Ripple Effect Martial Arts Podcast

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Podcast 38: Tournaments and Goal-Setting: Helping Kids Reach New Goals

Whether it’s public speaking or any performance in front of a large audience, many of us wonder how well we’d do. Both kids and adults are subject to attacks of the nerves when it comes to public performances, but we all can gain the confidence to step up to the stage and give it our best. This edition of the podcast features a short story about a karate student ready to head to her first tournament, as well as a talk with a teenage black belt whose first tournament experience came at the young age of six. Goal-setting is featured throughout. Enjoy and continue to set your sights on earning top place at the next martial arts tournament!

Podcast 37: Attack of the Gingerbread Ninjas (a Karate Holiday Tale)

Grab some candy corn and gather up somewhere warm for the last podcast of 2023, a little tale from the north pole that involves a little-known secret about Santa's top elves... Hope everyone is looking forward to the new year! Best from all of us at Ripple Effect Martial Arts!

Podcast 36: Karate, Family and Leadership with Hospitality Veteran Chris Green

Mr Chris Green has spent his professional life in hospitality. He's run hotels, resorts, hotel companies and management firms, and the teams he's led have helped guests experience landmark events as well as seen families through natural disasters. Here Chris talks about learning how to lead from difficulty and challenge, and how a mindset of curiosity breeds strong leadership, in business, the martial arts, and life.

Podcast 35: The Wade Family Reflects on Ten Years of Training

Joseph Wade was barely six (or seven?) when he asked his mom (Jennifer) to join karate. This request happened to coincide with the opening of the first Ripple Effect Martial Arts school in Fort Collins, Colorado, in 2013. Now we're ten years on, and the entire family--Mom, Dad, Joseph and sisters Grace and Marilyn have risen to 2nd degree black belt, helping each other and hundreds of other black belt students along the way. Listen to their memories of hardship and leadership in this special ten-year anniversary podcast.

Podcast 34: Ms Allie Hayes and Ripple Effect Black Belts at the Battle of Atlanta

Anyone familiar with the podcast knows Ms Allie Hayes, who recently coached a team of Ripple Effect Martial Arts black belts at the annual Battle of Atlanta, one of the longest-running and most acclaimed martial arts competitions on the planet. Hear Ms Hayes talk about her experience as a coach of top-ranking competitors from Ripple Effect, including meeting one of her heroes, Grandmaster Jhoon Rhee's protege John Chung.

Podcast 33: Mr Tristan Matthew

Parents often ask "if my kid joins karate, what will they learn? What will they gain? Where will they end up?" Now a 3rd-degree black belt, Mr Tristan Matthew started training in elementary school and moved through the ranks as a student, junior instructor, tournament champion, demo team competitor, and leader of the Little Ripples program. Listen to his insights on growing up surrounded by martial arts and martial artists, and the impact that teaching and learning has had on his life.

Podcast 32: Master Alex Jarvis

5th-degree black belt Master Alex Jarvis has spent more than three decades training and teaching martial arts styles that include Shotokan and Karakido karate, American Freestyle Tae Kwon Do, and the Filipino art of Pekiti Tirsia Kali. He’s become a phenomenally talented martial artist and instructor in the process, and it all started with a glow-in-the-dark pair of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle underpants. Get the full story from Master Jarvis on the 32nd edition of the Ripple Effect podcast!

Podcast 31: Grandmaster John G. Worley

Awarded his 10th-degree black belt in 2014, Grandmaster John Worley began his martial arts career in Fort Worth, Texas in the late 1960s, alongside his brother Pat Worley, one of the top karate competitors in the nation. Grandmaster Worley earned his 1st-degree black belt under legendary instructors J. Pat Burleson and Allen Steen, both students of Jhoon Rhee, the “Father of American Tae Kwon Do.” He followed his brother to Washington, D.C. in 1970 to run a Jhoon Rhee Institute school in Annandale, Virginia, training directly under Grandmaster Rhee as an instructor and going on to found National Karate in Minnesota.

Podcast 30: The Ogles

Meet the Ogles, 3rd-degree black belts and the brains and bones behind Ripple Effect Martial Arts’ newest school in Broomfield, Colorado. Mr and Mrs Ogle have trained independently and alongside their kids as martial artists for over a decade, and they share stories of where they began, the challenges of coaching students, and the inspiration to train new black belts.

