Martial Arts Can Change Your Life-Check out my story | TOP Martial Arts and Fitness for Life
ACCESS OUR SCHEDULE
& EXCLUSIVE WEB SPECIAL

Secure your spot and get started today with our EXCLUSIVE offer!

ACCESS OUR SCHEDULE
& EXCLUSIVE WEB SPECIAL

Secure your spot and get started today with our EXCLUSIVE offer!

Kathryn Shasha reviewed TOP Martial Arts and Fitness for Life
5
via Facebook

When I needed to get in shape for television pilot season; Ellen was the person that drove me to be my very best above any other trainer I ever had. I had the privilege of being trained by her during my Kick Boxing Ultimate Training (KUT program). She not only taught us to perform the movements safely, she motivated us to get the results we wanted. And above all...she always made it fun! She has an amazing personality and her nonstop energy is contagious. I looked forward to every class. I HIGHLY recommend her for any fitness/Karate program. She is the best!

Krista Gambino-Seymour reviewed TOP Martial Arts and Fitness for Life
5
via Facebook

My kids began taking karate about 5 years ago. My kids are not at all into sports or competitive but I am so glad they went. They grew so much in their confidence and inner strength. This was in part of their Masters and teachers. Master Ellen, however, was one who took my daughter under her wing. She recognized immediately when she was feeling anxious or sad. Her pep talks were so heartfelt and meaningful to her and for that, I am incredibly grateful.

It was not much longer when I joined in school’s KUT program. It was such a motivating group and the instructors were so encouraging and supportive. There was a point when I was feeling very discouraged about my progress (lack of). Master Ellen immediately pulled me aside and helped me through that period. Her words of encouragement and her belief in me stays with me to this day.

I am so glad she is taking this amazing venture. Master Ellen is truly gifted and a wonderful individual with a caring soul. She is an excellent and fun (my kid’s words) instructor.

Karen Vega reviewed TOP Martial Arts and Fitness for Life
5
via Facebook

Ellen is one of the most kind, caring, determined and unforgettable people you will ever meet. I met Ellen in 2003 when she was my daughter Airiel’s Hapkido instructor. Ellen was a consistent instructor during the 10 years Airiel trained. While Airiel was training for her Black belt Ellen would come in and work extra hours to make sure she was ready for her test. There were many times Airiel would have given up if it wasn’t for Ellen helping and guiding her through. Over the years Ellen has become more than an instructor for us; she is someone we can both truly call a friend.

Deb Trevelin reviewed TOP Martial Arts and Fitness for Life
5
via Facebook

Three years ago I was looking for a fitness class that was not a gym. My cousin recommended that I try the KUT program with her. I had never done kickboxing, but a couple of my friends had and thought I would like it. They were right.
That’s where I met Master Ellen.

She has great patience in showing the correct form and would come over to my bag to “fix” me if I was doing something incorrectly. Encouraging me by letting me start at my own pace yet motivating me to keep up with her once I figured out what I was doing.

When I started I could not do a full push up, with the training motivation my highest was 42!!

Her energy invigorates, motivates and encourages you to do your best…. You will feed off her energy!!

Airiel Vega reviewed TOP Martial Arts and Fitness for Life
5
via Facebook

I started training in 2003, when I was six years old, so I have known Ellen for most of my life. She is one of the most amazing people you will ever meet and I am lucky to say that she is more than just my instructor, she is family. Throughout the years of training, she pushed me when I needed it most and helped me every time I asked. She trained me through both of my black belt tests and I know I couldn’t have done it without her. She didn’t just look at me as a student, but as a friend and it made the world of a difference to me. She makes you feel like you’re her number one priority and ensures that you’re at your fullest potential. Anyone who meets or works with Ellen is lucky because she will have a huge positive impact on your life.

Request Information

Blog

Our latest news & thoughts

Martial Arts Can Change Your Life-Check out my story

Martial arts tremendously impacted my life in such a positive way and it can have a profound impact on yours! I didn’t start at age 4 or 5. I started at 18 years old. I had a job. I could pay for myself and I could sign the waiver to train-2 things my parents were unwilling to do. I had been bullied in school. I had a father who made our home life extremely volatile. To say it mildly, I lacked self-confidence, self-worth and I was filled with enormous fear. I hated trying new things, going new places and worst of all meeting new people. I was extremely shy. People thought I was rude or stuck up because I would not talk in social situations with new people. It was not because of that, it was because I felt I had nothing worthy to contribute to the conversation; I was socially awkward. I just wanted to not be seen-disappear. Plus, I was anxious and extremely tired from the constant anxiety and fear all the time.

