About Leo Maguire
My introduction to Taekwon-Do started when, like so many parents, I took my son to class. After the first few weeks the instructor suggested that I join in the class myself and that was it, I was hooked!
I enjoyed not only the training, but the comradeship of the other students. As my skill level improved and I advanced through the different belts, I started to help out at class as an assistant instructor and it was a natural progression of the process to start teaching my own students in my own classes on a part time basis.
In 2009 I was made redundant from my full time job as an engineer and I decided to turn my part time passion for Taekwon-Do into my new full time career. With my full attention now focused on Taekwon-Do, I could devote the time needed to promote the sport across Northern Ireland.
I now run the largest group of Taekwon-Do schools in Northern Ireland. I am currently the European veteran silver medallist and Northern Ireland National ITF Coach. I have led the Northern Ireland Team to success at both National and International level with current National, European and World champions among my group; all of whom are now instructors within my business.
I believe strongly that following the teachings of the founder of Taekwon-Do, General Choi Hong Hi, has allowed me to produce excellence students of our sport and my instructors and I consider it a privilege to have the opportunity to pass our knowledge on to the next generation of students.
I am honoured to be the President of the International Taekwondo Federation Northern Ireland (ITF N.I.) and President of the United Kingdom Taekwon-Do Council Northern Ireland (UKTC N.I.).
About the United Kingdom Taekwon-Do Council Northern Ireland (UKTC NI)
As a group, we currently teach approximately 900 students weekly over 63 classes, keeping my three full time and several part time instructors very busy.
We now host several events each year in Northern Ireland including:
- Northern Ireland Junior Taekwon-Do Championships.
- Instructor and Umpire Courses
- I. National Squad Training in conjunction with sports science experts.
- Regional Championships
UKTC NI enjoys the position of being affiliated to the true ITF organisation as recognised by the International Olympic Committee (IOC). UKTCNI clubs follow the ITF syllabus and are closely affiliated to Senior Master Peter Harkess of our parent association the UKTC. Master Harkess is also a Member of the ITF Executive Board.
About Little Tiger Cubs
In 2010 through our association, United Kingdom Taekwon-Do Council (UKTC), we introduced Little Tiger Cubs to Northern Ireland which is a ‘Learn Through Play’ programme for children 3-5 years old promoting fitness and confidence and building the core skills that every child needs. This has proved successful and as a group we are focused to expand both Taekwon-Do and Little Tiger Cubs even further across Northern Ireland in the coming year. Little Tiger Cubs has increased our student catchment and allows for a smooth transition of students from the kids classes into mainstream Taekwon-Do. We have recently had a good level of success with exploring classes specifically for students with special needs in conjunction with local Autism groups and we are keen to see how that develops over the next few months.
(Interview from August 2013 )