See What Real Students Are Saying About Us…

  • Great place to learn martial arts.  Master Ray is very good and dedicated instructor.  Excellent place to get in shape! 
Comments: Y.G. Light Blue Belt.  Posted 7/17/2013
  • This School is truly something special!  You can tell that Master Ray is incredibly passionate about what he does and is fantastic with the kids!  I would highly recommend this school!
Comments by: Makenna T.  Black Belt. Posted 7/17/2013
  • Akyi Martial Arts is the place to be if you want to train for martial arts.  This dojang is open almost everyday til late evenings which makes it convenient for most of us to come and train.  Master Ray is always welcoming and he truly  makes the classes fun for people of all ages to enjoy,  I personally love coming to this dojang to train and anyone who is looking for a martial arts school, Akyi Martial Arts is the place to look into!
Comments By: Ashley J. Brown Belt Posted/ 7/17/2013
  • Akyi Martial Arts is the best school for any ages to train.  He makes learning new things fun and easy.  Little kids to adults can join Akyi Martial Arts.  Master Ray gives all he has to teach us the best.  If you are looking for a great place for kids or an adult to learn Martial Arts you should try Akyi Martial Arts.  You will not regret it!
Comments By: Brittney. Red Belt Posted/7/17/2013
  • Master Ray has a passion for Taekwondo and it shows in his teaching.  He continually gives his best effort from beginning to end.  He stresses proper technique and is always reminding his students how to punch, kick and block properly.  Also, he regularly teaches forms so that kids know their forms for every testing.
Comments By: Jim M /Posted: 1/21/2013
  • Awesome School! Awesome Master! Great Training!
Comments By: Amanda. Black Belt /Posted: 1/4/2013
  • Akyi Martial Arts is such an awesome place.  Master Ray is the best instructor.  He pushes us but pushes us to the limit he knows we can do.  Akyi Martial Arts made me so happy because before Akyi Martial Arts opened I was doing no sports.  Akyi Martial Arts is a great place for any ages.  Master Ray has made me realize so many things.  If you are looking for a place for you or your child to go you should try Akyi Martial Arts.  It’s a great place where one big family work together!
Comments By: Brittney J. Brown Belt Posted/7/16/2013
  • If your looking for more than just another martial arts school, this is the place.  Master Ray is not only one of the best teachers around the state but is also hands on, teaching every night….a very rare quality for someone of his rank.  Truly a rare & one of a kind school for kids as well as adults of any age.
Comments By: Jesse W. Brown Belt Posted/ 7/15/2013

Karate Glenview

Karate is a Japanese martial art that is a striking art utilizing punching, kicking, elbow strikes, and knee strikes.  Also, it incorporates open-handed techniques such as knife hands.  There are different styles of Karate where grappling, locks, restraints, throws, and vital point strikes are used.

Similar to other Asian martial arts such as Tae Kwon Do and Kung Fu, Karate developed over a long period of time.  Also, Tae Kwon Do, Kung Fu, and Karate are similar in that martial arts is more than self defense, kicking, blocking, or striking, it is a way of life.  It is an art form that can be learned as a child and passed down over generations.

In the United States, Karate became popular from martial arts movies in the 1960s, 1970s, and subsequently with movies like Karate Kid.

Parents often ask which style is better.  “Better” is a relative term.  Better fighting style, better for kids, better for adults, or better self defense are all aspects in evaluating a school.

In our opinion, parents should consider the instructor’s knowledge, teaching style, and specialties.  Cost is another very important factor.  The best way is to try a free trial class to see if you or your child likes the class.  Please contact us if you would like to try a class with no obligation or commitment.

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Winter is a great time to start an exercise program

One thing you can always count on in Chicago is a cold winter.  Gone are the bike rides and walks in the park, in are the frigid temperatures and snow.  Even in the winter, it is important to have a regular exercise program.

There are many different exercises that can be done in the home such as push ups, sit ups, pull ups, and stretching.  For some, an exercise dvd may be enough to get started.  If you find it difficult to exercise in your home or if you want to work out with a group, please consider taking a Tae Kwon Do/Kickboxing classes at our school.

We offer Tae Kwon Do classes for kids and adults.  Our goal is for everyone to get a good workout.  If just want some regular exercise, our kickboxing class that combines cardio, core exercises, strengthening, and Tae Kwon Do techniques may be a good option.

Please contact us for more information at 847-998-1111 or

winter exercise

Tae Kwon Do Perseverance

Perseverance – it is an important virtue to teach our kids but it isn’t always easy.  According to, perseverance is defined as the “steady persistence in a course of action, a purpose, a state, etc., especially in spite of difficulties, obstacles, or discouragement.”

If you would like to teach your child perseverance, we believe that our school can help.  Tae kwon do teaches perseverance by:

  • incorporating belt promotion.  Tae Kwon Do has 10 belt colors that is achieved over a period of time.  Each belt takes effort and work to attain.  Belts are earned not given.
  • challenging your child with exercises and Tae Kwon Do techniques.  Forms and techniques are not easy to master.  It takes effort to master all the components of Tae Kwon Do.
  • encouraging children to persevere even when things get difficult.

For more information about our program, please contact us.

