Don’t be an Influencer, Be a Leader.


Parents: who do you want your son or daughter to be? 

In this world, so many kids strive to be TikTok and Instagram “influencers.” Wouldn’t you rather yours put in the time and effort to become a leader who is revered for how much they contribute to society, and not how well they can mimic some dance?

We provide a path to leadership through our Junior Leaders and D.E.L.T.A. Team programs. 

It’s not just about being an instructor. We have kids that are color belts that become junior leaders. What we teach them is how to interact with and be around other people, because that is the first step to being a good leader. As they become black belts and eventually instructors, they also become role models that other students can look up to. 

Of course, students have myself and Master Sharratt to look up to as well. But we’re almost like management. When they got here, we were already the fully-formed leaders we are today.

It’s different with the Junior Leaders and DELTA Team. Other students look up to those guys because they’re students, just like them.

When students see their peers rise through the ranks into positions of authority, it inevitably makes an impression on them. It gives them an ideal to strive for. It gives them hope that they could one day could achieve that level as well. 

That’s because they can! We put people in a position where leadership is well within their reach. Some run with it and become the leaders we always knew they could be. Some can’t handle it. I have had students who joined the Junior Leaders program and it was simply not for them. I could make the argument for some of those guys that they easily could have handled it if their parents were more supportive.

But that’s a different topic for a different post. 

The students that become leaders here also become leaders outside of the dojang. They don’t cower away from speaking in public, or simply speaking to someone they have conflict with. By giving these students leadership roles in class, they support their fellow students, which begets them supporting anyone who needs it throughout the rest of their lives. In turn, the people they help often take the baton and “pay it forward,” so to speak, becoming leaders themselves. 

A great example at our school is Mister James. He often cites his Tae Kwon-Do training as what best prepared him for a public speaking class he took early in his college career. His final grade in that class was a perfect A+. In fact, James also told us that there was a police officer in that same class who would often confide in James and turn to him for help. James was only 19 at the time. 

Sports might uncover some leadership qualities in children, but they don’t often develop them. I believe Tae Kwon-Do can and does develop leaders. One simple explanation is that Tae Kwon-Do is not seasonal, like most sports. We train all year, so our leaders never stop learning how to be better leaders. 

This also develops and reinforces a “long-term” mindset that prevents them from frequently quitting and trying something else, as mentioned in the previous post. 

Also, our leaders start on their path to leadership often at a much younger age than in other sports. They are able to develop those leadership skills while under the “cover” of school, so that when they get out into the workforce, they position themselves to become successful leaders at work as well. 

With strong leadership and character comes a heightened maturity. I can’t even begin to tell you how many times parents mistake our 15 and 16 year old students for 22-23 year olds. 

Employers are finally coming around on the importance of attitude in the workplace. “Hire character, train skill” is a phrase you will hear more and more. 

A B- student with an A+ attitude will go much further in life than an A+ student with a C+ attitude.


Master Gorino’s Tae Kwon-Do offers a trial program for individuals and families in Buffalo, NY and the surrounding areas that allows you to get a feel for the different classes, meet our instructors, and experience our dojang. It’s a great way to see if Tae Kwon-Do is right for you. To learn more or to sign up, visit the Contact Us page or call (716) 836-KICK (5425) and a member of our team will follow up with you on next steps. We look forward to helping you achieve your goals. Pil-Sung!


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