Master Jeff McDonald began training in Sydney, Nova Scotia in the early 1980’s. Attending classes and practicing with Master Charles Carabin and his instructors several hours each day and often up to seven days per week, he rapidly learned the fundamentals of the Ji Do Kwan system of Taekwondo.
As a coloured belt, Master McDonald appeared regularly on the weekly Carabin’s Taekwondo television program, and frequently assisted Master Carabin with promotional demonstrations. In 1987, Master McDonald was a member of the Jeux Canada Winter Games Taekwondo Demonstration Team.
Master McDonald has competed in many tournaments throughout Canada, including four appearances at the Canadian National Taekwondo Team Trials. He has won dozens of awards including the bronze medal at the 1991 Atlantic Coast Games, and multiple gold medals at the International Battle of Champions, as well as many other awards in the sparring, forms and board breaking divisions at numerous tournaments throughout the Maritimes.
1988 was a monumental year for Master McDonald, as he was promoted to Black Belt by Grandmaster Chong Soo Lee, he opened his first school in Port Hawkesbury, Nova Scotia, and he was elected to the Board of Directors for the Nova Scotia WTF Taekwondo Association. After instructing in Port Hawkesbury for four years, he was invited by Master Carabin to work alongside him as a full-time instructor at the Carabin’s Taekwondo main location in Halifax.
Halifax held many exciting things in store for Master McDonald. Experience competing, coaching and hosting many more competitions, promotions to 3rd and 4th-degree black belt, and it allowed him to conduct a multitude of demonstrations, self-defense workshops and technical seminars. Master McDonald has done Demonstrations for ATV’s “Breakfast Television”, the Halifax International Busker’s Festival, AUAA Basketball Championships, as well as for many other groups and individuals across the Atlantic provinces. He was also on the organizing committee and demonstration team for the 1995 Canadian National Taekwondo Team Trials in Halifax.
Many talented individuals have trained with Master McDonald over the years, including several Canadian National medallists, various members of the RCMP and Halifax Regional Police Forces, and other students from all areas of society. Master McDonald has taken courses and seminars from many world-renowned individuals including Grandmaster Chong Soo Lee, Grandmaster Ken Cheung, Grandmaster Simon Cheung, Grandmaster Oh Jang Yoon, and former World Kickboxing Champion Jean Yves Therriault.
Master McDonald continued to instruct in Halifax until early 1999 when he decided to return to school and relocated to Calgary, Alberta to further his education. A year after moving to Calgary, Master McDonald was promoted to 5th-degree black belt by Grandmaster Chong Soo Lee. Since moving to Alberta, Master McDonald has operated Taekwondo Clubs at his school, at the WestJet Campus and he has both refereed in and participated in several tournaments. Recently, he combined his passion for photography with his martial arts experience and is offering the Images of a Warrior program in Calgary where he creates dynamic action portraits of Martial Artists. http://www.mcdonaldphoto.ca/imagesofawarrior
Thousands of students later, Master McDonald continues to learn new techniques, and further his knowledge in preparation for his 6th-degree black belt exam.
Though not currently operating a full-time martial arts studio, Master McDonald occasionally trains with Master Lau & Master Kim at the Calgary Taekwondo Academy and he has recently started offering a monthly Self Defense Workshop that he is hosting on a drop-in basis for people wanting to learn these skills in the Calgary area. www.facebook.com/CalgarySelfDefense