Podcast 29: The Hunter Becomes the Hunted: Mr Verant Interviews Mr Brady

You’re in for a podcast fest—Mr Bobby Verant puts the Mr Mark Brady’s nose to the grindstone in this (payback) interview on what it means to train, write, teach and create film for the martial arts. Mr Brady is a parent and professional writer and has been schooled by Mr Verant in many different formats. If you’re a black belt aspirant or friend to anyone who trains, please listen in for some perspective on what it’s like to live and work in the martial arts.

Podcast 28: Ms. Emily Fox and Women’s Self-Defense

This podcast is simply straightforward: Martial arts training benefits women. Pre-teens, teens, young women, women of all eras. Ms. Fox provides a testament to how black belt training keeps women as safe as possible. Awareness is a key, and self-awareness (including self-esteem and self-worth) is essential to a person’s health and thriving in the course of life. In terms of strengthening physical as well as mental balance, Ms. Fox speaks to her own experience over the black belt journey as it affects her life and the lives of other women.

Podcast 27: Mr Worth and Ms Hayes

How does karate help kids grow up? Relate to other people? Teach kids? Earn a degree? These are all topics that Ms Allie Hayes and Mr Cole Worth address in the latest Ripple Effect Martial Arts podcast. These black belts talk about past embarrassments, martial arts accomplishments, and the challenges and rewards of teaching kids how to step out on the stage and present themselves to the world. We also get into painting, behavioral therapy, neurology and computer engineering. Yes indeed. Ever wanted to know what black belt training can turn into, check into this.

Parents, Nurses, Teachers and Students Against Bullying: Martial Artists in the Making

“Spinning [kicks] are illegal.” “Things you’ll encounter in life are very unexpected.” These are the ideas discussed in this podcast, which invokes the thoughts of two neighboring parents of young kids in the midst of Black Belt training. One mom’s a nurse and photographer, one’s a dad who’s vigilant about his son’s progression into the world. “The exercise is very good,” Ms. Laura Greene says. Mr. Bashur agrees: “When you stop moving, that’s when you get old. [Ripple Effect] keeps you moving.” Listen on for a true testimonial m two Black Belt parents.

Episode 25: Grandmother and Grandson, Stories from the Karate Floor

Mrs. Carlota Ponds and her grandson Mekhi (age 4) have been involved with Ripple Effect Martial Arts’ Little Ripples program for just a year, but she says the benefits have been amazing. That’s not just for Mekhi, either. Learning legit punches and kicks and blocks has helped reinforce his natural inclination to protect his sister. Grandpa’s karate practice with Mekhi has helped the older gentleman’s strength, balance and flexibility. And the entire Ripple Effect community has boosted Mekhi’s confidence and helped him make new friends. Hear Mrs. Carlota’s praise of her future black belt grandson as well as her own incredible backstory in Episode 25 of the Ripple Effect Martial Arts podcast!

Episode 23: How Karate Helps Kids Overcome Fear and Gain Confidence

A couple hundred years ago, Englishman William Blake wrote a volume of poetry titled “Songs of Innocence, Songs of Experience.” No one speaks the truth like the innocence of youth. But a life lived with experience, challenges, and trials develops a more mature understanding in the heart, body and mind. That’s an introduction to Annalise, who started training to be a black belt before she even began kindergarten. Four years on, she earned her black belt rank this past May, culminating in a three-day black belt test in Estes Park. Here Annalise talks about how martial arts has helped her speak out, challenge herself, support and lead a team of kids and adults, and persevere.

Episode 22: Dr. Stacie Johns: How Karate Helps Raise Kids into Safe, Sound, Flexible Adults

Karate creates leaders. That's the goal. And take it from a graduate in medicine of the University of North Carolina--Chapel Hill, Dr. Stacie Johns, 2nd degree black belt and mother of another. Hear her perspective on the benefits of black belt training, from flexibility and strength-building (for adults) and leadership training (for kids and adults and all).

Episode 21: Master Kyle Galloway

Master Galloway is a consummate martial artist, with a 6th degree black belt in American Freestyle Tae Kwon Do, a blue belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, and the title of Guru in Pekiti Tirsia Kali. He’s also a respected teacher, with hundreds of students spanning generations of black belts who still call him their inspiration. Listen to Master Galloway share his thoughts on helping families who suffered from the recent Colorado wildfires, how martial arts helps kids expel negative energy, and how his program at Success Martial Arts in Louisville, Colorado helps build strong relationships and community.

