The World Tang Soo Do Association

A True "World" Organization


Grandmaster Jae Chul Shin
(December 20, 1936 - July 9, 2012)

Robert E. Beaudoin


Studio of the Month

February   2014

Paresh Martial Arts

Chief Instructor:

Ms. Kristina Ohlson, Sam Dan

Other Instructors:

Mr. Don Ellis Aguillo, Sam Dan


447 Irving St,
San Francisco, CA 94122



Number of Students:


Types of Classes:

Traditional Tang Soo Do for Tiny Tigers (3-4), Little Dragons (5-6), Juniors (7-12), Teens & Adults (13+). Family Classes (parent & child) for Tiger Cubs (2.5-3.5), Tiny Tigers, Little Dragons, Juniors. Leadership, Weapons, Sparring, Safety & Self Awareness, Yoga


History of the School:

Paresh Martial Arts has evolved over the last 7 years. Ms. Ohlson offered her first class under the name of Kids First! Martial Arts in January of 2007, out of an art and yoga studio for toddlers. Only 6 months later, she opened her own location offering classes for kids through adults. This new studio was called Kick Start Tang Soo Do. In 2009, a not-for-profit in Texas, with Chuck Norris on its board, requested Ms. Ohlson stop using Kick Start because the phrase was used in part of their After School Program language. That is when Paresh became the studios name.
Paresh is hindi for “superior spirit” or as it was told to Ms. Ohlson by her meditation teacher, “the power from beyond”. It was the name the teacher gave her many years ago, before she starting training in Tang Soo Do. If you think about the meaning of either definition, “Paresh” is a hindi word for Indomitable Spirit! All cultures are rich with their values, and Ms. Ohlson smiles when she says, “I’m a small Swedish woman, teaching an ancient Korean martial art, in a male dominated industry, with a Hindi name- how’s that for a Melting Pot?”
It’s been 5 years since the name change to Paresh, which is really when the studio began to grow. In 2009 the studio added more classes and introduced its Family Classes for toddlers. Those little toddlers and parents who were part of the pilot series 5 years ago are now strong gup students! That’s been a truly exciting experience, growing, learning and training together.
In 2010, Paresh welcomed Mr. Don Ellis Aguillo to San Francisco. A student of Master Scott Merrill’s from A Mountain Wind Martial Arts in State College, PA, he was a huge addition to the Paresh community. Not only is he a skilled and disciplined Tang Soo Do practitioner, he is a dedicated and passionate instructor-which was something Paresh needed immensely: another instructor! With the studio growing and Paresh preparing to send its first student to test for Cho Dan, Ms. Ohlson was incredibly thankful to have Mr. A (his nick name) join Paresh. With his partnership and leadership, Paresh added more classes and programs, including Advanced Training, Weapons, Sparring & Leadership.

In 2013, it was another exciting year with both Mr. A and Ms. Ohlson testing successfully for Sam Dan and adding more community events to the calendar. We held our annual Party in the Park to celebrate Paresh’s 6th birthday, hit up AT&T park to cheer on the SF Giants, threw the 6th Halloween Party, complete with outrageous costumes and welcomed December with the much anticipated Paresh student trading card Release Party!
We closed 2013 with over 200 students and entered 2014 as the host for our Regional Championship in May. The studio had a great holiday break, complete with new cubbies, 5 new wave masters and a full wall of mirrors! We are truly alive and kicking out here on the west coast. If you’re ever in San Francisco, please stop in, say hi and work out with us!

History of the Chief Instructor:

