Owen McCabe, 1st Dan, Sept. 24, 2009

The following was submitted to the Hometown Advantage for the October release.

Owen McCabe of Worcester earns 1st Degree Black belt

On September 24, 2009, Taekwon-Do International recognized 14 year old Worcester resident Owen McCabe as a certified black belt. Having trained diligently since March of 2006, Owen was invited to test by Oneonta Taekwon-Do instructor Ray Mannion. In addition to his training in Oneonta, he attended camps and seminars under Grandmaster Suk Jun Kim, a 9th degree black belt and founder of Taekwon-Do International.

For promotion to black belt, Owen was required to run 2 miles, demonstrate complex kicking combinations, perform several patterns, compete in 2 rounds of contact sparring, demonstrate 3 board breaking techniques, and complete a written and oral examination. In addition to physical requirements, students are required to explain historical and philosophical concepts related to their training. These include the tenets of Taekwon-Do which are Courtesy, Integrity, Perseverance, Self-control, and Indomitable spirit.

For his board breaking requirement, Owen chose to break 3 boards with a spinning back kick, 2 boards with a reverse punch, and a jumping front kick to break one board suspended 7 feet off the floor.

“Taekwon-Do training develops a great deal of power in the practitioner and this manifests itself physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. You can’t break 3 boards just because you have big muscles. It requires accuracy, speed, and knowledge that only come through disciplined training”, said Mr. Mannion. “Promotion tests are a unique experience. Our students share a special bond. We train together, we support each other, and we earn a great deal of respect from our classmates. It’s something nobody can take away from us. Seeing a fellow student earn a new belt is almost as fun as earning one yourself.”

Owen owes a great deal of gratitude to the support of his brothers Guaire and Cael and especially his parents Tom and Priscilla. Travelling to Oneonta 3 times per week consumes a large amount of gas and limits time for other commitments.

As a registered black belt in Taekwon-Do International, Owen carries an identification card and certificate with worldwide recognition. Wherever life may take him, there will surely be a Taekwon-Do school close by that will honor his achievement and welcome him among their ranks.

“Black belt is just the beginning actually,” said Mr. Mannion, a 3rd degree black belt. “It means he has developed the skills he needs to begin learning mastery. I’m sure Owen will be happy to start the next phase of his training and I hope it remains a lifelong pursuit.”
Pictures and video available at http://oneontatkd.com

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