Luke Allen with his coach, Master Jeremy Reeve (Xavier Taekwondo, Antigonish), wins the Ricoh Sport Makes a Difference Award for 2013. Luke Allen’s journey is a great example of how sport and a dedicated coach can make a difference.
“We feel very proud to be able to explain how taekwondo has made such a difference in our son Luke’s life. Luke is a very energetic 9-year-old boy. At the age of six, he was diagnosed with developmental coordination disorder. This is a disorder that makes it very difficult for Luke to perform both simple fine and gross motor activities. Sports, even simple games of tag, which Luke wanted to participate in, became very frustrating for him, as his body would not coordinate the movements he wanted it to. Luke was extremely frustrated and he didn’t think very much of himself. This was before Luke started taekwondo. Luke had an instant love for taekwondo. Its structure and focus on individual improvement, along with a coach he admired, helped turn his image of himself around. At the age of eight, Luke began going to his occupational therapist with goals he wanted to achieve. He became determined to become the best he could be in taekwondo. Luke’s goals were all focused towards getting better in the sport. His first goal was to learn to tie his belt. After many sessions with his therapist, he could finally do it! This gave him the confidence he needed to learn to tie his shoes. He accomplished this goal after his ninth birthday. He then decided to learn to skip, since they often skip as a warm up in class. After many months, Luke was able to skip as well! The confidence, determination and self-esteem Luke has developed through taekwondo have been life changing for him. He now has the confidence to try anything. He has recently passed his blue stripe belt test, and is working hard towards his blue belt. As Luke’s parents, we are very thankful for all taekwondo has done, and continues to do for our son.” – Loreen et Rob Allen, Luke Allen’s parents