Today we’d like to introduce you to Annika Thomas.
Hi Annika, we’re thrilled to have a chance to learn your story today. So, before we get into specifics, maybe you can briefly walk us through how you got to where you are today?
My sister Nickie Wisdom and I, Annika Thomas, started training in TaeKwonDo in 1991, at the age of 10 and 8. Once we became adults and 3rd-degree black belts, we took over the school from our instructor Charles Knight when he retired in 2004 from the Dr.Phillips YMCA school of TaeKwonDo. During that time, we worked our way up the ranks and hold the current rank of 6th-degree black belt headmasters. We were teaching there until 2020, when we decided it was time to start a new journey and pursue a dream of owning our own school.
In March 2020, we had to stop our live training due to Covid, that did not slow us down, we were teaching zoom classes, gave private virtual lessons and even met in a park to continue our training. In August 2020, we finally had our first class under our new name, The Journey TaeKwonDo in Ocoee. We have been going steady with over 20 students and black belts enrolled, We are active in the United States Chung Do Kwan Association and partake in activities such as training seminars, tournaments and conferences.
I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey have been a fairly smooth road?
When we first started our own school, we were renting a space from a dance studio, due to unforeseen circumstances, we were not able to stay there. We were quickly looked for a new place we could rent space from. Being that we were starting from ground zero, we did not have the funds to rent our own space. We were running into problems with the Covid restrictions, which held us back from a few location. Then we stumbled upon another dance studio in Ocoee, Watters school of Irish Dance, the owner said she never rented her space out before but as most small business owners found hardship during the pandemic and was very welcoming us into her studio. She was wanting to help a small business out in the same time we would be able to help her out by renting the studio for a couple nights a week.
Appreciate you sharing that. What else should we know about what you do?
Master Wisdom and I both work at Lake Whitney Elementary school, she has a master’s degree in early childhood special needs and is the Pre-K special needs teacher. I have a degree in automotive technology but at the moment work as a Para in the Pre-K classroom. Twice a week, we teach our TaeKwonDo classes at night.
What quality or characteristic do you feel is most important to your success?
We work very well together as a sister duo. We feed off of each other’s positive energy and that trickles down to the students. We know how to read a student and see what works for them. Also, continually trying to make ourselves better by attending national training conferences, seminars and are present in as many association activities as possible. Leaders are learners and there is always something to improve then give back to our students.
- $75 for once a week class at 90 minutes per class per class
- $100 for twice a week classes at 3 hours per week
- The tuition is per month
- We do offer a family discount to encourage families to do it together.
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: www.thejourneytkd.com
- Instagram: TheJourneyTKD
- Facebook: The Journey TaeKwonDo
- Twitter: TheJourneyTKD
- Yelp: The Journey TaeKwonDo