Episode 20: Zac Chase, Karate Dad

Zac Chase holds a Masters degree from the School of Education at Harvard, a Principal's license, and currently serves as librarian of the St. Vrain public school system. But his most vaunted accomplishment is in the parenting of his two kids, ages 10 and 12, who have recently earned their green belts in karate. Zac talks about his kids' motivation, the promise of a safe environment for kids to grow, learn and thrive, and how karate instructors serve as partners for parents who want their kids to become great role models.

Episode 19: Mary Nhin, Author of “Ninja Life Hacks”

Author Mary Nhin conceived her children’s series of “Ninja Life Hacks” books by telling stories to quell the fears of her sons when they were little. These are extremely relatable tales, helping kids to face fears, charge out into life and lead others out of dark, small places into the bright, wide world. In teaching kids how to develop leadership traits and black belt character, we use Mary’s Ninja Life Hacks books to help bring abstract concepts—bravery, respect, greed, anger—into context. Hear Mary talk about the influence of storytelling on developing strong character in kids.

Episode 18: Martial Arts, Leadership, and Life as a Stellar Six Year Old: The Glenn Family

Petitions. Meetings. Leadership. Sounds like a the docket for a chief member of the House of Lords. Well, that might just be where Aspen Glenn is headed. She’s six years old, an orange belt in karate, and a force of will everywhere she goes. In this episode, we talk with Aspen, her mom Montana, and dad Jacob about reading, school, music and martial arts. BONUS: Find out two fascinating facts about Aspen (trees, that is). Stay tuned through the end of this awesome dialogue with a future black belt!

Episode 17: Firefighting, Ferocity, and Family with Bill and Connie Fisher

Bill and Connie Fisher, along with with their two kids, signed up for karate not quite knowing how it would impact their lives. They’ve since earned 2nd degree black belts and continue to train, leading by example and never looking back. Oh and did we mention Connie was born in Taiwan and grew up in the U.S. working in her parents’ restaurants, and Bill is a second-generation firefighter stationed in Fort Collins, Colorado, with a couple decades of rescue experience under his belt? Hear their stories and get a candid view of black belt family life in this episode of the Ripple Effect Martial Arts podcast!

Episode 16: Martial Arts and Children’s Mental Health

How do we help kids stay strong in mind and body in these challenging times? In this episode we’re talking with Heidi Baskfield and Dr. Bruno Anthony of Colorado’s Partners for Children’s Mental Health, who advise on what you need to know about pressures kids face and how parents, teachers and martial arts instructors can help. Serious, fascinating insight from two fighters on the front for healthier kids!

Episode 14: Martial Arts and the Psychology of Well Being with Ms. Allie Hayes

An artist. A recent college grad. An advocate for healthy balance and self advocacy, especially for young women. A quintessential martial artist, leader, and competitor. That’s a blunt summary of the accomplishments of Ms. Allie Hayes, 3rd-degree black belt in American Freestyle Taekwondo and co-leader of the competition team at Ripple Effect Martial Arts. Listen to Allie’s honest thoughts on how martial arts can help young people—people of any age—overcome difficulties and self doubt.

Episode 13: Mr. Olmstead

From looking at cool martial arts silhouettes in the Yellow Pages as a kid, to earning multiple black belts and teaching Tae Kwon Do, Mr. Olmstead lives and breathes martial arts. He’s also a professional graphic designer, a webmaster and all around fun guy. Listen to why he feels there’s value in taking a hit and how he’s always striving to improve as a black belt.

Episode 12: Mr. AJ Tufano, Karate Dad

Do you glow when you become a ninja [See the movie “The Last Dragon”]? Can you learn from your kids? What can your kids teach you? Here’s the perspective of a real-life Karate Dad when it comes to training with your kids in the martial arts.

