Instructor Profile: Sifu Michael Sharma

Age: 36

Age When You Started Training: 11

Most Challenging Training Experience: “I’ve had so many like I’m sure many others but two different times stand out and for different reasons. Physically it was my first Saturday pre-test as a green belt. I remember it was at the beach (same one we as go to now) and I remember being so physically exhausted afterwords that even a week later walking up and down the stairs at my house was such a painful experience because I was still so sore. Mentally, it was after a night of doing our techniques really hard. What made this night uniquely challenging was that I was the youngest student in the class with some ‘old school’ advanced students. I remember coming home bruised and ego battered and wondered if I should continue to train. I was probably only 13 or 14 years old, looking back at it now that night made me a better martial artist.”

What is Your Favorite Part of Training: “Definitely the people. You get to meet and train with so many awesome people from all walks of life in martial arts.”

What is Your Favorite Part of Teaching: “Seeing students get better in all areas of their lives. Many of the students I’ve had the opportunity to train have been with me for years. It’s amazing to see the growth in someone that started out when they were a 4-6 year old little dragon and then continue to train all the way till they graduate from high school and then go off to college.”

What is Your Proudest Martial Arts Achievement: “It used to be winning three world titles in a row and winning the US Open Tournament in Florida. At the time those were really important to me. Now though it’s watching my two sons doing things for the first time or reaching a major milestone.”

What do You Remember Most about Competing?: “It’s funny but the things I remember most are not the actual competition but all the things we experienced outside the competition. All the adventures that took place when we would travel to these competitions is what I remember. The people and the things we would do is what stands out.”

What Advice would You Give to New Students: “Enjoy the process and don’t get caught up in what belt you’re going for. If you come to class, practice and train hard the belts will take care of themselves. Build friendships with other students that will last a lifetime, go to studio events and make memories that you’ll be able to look back on forever and have fun with everything that you do.”

What are Some of Your Martial Arts Goals: “First and foremost to continue to improve myself. If I don’t find ways to improve everyday then I can’t ask that of my students. I want to continue to serve and make a difference in the lives of our students. Finally, I want to help my two boys set and achieve any goals (martial arts or outside of martial arts) that they set for themselves.”

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