Ms. Ohlson took her first martial arts (Judo) class at the age of 5, through her families local recreation department. She trained for 2 years before her teacher moved out of state and she was left “missing martial arts everyday” according to her mom who said that when she put her daughter to bed, she would ask, “Mommy, when am I going to do martial arts again?”
It was 2 more years of asking before the Montpelier Karate Club(MKC) offered a recreation class, and that little Ms. Ohlson was back in uniform! Sasen Budo was the style, a hard combat style from Okinawa. Sensei Mike was all a Sensei is supposed to be: strong, disciplined, intense, with a mysterious twinkle in his eye! She trained with the MKC from 1985-1989, she earned her orange and green belt during this time.
Between 1989 and 2001 Ms. Ohlson tried Seido karate as well as stopping by her instructors at MKC when she was home. But it wasn’t until February of 2001 that she was introduced to Tang Soo Do and her WTSDA journey began. She was in a Yoga class and in the room below them there was a Tang Soo Do class happening. The students were ki happing so loud she heard them! That’s when she realized she was in the wrong room!
She joined the WTSDA in 2001. At that time there were 3 TSD studios in the North Lake Tahoe and Reno area and there were weeks when she would attend 5 classes between the 3 studios! She missed martial arts so much, just like when she was a little girl, she couldn’t wait to get back into it, and get back into it she did!
Ms. Ohlson tested for Cho Dan in 2004, opened Paresh in 2007, tested for E Dan in 2008, tested for Sam Dan in 2013 and is set to host the Region One Championships in May of this year, 2014. It’s been an amazing 13 years, so many wonderful memories, exciting adventures as well as some challenging times. The Indomitable Spirit of the WTSDA, Region One, and Paresh Members have made the journey amazing. It is a true family and one Ms. Ohlson is honored to be a part of and to growing, one day at a time.

What makes your studio stand out from the rest:

Community. We’re a big family. We look after one an other, we ‘team it out’, as Mr. Stevenson says “Teamwork makes the dream work!” Paresh is a living entity, it is an always changing, in reflection of its members, who bring their life to the dojang to share, learn, celebrate and at times mourn. We are becoming better people by growing together, helping each other and this is possible by being valued and empowered.

Event: Halloween Phal Put Ki

Halloween: Super Ninjas with Wonder Woman

Student Testimonials:

"I enjoy helping set up the obstacle course and punching out the targets because it takes team work. Team work makes me a better person. Tang Soo Do means loving each other and giving."

~Ryan Crosby: Tiny Tigers, 4 years old, White Belt with Brown Stripe

“Paresh Martial Arts teaches me to be a better person at the dojang, and elsewhere. It teaches me to be more confident and prepared for anything. I love PMA because girls are as strong as boys, and treated equal. I love Paresh because of Ms.Ohlson. She is the best. She makes us laugh, and always pushes us to do our best. PMA has made a huge difference to my life, changing me from a small caterpillar, to strong butterfly.”

~Stella Malone: Junior Gup Program, 10 years old, 3rd Gup, Brown Belt

“I have been going to Paresh for more than half my life. Before I started, in 2007, I was a small boy who wasn’t exactly feeling brave or secure when doing things. But, as I walked through those doors, I felt connected. Everyone was friendly to me, I learned a lot. And I enjoy helping younger kids because I feel that I can relate to them, you can say that I’m still a child at heart. And as I took more lessons, learning how to be fit and safe, I no longer felt in danger or hesitant. I also made some friends along the way; because I know that no matter what rank they are, they are still part of the Paresh family, and the World Tang Soo Do family. That is also one of the reasons going to tournaments and clinics are so fun. Another great thing about Paresh is that no matter how long you were there, you are still welcomed. At first, it was only Ms.Ohlson, and then Mr. A came along. Even though Mr. A didn’t know anything about who we were, we, the Paresh family, gladly accepted him. Now he’s one of our favorite friends! So to summarize it all, Paresh is a very fun, safe, and teaching family that supports each other.”

~Yevgeniy Barkolov: Junior Gup Program, 12 years old, 2nd Gup Red Belt

“I really enjoy the challenge TSD presents, and how it feels to be promoted to a higher rank. The amazing stuff Ms. Ohlson can think of is pure genius, like the wrist bands: instead of saying can I be finished with dinner, I say can I please be excused (to practice more TSD).”

~Spencer Li, Junior Gup Program, age 9, 8th gup Orange Belt

“I enjoy earning stripes and learning new things every day. TSD means to have a peaceful life and to try not to get angry over little things.” ~Sienna Li, age 6, Dragon program, Yellow with Blue stripe

“Ms. Ohlson is an inspiring teacher and an exceptional role model. She creates a safe community infused with respect, honor, trust, and diligence where children and adults grow and flourish. To me, TSD represents a journey where each day's small steps take me further than I could have imagined.”

~Anita Sil, age 46, Tang Soo Do parent and Tae Kwon Do black belt, 2nd Dan