Episode 11: Master Jan Lappin

A degree in Psychology. An affinity for world cultures and languages. Black belts in traditional Korean and Japanese martial arts. Author with an office full of swords. These are just a few aspects describing Master Jan Lappin, founder and master instructor of Middleburg Martial Arts in Florida. She has a lot to say about how martial arts impacts the life success of kids and adults, and how it inspires people to achieve their goals. Why practice martial arts as a kid? Why practice martial arts as an adult? How to use a cane for self defense? It’s all here on the Ripple Effect Martial Arts podcast. Listen in.

Episode 10: The Black Belt Journey with Mr Bobby Verant

Dreams come true. That’s what earning a black belt, in some measure, means to the lot of us. Just ask Mr. Bobby Verant, recently promoted to head instructor of the Ripple Effect Martial Arts Johnstown School. If you’re into trivia, listen up: What’s Mr. Bobby’s stage name? Do Tonka Trucks come from a lake community just outside the Twin Cities? And how did Karate Kid Daniel LaRusso influence Mr. Bobby to move out to Colorado and start his Black Belt journey? Find out the answers to all these and more in the latest podcast.

Episode 9: Master Mom, Amanda Olson

Amanda Olson, aka “Master Mom,” is Master Instructor of Olson’s Martial Arts Academy in Johnson City, Tennessee. She’s also an author and a frequent guest on television, radio and other media, answering questions from parents about how to raise kids and inspire obedience, respect and focus at school and home. Want some advice on parenting kids in a crazy world? Ask Master Mom.

Episode 8: Ms. Lara Lauritz – School Psychologist, Mother, Martial Artist

Lara Lauritz’ karate autobiography could be called “Momma Needs to Kick Stuff: Why a School Psychologist Wants to Earn Her Black Belt”. Ms. Lauritz has been a karate student for four years and will soon test for certified Black Belt with her youngest son. She’s also been working with elementary-age kids for more than 25 years and has many personal and professional insights into the connection between martial arts and effective learning for kids. And just to spice things up, she talks about how karate combinations are like water slides. Seriously. Tune in for some thoughts from a karate mother like no other.

Episode 7: Mr Julius Tabert: What it Means to Be a Black Belt

Mr. Julius Tabert is a black belt of the old school. Member of the German National karate competition team in the 1980s, he grew up grinding the proverbial 12 miles uphill (both ways) to train in traditional martial arts. He went on to win international kumite championships, and has since become an American citizen and raised two kids through to black belt. Mr. Tabert continues to embody the spirit of a karateka in family, business, and life philosophy.

Episode 6: Mr Ben Stott

2nd-degree black belt and Ripple Effect Martial Arts instructor Mr Ben Stott gets personal on his own Black Belt journey. He talks about what it’s like to train as a family, how he got a feel for karate as a (once) “unathletic” white belt, sparring against other styles, and how he gained confidence through the martial arts. And Cobra Kai. And historic Cameros. Dive in!

Episode 5: Master Maggie Messina

Master Maggie Messina, Brooklyn native, 7th degree black belt, and founder of TaeCole Taekwondo in Albertson, New York, shares her thoughts on martial arts competition, women in the marital arts, teaching kids who’ve become Harvard grads, and the importance of clean bathrooms.

Episode 4: Growing up with Karate with Mr Joel Thompson

Mr Joel Thompson is a 3rd-degree Black Belt under the Jhoon Rhee system of American Freestyle Taekwondo. He’s also a college student studying education, and a self-taught drummer and musician. We talk about what it was like to grow up with marital arts, the lineage of Grandmaster Rhee, and what to do if you burst into tears on the karate tournament floor.

Episode 3: A Karate Education with Ms Davenport

What’s the value of strength, respect and focus for kids? Just ask a teacher. Ms Liz Davenport, a 2nd-degree Black Belt with an academic and professional background in elementary school education, shares perspectives on what it means to train, teach and parent in the martial arts.

Episode 2: Sparring with Mr Wagoner

Mr. Andrew Wagoner, former EMT, 3rd-degree Black Belt and head instructor of Ripple Effect Martial Arts in Longmont, Colorado, talks about sparring techniques, strategy and safety.

Episode 1: Devin Arkfeld Interview

Episode 1 of the Ripple Effect Martial Arts Podcast features Devin Arkfeld of Denver, Colorado, a 5th-degree black belt in the Jhoon Rhee style of Tae Kwon Do. Mr Arkfeld talks about what it means to earn a black belt, teaching martial arts to kids, nunchaku competition, and his own martial arts inspirations.

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