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Lose Weight Through Tae Kwon Do

The formula is simple, eat less calories than you burn on a given day.  Put it another way, burn more calories than you eat.  While the formula may be simple, putting it into practice may be a daily struggle that often seems insurmountable.

Tae Kwon Do may help you lose weight.  One of our students lost 45 pounds in 9 months.  In addition to Tae Kwon Do, he regularly jogged and swam but he was focused on losing weight and Tae Kwon Do was one of his tools to achieve his goal.  Another student lost 20 pounds since joining our school.

Results will vary depending on your diet and other activities.  Our classes provide a structure where you can get regular exercise and learn self defense at the same time.  Keeping it fun, interesting, and learning while exercising may help you to regularly exercise and achieve your goals.

Exercise Has Many Benefits

Just in case you don’t know, there are many benefits from regular exercise.

  • Exercise helps you lose weight or maintain weight.  Burning more calories than you take in is an essential component in losing weight.  Even if your goal is not to lose weight, our metabolism slows down as we age so it is important to exercise in order to maintain your healthy weight.
  • Exercise helps your body combat disease and health conditions.  Regular exercise helps your body to be healthier helping to prevent a variety of diseases and health conditions.
  • Want to be in a better mood, exercise.  Not only will you likely look better as a result of regular exercise but exercise releases chemicals in the brain that may help you feel better.
  • Are you always tired?  Maybe you should exercise so that you can get more energy.  If you can’t walk up a flight of stairs, maybe your body is telling you something about your stamina and energy level.  Don’t rely on an energy drink to give you a boost, exercise for that natural boost in energy.
  • If you are having trouble sleeping or staying asleep, regular exercise may help you fall asleep faster and give you a deeper sleep.

Improve Focus Through Tae Kwon Do

Some may believe that Tae Kwon Do is strictly a physical activity.  While there are physical aspects such as proper punching, kicking, and blocking, there are mental aspects in Tae Kwon Do.

For example, instructors stress focus in class so that kids can learn the proper techniques.  Also, Tae Kwon Do stresses strikes that are accurate.  If you observe a class, you will see the instructor using hand targets to help kids know where to kick.  As the student advances, speed and power are emphasized.  All of these skills require focus in order to perform an accurate, powerful strike.

Another example of how Tae Kwon Do can improve a child’s focus is the teaching of Tae Kwon Do Forms or Poomses.  Forms are a series of punching, kicking, and blocking movements in a set pattern.  It takes focus to memorize the forms that progressively get more difficult with each belt level.

In today’s nanosecond world, it is difficult for a child to learn focus.  Tae Kwon Do may be one way to help your child learn to focus rather than being constantly distracted by external stimuli.

Improve Hand Eye Coordination Through Tae Kwon Do

In the North Shore, there are a ton of sports activities for your child.  One reason why you should consider Tae Kwon Do in addition to other sports activities such as baseball, basketball, or soccer is that Tae Kwon Do may improve your child’s hand eye coordination that may help your child in other sports.

How does Tae Kwon Do improve hand eye coordination?  Tae Kwon Do utilizes both hands and feet in punching, kicking, and blocking.  Tae Kwon Do helps to develop your child’s balance and flexibility.  Also, Tae kwon Do teaches the child to be aware of where and how his/her body is positioned.  This results in a greater awareness of his/her body improving hand eye coordination.

If you would like to see this in action, please consider observing one of our Tae Kwon Do classes.  You will see kids at various levels, as well as their coordination level.

Total Tae Kwon Do Cost

If you are on Groupon or Living Social, you will see a lot of offers for Tae Kwon Do.  3 months free, 50% off the first 2 months, or 19.99 for a 2 week trial are all offers I have seen in the past.  While these offers may sound enticing, you should consider the total cost to reach your black belt.

Some questions you should ask:

  • What is the monthly cost after the trial ends?
  • How much is belt testing?
  • Are kids required to test every couple of months or is it dependent on their readiness for the next belt level?
  • Are kids required to purchase sparring gear even if they are not interested in sparring?
  • What is your policy on missed classes?

In addition to the cost, another very important criteria in choosing a Tae Kwon Do program is the quality of instruction.  Is it baby sitting or are the kids really learning the techniques and tenets of Tae Kwon do?  Is the instructor cognizant of your goals for your child?  Are kids challenged to do their best and learn?

It can take a year or even 3 years to reach the black belt.  It is a long term commitment for the instructor and student.  Discounts and promotions are nice but it is also important to choose a program that matches your goals.

Improve Coordination Through Tae Kwon Do

Tae Kwon Do isn’t just about kicking, punching, and blocking.  The warm up exercises and techniques learned in class may improve your child’s coordination.  For example, one of the exercises that Master Ray employs is to have a student touch his/her foot with his/her opposite hand.  Sounds simple but may be difficult when a student is just learning the difference between his left or right hand.

An excercise like this may be difficult or confusing in the beginning but after a couple of weeks, she will master the movement.  Then Master Ray will ask him to rotate between the front and the back.  Again it is difficult in the beginning but after a couple of weeks, the student will generally master it.

An exercise like this is not done every week but other similar exercises are employed in each class.  Through these exercises, you will likely notice a difference in your child’s overall coordination.