting with the President GM Dalton, who honored us with his presence in the month of January 2023, which was a splendid occasion share the great passion of the TKD ITF.
-How do you see TKD in 20 years?
Given that in 20 years I will be very old, my vision is linked to the foundations of the ITF UNION, which is moved by the principle of brotherhood, freedom and no ego, united but without chains. and I hope to
convey the same feelings to my students and to all my friends who, like me, have decided to embark on this journey.
-Do your daughters also continue to follow the path traced by you?
Yes, they too (Sarah Jane, Giulia and Greta) practice taekwondo with results that make me proud of them and assist me in teaching.
When I look at them, it reminds me of a little JoJo watching his father and I’m moved,
What will the next events be? Are you planning any special events or occasions?
I will be in Poland for a technical update seminar in February and I will continue my teaching activities in the gyms of Milan, as well as my collaboration with all the masters and instructors of ITFU Italy.
A thought for young people and all those who want to undertake the study of TKD Approach TKD with lightness and
serenity, as it is written in our foundations and in General CHOI’s vision, commit yourself to achieving ever more challenging goals, be an example in your behavior, always helping those in need, in the pursuit of peace.
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