History of Hall's

33 years strong

3 3
est. 1984

Hall’s Taekwondo is a Melbourne institution. We’ve been an integral part of the development of taekwondo in Australia for 33 years, and we offer classes and programs for all ages that deliver Fitness with Meaning for a healthy mind and body.



  • 1965

    Our history kicks off in 1965 when Ivan Barry and Peter O’Mahoney establish the Brunswick Karate Club. Ivan and Peter link with Tino Cebrano and Jack Rozinsky to strengthen martial arts in Victoria.

  • 1973

    In a pioneering move, Jack decides to change martial arts styles and hires Head Instructor Ke-Hyung No to introduce taekwondo to Australia. Martin Hall is one of the first students at the new Brunswick Taekwondo Club.

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  • 1974

    Jeanette has been dating Martin for a couple of years now and, inspired by his passion and progress, starts training as well. This was unusual, as women traditionally weren’t involved in the sport at this time.

  • 1975

    Aged just 18, Martin competes at the third World Taekwondo Championships in South Korea, bringing home a bronze medal – his first of many medals over the years.

    Programs to suit everyone
  • The fledgling club gains popularity, but it’s a tough environment. There’s a ‘No pain, no gain’ mentality and championships are open – you just fight who you meet in the draw, with no age, weight or belt divisions.

  • 1976

    Martin continues to compete in Asian and World Championships through the late ‘70s and ‘80s, beginning a decade of success as undefeated Australian Featherweight Champion.



  • 1979

    Martin Hall takes over the Brunswick Taekwondo Club. Founders Ivan Barry and Peter O’Mahoney recognise his energy and vision, and are convinced that he will succeed.

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  • 1980

    Martin and Jeanette marry. They continue to train hard and teach at night from the club ‘rooms’, a small church hall on Melville Road, West Brunswick. During the day, Jeanette works as a journalist and Martin as a marine electrician.

  • 1983

    Martin and Jeanette decide to turn their passion into a business, and buy an old public pool in Brunswick. Renovations take nearly 12 months as they build a traditional sprung wooden training floor right over the pool. To this day the pool (with lane markings) is still under the floor.

  • 1984

    Extensive renovations continue in Brunswick. Existing club members are a fantastic resource, committing wholeheartedly to Australia’s first full-time taekwondo-only fitness centre. Hall’s Taekwondo Brunswick opens in August 1984.

    Brunswick facility
  • Ivan Barry, from the original 1965 karate club, walks into the centre one day (not long after Martin’s father had suddenly and sadly passed away) and says he’s there to work in whatever capacity we could use. Ivan becomes a much loved figure around the club.

  • Meanwhile, Martin and Jeanette’s first child Tiffiny is born, capping off an extraordinary year for the whole extended ‘family’ at Hall’s.

  • 1986

    Martin decides to stop competing and focus on national and international coaching positions. Now super busy with Australia’s first full-time taekwondo centre, Martin and Jeanette also welcome their second child Bridget into the family.


& Growth

  • 1987

    Throughout the ‘80s and into the ‘90s, taekwondo grows worldwide, with new developments in protective equipment, and petitions from students and teachers that finally lead to women competing in world championships from 1987.

  • 1988

    Martin is now grooming athletes, coaching extensively and travelling widely while, back at home, Jeanette handles much of the teaching and management load in Melbourne.

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  • Hall’s is growing steadily and putting lots of effort into developing Hall’s Taekwondo Systems, documenting our approach, classes and programs. Our popularity makes us realise we need strong management and great systems to further advance our school.

  • 1989

    We start to experiment with some bold marketing, introducing branded cars, advertising trailers and taekwondo demo teams. Our aim is to promote taekwondo as a real fitness choice that enhances people’s lives. Our approach is revolutionary for the times.

  • 1991

    Hall’s begins a popular tradition of taking part in Melbourne’s annual Moomba Parade through the city streets – eventually we even build our own floats. The parades were a great social event for students, and a fun way to raise awareness about the sport of taekwondo.

  • 1993

    As another way to encourage our members to live healthy, we develop an annual ALL FIT camp in Bacchus March. These functional fitness camps were ahead of their day, with canoeing, aerial rope and cardio obstacle courses, and team-building challenges like log carrying.

  • 1995

    Ivan Barry sadly passed away on the 25th of May 1995. Ivan was a loved presence around the club, and a father figure to Martin and many members. Many of us still remember him as the kind-hearted, grumpy old guy around the place who never said a bad word about anyone.

  • 1996

    Hall’s Taekwondo begins a tradition of awarding the Ivan Barry Scholarship to our most outstanding students. Past scholarship winners include:
    1995: Oliver Roberts 
    1996: Luke Atkins
    2000: Belinda Sanders
    2001: Ryan Carneli
    2003: Peter Whitefield
    2007: Melissa Tarquinio
    2016: Kiara Evens

  • 1998

    Our second club, Hall’s Taekwondo Heidelberg, opens in the same year that Martin and Jeanette’s third child Lleyton is born. Lleyton is a new brother to Tiffiny (now 14) and Bridget (12).

    Heidelberg facility
  • 1999

    Heidelberg proves to be a great model for how to run a full-time fitness centre. As Hall’s becomes a fitness icon around northern Melbourne, we expand again with our first franchise centre in Essendon under Head Instructor Dan and daughter Samantha Vere-Flint.

  • In another move that we think is ahead of the times, Halls’ Taekwondo trademarks our belief in Fitness with Meaning. Our philosophy is that true health and fitness are underpinned by respect, continuous learning and a healthy mindset.