Back then, there were not a lot of karate schools around. I knew someone that was a Black Belt from the karate school in our town from my High School. He had so much confidence and was so outgoing. I admired those qualities. He had gone off to college so he would not be there. I wouldn’t know a soul there. I was terrified of going into that karate school for the first time but there was something inside me driving me to want to change how I felt about myself. Would I be laughed at? Would I be able to do the kicks, punches, and techniques required of me? What if I make an ass of myself? There will be all these people staring at me, new people I never met. My Mother made me take my older sister with me. The last thing my Mother said to us before we left for the class was don’t get hurt, your father will kill me if he knows you are going there. Great, more fear. Crazy I can remember that like it was yesterday even though it was over 30 years ago.

We walk up all the stairs to the school. The school was on the third floor in a circa late 1800’s building. So it wasn’t even like we could sit outside the place and look inside through the windows to know what to expect. There was no internet site with photos to check the place out because there was no internet yet! Holy cow, am I really doing this? I felt like throwing up! We come to the top of the 6th flight of stairs to a desk with a man sitting behind the desk. There were chairs crammed in this area and all kinds of duffle bags and shoes. I was ready to turn around and high tail it out of there. Grandmaster Dave Wheaton asked us if we were there to try a class. We sheepishly said yes. Through the door I could see that it opened up into a large training area with hard wood floors. There were a lot of people in there dressed in their uniforms with all different color belts. We filled out our forms, signed our waivers, and before I could make a run for it, I was ushered into the training area. I thought to myself, ok, I will learn a few things to protect myself but a Black Belt or even any colored underbelt, no way. The class is called to attention, we are directed where to stand, we are being checked out by all the other students. I laughed nervously to myself, “we are the newbies”. We go through the stretches and warm ups. We are then directed into the back of the room. A Black Belt is assigned to us to show us the basic stances and beginner kicks and punches. My sister and I laughed so hard that night because it was so awkward and new but so much fun!!!! Kicking and punching that target; it was so empowering. I realized how much anger I had built up inside me. I felt so light for the first time in forever, feeling the anxiety at bay for a while. To learn the beginning self-defense escapes, made me feel more confident, less fearful. By the end of that class I was hooked. All the fear I had about the other students laughing at us were for nothing. Everyone was so supportive and friendly!

Fast forward more than 30 years, I am the instructor greeting the new students on their incredible journey. I am extremely compassionate for the new students and make them feel welcome because I know how it is walking in for the first time. I make sure that the other students make our new students feel welcome. There is no ego, it is just my way of giving back to people the immense gifts that were given to me through my training in martial arts. I now have self-confidence, I now have self-worth. I have healthy amounts of anxiety and fear. I don’t have buried anger. I can enter a room and strike up a conversation with the first person I meet. I can speak up at a work meeting for my ideas. I can and actually enjoy getting up and speaking in front of people. All of these things were a result of my training in martial arts and I have figured out ways to incorporate these skills into martial arts drills. Having gone through it, understanding it, helps me make a better experience for my students. What took me many years to achieve, will be quicker for my students because I have figured it out already.

If you ever were thinking about trying martial arts, please do it. Do it for yourself, do it for your family, do it for the world because with confidence and fear at bay who knows what amazing things you will accomplish in your lifetime. It is never too late to start. You are never too old to start. I have a female student who started at the age of 49 because she always wanted to do it but thought it was only for kids and she LOVES it and is doing AMAZING at it!!! It is for everyone! We have students including me with different injuries that we modify the training for. We have had students of all ages. You don’t have to get in shape to start. Martial arts will help you build a stronger body and is a great form of fitness. It is actually one of the best because you are constantly engaging the mind as well as moving the body. It helps make your body more limber through the stretching. Best of all, Hapkido, the art I teach, is extremely practical for real world situations standing and even if the situation ends up on the ground.

Don’t do it someday. I learned last year someday is not a guarantee, today is what we have. So do it Today!
Take care and Live Your TOP Life!!!!!

Master Ellen Reichelt
TOP Martial Arts and Fitness For Life