The World Tang Soo Do Association

A True "World" Organization


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

Robert E. Beaudoin

Untitled Document

May 2015 Masters Profile


Name: Larry Reed Wick

Rank and date of rank: Yuk Dan (July, 2012)

Region and Studio Name & Location: Region #19,
Fairbanks Academy of Tang Soo Do, Fairbanks AK

Contact Information:


Personal Information

Where were you born?

I was born in Two Harbors, MN.

Description of profession or trade outside of Tang Soo Do:

I am a full time martial artist.

Glass sandwich demonstration by Master Wick - broken glass, Master Wick, broken glass, cinder blocks and sledge hammers.

Martial Arts Career

When, where and why you started Tang Soo Do?

I began my martial arts training in 1967 and earned my black belt in1973, in Silver Bay, MN, under the guidance of Master Bob Willis. It was awarded by Grandmaster Hwang Kee. To the best of my recollection, the studio name was Silver Bay Tang Soo Do. When I began training, martial arts study was just beginning to become popular in the United States and I was excited to try it.  As a youth I was somewhat small in stature and I wanted the physical skills and edge Tang Soo Do could offer.  When I first met Grandmaster Shin, I was so excited that forgot to change from gym shoes to dress shoes.  As I stood there in my suit and bright white tennis shoes, his first words to me were “Nice shoes, Larry”.

What were your first impressions when you started and how have they changed?

From the moment I began my training I thought “Wow! This is amazing!” and it is still how I feel today.

Any other martial arts studied?

I have also studied Tae Kwon Do and Tai Chi in the past.

Notable accomplishments or future goals in the martial arts field?

As a member of the World Tang Soo Do Association, I have been fortunate to have received Instructor of the Year, Master of the Year, and have had the honor of receiving the Master’s Clinic Spirit Award four times.  My Tang Soo Do training culminated in the creation of the Split Second Survival (SSS) concepts of self-defense that I currently teach.  I have travelled across the country teaching SSS clinics, accepted challenges from all styles at the Las Vegas Martial Arts Super Show, and was featured in the February 2009 issue of Black Belt magazine.

Split Second Survival article from 2009 Black Belt magazine. Master Wick and his Split Second Survival against several guns.

Tang Soo Do Career

What was your Master’s thesis on, why did you choose it, and what did you learn from it?

The subject of my most recent thesis was a program I developed called RESPECT (restraint elimination system of practical effective control techniques).  I developed this program as an alternative to the way violence is handled by personnel in youth facilities and institutions.  During the research and development process I learned many options and techniques for diffusing violence and increasing the safety for personnel and those under their control. These techniques apply to Tang Soo Do in that they offer alternatives to traditional restraints and can help practitioners avoid injuries.

What is your favorite part of Tang Soo Do?

Although I value every aspect of Tang Soo Do, weapons training is my favorite part because weapons are an extension of the body and expand creativity of motion.

WTSDA committees or positions:

I have been Regional Director for Region 15 and Region 19, and have also been a member of the Board of Directors.

Difference between when you first started training and today? 

Training in the martial arts today is much more health, safety, and family-oriented than when I first began.  Martial arts studios are also more professional and prevalent in society today.

Master Wick and his students (left) and Master Wick's sai demonstration at the 2004 World Championship (right).

What is your favorite Hyung and/or weapon and why?

Sais are my weapon of choice because they are very challenging to master and fun to use.  I learned that I would not be a good film star when I was performing a sai demonstration and threw both of them on the floor when I came face to face with the camera.

Who are some of your role models in and out of WTSDA?

There are way too many to mention!  All of the senior masters and so many students, regardless of rank, have inspired me in countless ways.  I have also been inspired by non-Tang Soo Do individuals who are battling health issues similar to mine.

What are some of your favorite memories of your time in WTSDA?

My favorite memories of Tang Soo Do revolve around gathering and training with members worldwide. Attending clinics in various states, hosting visiting masters and members in Alaska, the World Championships, and traveling internationally for Tang Soo Do purposes are all high on my list of favorite memories.  On one occasion when I was in Europe, Grandmaster Shin asked me to teach a clinic for a small group of students.  When I arrived at the location, there were more like a hundred students.  Being the ninja that I am, I walked right up to the table of a different Tang Soo Do association’s test and introduced myself to the panel before realizing I was at the wrong place at the wrong time! I must have made an impression on them because after that they kept trying to peek in the door across the way to watch my clinic instead of their own test.

What are your future goals in WTSDA?

My future goal in the WTSDA is to continue to be a positive influence in the association and create more friendships and memories.

As WTSDA celebrates its 30th anniversary, what are your hopes/wishes for WTSDA in the next 30 years?

My wishes for the WTSDA in the next 30 years are for it to continue to strengthen as it grows and to continue to be unified as a worldwide organization.  I hope that the completion and expansion of the headquarters will facilitate increased exchange of knowledge and the influence of Tang Soo Do worldwide.

Master Wick with his students (left) and at the WTSDA headquarters (right).

Advice/Words of Wisdom

Youth, teen and/or adult martial artist:

Always keep challenging yourself and strive to be the best that you can be in whatever you do.

Teaching tips or ways you make classes more exciting:

Students never know what to expect from class when I teach because I keep it changing all of the time.  As an instructor, try to be fresh and exciting yourself and it will inspire the students to do the same.

Tang Soo!