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Background Information

Background Info



School Background

Premier Taekwondo opened in January 1997. The school was founded to promote and teach the Korean martial art of Taekwondo. Premier Taekwondo provides instruction to men, women and children

A member of the World Taekwondo Federation and the United States Taekwondo Union, the International and National governing bodies for Olympic Taekwondo competition, Premier Taekwondo is dedicated to high quality, safe and effective martial arts education.

Located on Daniel Webster Highway in Merrimack, Premier Taekwondo provides a clean, spacious, and matted workout area with training equipment, men’s and women’s changing rooms and bathroom facilities.

Instruction is provided by experienced World Taekwondo Federation registered black belt instructors. Separate classes are available for women and children. Instruction is tailored to the physical capabilities and training goals of the students.

Owner/Instructor Background

Premier Taekwondo is owned and operated by Mark M. Smith and his wife Carla F. Nastri.

Mark M. Smith began his Taekwondo education in 1981. He competed in both the 1990 and 1991 National Championships as a member the Massachusetts State Taekwondo team. In 1992, Mr. Smith completed a Instructors training course at the US Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, CO. Mr. Smith served as a coach for the New Hampshire State Junior Olympic Team in both 1995 and 1996 and Chairman of the Junior Olympic Committee in 1996 for the New Hampshire State Taekwondo Association.

Mr. Smith served as Head Instructor for Tiger Cha’s Taekwondo in Massachusetts from 1989 to 1993. Mr. Smith earned his Master level certificate, Fifth Dan (5th degree black belt), from the Kukkiwon, the World Taekwondo Headquarters, in August of 2000.

Ms. Nastri earned her Second Dan (2nd degree black belt) from the Kukkiwon, the World Taekwondo Headquarters, in April of 1999. She has been teaching since Premier Taekwondo opened in January 1997.

Master Smith and Ms. Nastri opened Premier Taekwondo to continue to provide others with the physical and mental benefits of Taekwondo that they have received.

Taekwondo Information

Taekwondo is a Korean unarmed martial art. Literally Tae (“kicking”), Kwon (“punching”), Do (“art”), means “The art of kicking and punching.” The main goal of Taekwondo is to achieve total mind and body control through proper training. Students progress from white belt through yellow, green, blue, and red to black belt.

With roots stretching back to 2000 BC., Taekwondo is the world’s most popular martial art with over 30 million practitioners and associations in 123 countries. After being a demonstration sport in the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul, Korea and the 1992 Summer Olympics in Barcelona, Spain, Taekwondo was a full medal sport in the 2000 Olympic games in Sydney, Australia.

Taekwondo provides physical fitness, weight control, self-defense, discipline, and self-confidence. Taekwondo is enjoyed by children age 5 to adults in their 70’s.


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Last modified: November 13, 2001