Each individual affected by spondylitis has their own unique story. We at SAA believe that each and every story can be a source of inspiration and empowerment. We’d love your story as well! Send it to us at Programs@spondylitis.org
By Teresa Mussmann
Tuesday, August 27, 2019
The first time I walked into a tae kwon do class, I walked in with my cane and my little dog. Master Evan Nixon, the owner of Mellennia Tae Kwon Do, thought I was just there to watch, which I kind of was. As someone living with spondyloarthritis, I never thought that I’d be able to do it.
But he said I could start easy and take it as far as I could, so I started. I ended up having so much fun that the pain took a back burner for a while. Then I started going up in the belts, and then it was so exciting that I had gone that far! I started to lose weight and get in shape. I was getting my balance back, which I hadn’t had in a while.
I still walk with my cane sometimes, but Master Nixon is really an awesome teacher and he knows how to work with my disability. I have so much fun at class and everyone is so nice, it’s like I have a whole family right there at the dojo. I do push myself a little farther than I should sometimes (well, a lot of times!). I’ve been doing tae kwon do for about a year now. I’ve got my high yellow belt now – my third belt that I’ve gotten. I probably will never make it to black belt, but I’m going to keep doing it until I can’t.
Tae kwon do has a lot of benefits for me. It isn’t a cure, and it doesn’t get rid of the pain, but sometimes some things are just so much fun and so enjoyable that you don’t care about the pain for a minute – not until you get home, anyway!
You should always stay active, even if tae kwon do isn’t your thing. The stronger you make yourself, the better you will be.
Other posts by Teresa Mussmann
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