  • 2000

    With perfect timing, taekwondo is admitted for the first time as a full sport at the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games. Along with the team, Martin Hall is selected as one of Australia’s first Olympic taekwondo coaches.

  • Four of the eight Australian Taekwondo Olympic Team are Hall’s students – Warren Hansen, Lisa O’Keefe, 
    Paul Lyons and Lauren Burns.

  • Lauren Burns wins the first ever Taekwondo Olympic Gold Medal while another team member, Daniel Trenton – who earned his black belt and developed his passion for sparring at Hall’s – wins an Olympic Silver Medal.

    2000 Olympic highlights
  • In recognition of his services to the sport, Martin is awarded an Australian Sports Medal by Prime Minister John Howard.

  • 2003

    Martin is awarded his 7th Dan Black Belt by Mr Young Youl Oh, Deputy Secretary General of the World Taekwondo Federation. This makes Martin one of very few Australians with such an advanced black belt.

  • 2004

    Our club continues to grow as we open a big, new centre in Tullamarine, with multiple training floors and world-class facilities, instructors and programs.

    Tullamarine facility
  • Martin’s student Carlo Massimino becomes a dual Olympian when he qualifies for the 2004 Athens Olympic Games. Martin travels to Greece with the Australian Olympic Team as Carlo’s personal coach.


with Meaning

  • 2005

    Prince Charles is in Melbourne inspecting venues for the 2006 Commonwealth Games, and Hall’s Taekwondo Demo Team Xtreme is asked to put on a showcase performance for him at the State Netball and Hockey Centre.

  • 2008

    Students continue to train at Hall’s from all over Melbourne. Together with Leanne Whiteroad we open Hall’s Taekwondo Sunshine. Leanne is one of our Black Belt Leadership graduates, and has more than 20 years of tertiary teaching expertise.

    Sunshine facility
  • Ryan Carneli, who started training in 1993 at Hall’s Taekwondo Brunswick, continues a proud tradition by representing Australia at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games.

  • In the entertainment sphere, Demo Team Xtreme, led by Luke Atkins, reaches the final of Australia’s Got Talent, making it one of the top eight acts from 3000 auditions Australia-wide.

    Team demonstrations
  • Meanwhile, our daughter Tiffiny also becomes a favourite on national TV as ‘Angel’ in the game show Gladiator, displaying her expertise in aerial games and martial arts.

  • 2009

    A milestone year, as we celebrate Martin’s 40th year of training and Hall’s 25th anniversary operating full-time taekwondo centres.

  • Also in 2009, we launch the innovative TKD 360° Syllabus, further formalising our teaching beliefs and creating an extraordinary pathway for students. If you’ve seen the 360° Syllabus, we think there’s nothing quite like it in the world.

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  • 2011

    We begin to share ownership of Hall’s Taekwondo Heidelberg with Jerry Moraitis. Jerry becomes Head Instructor and takes a strong interest in coaching our young athletes.

  • 2012

    Hall’s continues to grow and evolve to meet the needs of students across the city. We open Hall’s Taekwondo Melbourne, a perfect location for central city athletes.

  • Martin Hall demonstrates the value of continuous improvement by earning his 8th Dan Grandmaster in Kukkiwon, South Korea, the World Taekwondo Headquarters. Martin’s instructor Mr Young Youl Oh travels to Korea to proudly witness his student grade.



  • 2013

    Our unmatched focus on education and training continues as we publish the comprehensive Hall’s Taekwondo Beyond Black Belt Syllabus, mapping the journey to mastery for our dedicated students.

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  • Committed to learning from the best to be our best, in 2013 we employ five new Korean instructors to teach across all our centres. These highly skilled overseas recruits strengthen our already impressive instructor base.

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  • 2014

    Our daughter and wonderful creative designer Bridget joins Head Office in Tullamarine and immediately starts refreshing our corporate brand to mark our 30th anniversary.

  • An amazing feature of our brand refresh is the inspiring chronological history now prominent in each centre. Stunning floor to ceiling photographic displays showcase students, instructors, events and competitions from our very beginning.

  • 2015

    Our central city club relocates from Southbank to a more family-friendly home in Port Melbourne. Members love the new location, and the centre boasts new and innovative facilities.

    Port Melbourne facility
  • Our popular Little Ninja’s Syllabus relaunches with bright, fun and more engaging materials and programs. We also introduce the equally fun and colourful Joeys Syllabus, for our youngest (and sometimes most excited) little martial artists.

    Little Taeks
  • Also in 2015, Hall’s Taekwondo sponsors the Arnold Classic Martial Arts Festival (as in Arnold Schwarzenegger), welcoming taekwondo students from all over the world regardless of affiliation to this inspiring goodwill event.

  • 2016

    Never content to rest on our success, 2016 sees us renovate all facilities across Melbourne. To cater for fitness with meaning of all types, we introduce innovative high intensity interval training (HIIT) cages and equipment.

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  • So that members can make the most of our upgraded facilities, Hall’s develops a cost-efficient Platinum membership, giving students the option to train as much (and as hard) as they want.

  • 2017

    We continue to live our belief in never-ending improvement by launching a fantastic new website (you’re reading it now!) to better serve our members and take us proudly into the future.

  • Always looking for ways to enhance our members’ experience, we introduce a range of personally designed, Hall’s branded training equipment and protective gear, available at all centres and online.

  • So where does our path lead? In 2017, Mr Park from World Taekwondo Headquarters rates us as the ‘top ranked’ dojang worldwide, commending Hall’s for standing out among 10,000 dojangs around the globe.
    Welcome to Hall’s Taekwondo.