Grand Master Donato Nardizzi
Grand Master Nardizzi is the highest ranking Taekwon-do affiliate achieving the rank of 9th degree, making him one of the few Grand Masters in the UK. GM Donato Nardizzi has dedicated over 40 years of his life to Taekwon-do, beginning at the young age of 17 and is now one of the few Grand Masters in the world. During his early days of his training he was taught by the founder of Taekwon-do, General Choi Hong Hi, where his skills and techniques were acknowledged and often used for demonstrations. His passion for Taekwon-do led him to leave his job as a physics teacher and pursue a profession as an instructor, to which he has thoroughly enjoyed.
GM Nardizzi undertook a project to which he spent five years of his life creating a program for kids to be taught by the International Taekwon-do Federation (ITF) which would help develop children with real-life situations and learning skills, such as telling time, organizational skills and stranger danger. As a result, he produced a comprehensive book and grading system to allow children to learn and progress through Taekwon-do, which will prepare them to become independent in the future. The program which is now known as the Kids Program is currently being taught all over the world by the ITF, to which GM Nardizzi travels the world giving seminars to teach instructors in other countries the methods of educating children.
The Internation Taekwon-do Federation England is responsible for the decision making of all Taekwon-do related affairs in England, to which Grand Master Nardizzi had led from 2011-2016. Having been acknowledged for his work in the ITF through his endeavours to reform the leadership towards an unbiased entity and unsuccumb to despotism, he won his seat through unanimous decision. Under his reign, he achieved a massive amount of success through his creation of a new charter and bilaws, resulting in greater democracy and a shift away from totalitarianism; an issue which had ensued in the past. As a result, the membership groups grew from 4 to 20 in the space of 5 years and his laws keep ITF England democratic to this day.
Being the youngest Grand Master in the world and devoting his life to teaching and his work with the youth and community, he has received many acknowledgements and accolades. The greatest of which would be his selection for Olympic Torch Bearer in the 2012 London Games. The Olympic Torch bearing was given for his excellent work given to the community and his commitment to Taekwon-do, being able to run alongside some of the greatest contributors to sport.
Seeing his students as family, GM Nardizzi cares deeply about the wellbeing and development of his students which is why he focuses on providing the best quality service possible without cutting corners. He disagrees with modern martial arts providing a poor service and complimenting students with poor technique to encourage their continual training, but rather provides critical criticism to enhance the students’ knowledge. He also provides all Taekwon-do information for free on his Youtube channel for free with high quality production, spending many hours filming and editing for no personal benefit. To see this channel please click the link below.
Sadly, in June 2017 GM Nardizzi had lost 4 students in his Kensington school to the Grenfell fire: mainly those of a young age. This travesty had caused indescribable grief to not only himself, but all those who knew the children and parents in the Kensington school. However, their grief was unparrel to the families of those involved whose suffering is unimagainable and unrepremendable. Out of support of the survivors and families involved, GM Nardizzi and the whole Taekwon-do community raised over 50 thousand pounds for the families of the victims involved as a way of showing their care and support. If you’d like to hear more about this story click here:
Alex Nardizzi is the oldest son of GM Nardizzi, who shared his father’s enthusiasm to the martial art as he began his training in Taekwon-do at the young age of five. He has risen up the ranks of Taekwon-do to 5th Degree and is one of the youngest of his ranks in the UK, having dedicated the majority of his life to training the martial art. Alex enjoys the competitive side of the martial art and participates in the tournaments representing England. He is a former European champion in power, which is given for board breaking. He continues to teach and guide new students using his competitive Taekwon-Do experience.
Jason Ogden is an instructor who runs the Junior class on the Thursday. He has trained in martial-arts since the age of 14, doing Thai Boxing, Muay Thai, and Korean Kickboxing. He is also the official coach who is in charge of training the Taekwon-do Impact team for large-scale competitions such as the world cup. He runs regular squad sessions to prepare the competitors for national and international competitions. The squad sessions are open to all students yellow belt and above who wish to participate in the competitive side of the martial-art.