MARTIAL ARTS HAS BEEN VERY GOOD TO ME
I am a sixth dan master black belt in taekwondo with over 35 years of experience in teaching martial arts. I have trained at Y. B. Choi's Taekwondo schools. In 2020, Grandmaster (kwanjang nim) Choi retired after teaching nearly 50 years. He is a ninth dan black belt.
He was one of General Choi's, the founder of modern taekwondo, first students.
Training with GM Choi was training in the old school. No pads. No holding back kicks and punches. We expected only one out of a hundred to make it to black belt. And it was true. There are only a handful of us that have made it to master level or higher over the ensusing decades.
My primary instructor was Grandmaster Robert Zuczek, seventh dan, of South River's Jump Tiger Taekwondo. He also recently retired in 2020, but still trains some students near the old school in South River.
He taught me weapons, breaking and how to teach effectively. He continues to teach and guide me. He led me and guided me through countless tournaments to victory and self-discovery.
Under my instructor's guidance, I opened the New Jersey Medical School Taekwondo class (NJMS TKD) when I began medical school in 1986. I was the head instructor there from 1986-1997 while going through my med school, residency and most of my fellowship. It is here that I worked out the foundations of my lectures and seminars on martial arts and personal growth.
I moved to the Jersey Shore in 1997 and began my private practice. While I began forming my solo practice in plastic surgery, I formulated a plan for a private studio. My plan was to only accept students of my choosing, not charge a fee for my instruction, and to develop a master's course of education to raise my students to epitomize the tenants of taekwondo.
My personal style includes a very clinical and scientific look at the martial arts as a way of defining the intuitive and esoteric concepts of ki (chi), energy, and power in technique. My goal is to teach in a moral, kind, and intense way to allow all my students to be able to take their training out of the dojang and into each aspect of their lives and careers.
I started the Bhattacharya Taekwondo as a private studio of ten students in 2001. The ages range from 4–63-year-old students. I have had the privilege and honor to have now trained dozens of black belts, several to advanced dan, and currently training a few to master level. I now also have the joy of teaching the next generation of my older students.
I have learned that the more I teach, the more I learn from my students and their life. I am inspired by those that attend my class and am still awed at their progress and accomplishments.
TEACHING HAS BEEN MY LIFE
Throughout my career, I have taught. Not just martial arts, but also medicine and surgery. While I was developing my private practice, I spent the first five years part time teaching at SUNY-Downstate. I truly enjoyed operating and working with the brilliant surgical residents there. I have returned to part time teaching of surgical residents in 2016, now at the Veterans Hospital system. The time I get to spend with my residents has been truly a bright spot in my week. I look forward to speaking with them and guiding them not just in surgery, but also to give them perspective on their upcoming careers.
I also have enjoyed coaching youth sports. I spent the formative years of my three boys coaching them and their teammates in travel soccer and lacrosse. Some of my most important lessons I learned were from my players and parents. This period spanned from 2000-2009.