Sabrina geared up for Body Pump class.

Our Philosophy

Dojang is the Korean equivalent of Dojo – a place where people train in the martial arts. Beyond the Dojang therefore captures the philosophy that a martial artist’s training does not begin and end each time the practitioner attends the dojang. For the development of the person, training always continues with lessons to be learnt from anywhere at any time. And so by training in this way, we each can strive to live a healthier and fitter life, build more friendships, and experience more of what life has to offer.

Our philosophy embraces a holistic approach.

Whilst physical training is important, we also value body conditioning, wellbeing, and mental growth. Each is important to enable us to live in the present and really capture the Eastern intention of martial arts training.

Our ambition is therefore to support people to embrace a holistic fitness lifestyle through the guidance of martial arts principles, so that we all can make the most of life’s opportunities.

The foundations

Back in 2018, Beyond the Dojang was initially launched as a personal blog by Sabrina Mistry, a UK martial artist in the Korean Art of Soo Bahk Do Moo Duk Kwan.

A curious mind by nature, Sabrina had always enjoyed exploring the details behind the techniques and traditions that were reflected in the dojang. Often after class, she would ask her instructor some questions or review a technique.

She had initially started martial arts as a way to demonstrate to herself her own physical advancement. This was important to her. Sabrina was already a few years into the fitness journey to transform her life for the better – starting from a position of an 18 year old who had never really exercised before and was very unfit and overweight. Ultimately, she wanted to see what she was truly capable of doing.

By 2020, Sabrina had lost four stone in weight, built muscle mass, increased her flexibility, improved her nutrition, and was a 2nd Dan martial artist.

Before (L) and After (R)

She came to realise that although she had initially looked for physical change, her mindset had also developed. Health and fitness had merged with martial arts to become a lifestyle.

It was a lifestyle that gave Sabrina more discipline and focus on a variety of things from nutrition to achieving work goals. More importantly, it was a lifestyle led her to embrace more of a ‘what if’ mentality. This enabled her to do and experience so much more than ever before – such as rowing a boat for the first time despite not being able to swim!

Sabrina in the moment of boat rowing. It’s not at all like the rowing machine at the gym! Taken in July 2020.

And that’s where Beyond the Dojang comes in.

As a 2nd Dan in 2018, it was this transformation in herself that led Sabrina to a desire to travel, connect, and learn more from others. What she learnt, together with her thoughts and own fitness journey experiences, were captured in the early days of Beyond the Dojang.

Over time, she connected with more like-minded people. They were both martial artists and fitness enthusiasts that sought to embrace a holistic health and fitness lifestyle and placed high importance on personal development. And so now, Beyond the Dojang is evolving from a personal blog into a community of contributors – who we refer to as BTD Ninjas. Each Ninja occasionally assists with creating content at Beyond the Dojang, sharing their knowledge, insights, and learning.

Here you’ll find content to assist you on the health and fitness journey, whether you are a martial artist or not.  However, the values of martial arts underpin the philosophy behind Beyond the Dojang.  These are transferrable to other interests and contexts in life.  We hope that you’ll find the content here valuable.

To the journey!

Sabrina’s story has been featured here:

Sabrina’s weight loss journey

How I went from unfit to become a black belt

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