I joined San Mateo Kuk Sool Won in September of 2002 with the goal of doing something positive for myself during a low period in my career as I had just been laid off from my job of 18 years.  What I found was a positive atmosphere that improved my overall attitude and helped keep me physically fit.  Now, seven years later and working towards my second degree black belt, I have found myself in a family-like environment where the continuing objective of the instructors and students is to not only enjoy what you are learning but to believe in yourself and what you can accomplish no matter what your strengths and weaknesses are.
Master Tim Sheehan exemplifies his high energy for this martial art through his enthusiasm and teachings.  He ensures that his classes are fun yet serious.  Tim works with each student at their level in order to ensure that they maintain the same level of excitement and drive that he has.  Outside of the normal classroom experience, Tim challenges his students to succeed through testing, tournaments, demonstrations, and special weapons classes.  It is Tim’s passion towards Kuk Sool Won that has given me the eagerness to keep striving to the next level.

Thomas Raffetto, High Tech Professional

My two boys (now 5 and 7) have been coming to San Mateo
Kuk Sool Won for two years. They love it. At their age they switch in and out of activities, but they have never wavered in their commitment to Kuk Sool. My husband and I supported their desire to learn martial arts as we thought it would be a wonderful way for them to learn discipline, respect and calmness. We researched all the local schools and chose San Mateo Kuk Sool Won because it has a "real" and personal feel to it. The boys are now white and yellow belts. I remember in the early days that they could be a little silly. It is
great to see them now; they take their lessons seriously and they are
proud of their progress. I think that your program is hitting our goals
and, as I said, the boys really love it. Thanks again, I hope we'll be
coming for years to come.

Bron and Mike Syiek

My original plan was to find a martial arts school for my teen daughter, to help build up her strength and confidence. We were signing up my daughter when Tim asked me if I was interested. I told him that I felt that I was too old, and he told me about the other students in the beginners class who were my age or older. I decided to give it a try. That was March of 2008. Today, I am 25 lbs. lighter, much stronger, and am getting ready to test for my Red belt. In another year, I may be testing for my Black belt. I never thought I would last this long, but the classes are challenging yet a lot of fun, and the people are helpful and friendly. My daughter has more confidence, discipline, and self-respect. I'm glad she found the school, and I'm glad we became a part of it.

Marlo Gomez

San Mateo Kuk Sool Won is a great place for learning martial arts and getting fit. Learning Kuk Sool Won has many benefits, including improved coordination, flexibility, balance, and strength, just to name a few. Master Tim Sheehan is an excellent teacher. He is supportive and patient, as well as very safety-conscious. He provides positive encouragement for students to learn and improve, but does not take risks. He adjusts his teaching style for adults, teens, and young children, so he is great with all ages and abilities. The junior instructors are also excellent, offering support and encouragement in the same style as Master Sheehan. There are also fun and interesting extracurricular activities such as the annual tournament and a “super seminar” led by Kuk Sool Won’s Grandmaster and other senior masters. The annual Halloween party is a blast, too. Before choosing San Mateo Kuk Sool Won, I searched around and compared different schools and arts, and I have been very pleased with my choice. I am much more fit and energetic than before. I look forward to each class and continuing in Kuk Sool Won.

Michael K. Helms, PhD, MBA, age 43
Black-brown belt in Kuk Sool Won

Bryan, our son, has been a student at Kuk Sool Won for 6 years. He is
now 13. In the beginning, he had difficulty focusing and taking class
seriously. As the years went on, he became better and more focused. He
is challenged continuously and this is so good for him. He earned his
black belt, and just before the black belt ceremony with the Grand
Master, last year at the tournament, he won two gold medals and one
bronze. We were proud of him, but more importantly, he was so proud of
himself for achieving that honor.

Kuk Sool has boosted his self confidence and helps out with normal
stresses of teenage life.

Bryan is now in middle school and although he has activities that
sometimes take him away from class, he can't wait to get back to it.
He feels that it is something he has mastered, to a degree, and this
gives him confidence in other areas of his life. Tim has been a
constant support for Bryan and we are thankful for his humor, superb
instruction and understanding.
Bryan has so much fun with Tim, and
enjoys his private lessons. Earlier in his lessons, when he was
younger, I would sit through most lessons, and I was surprised and
happy about the positive messages relayed to the students.


Seven years ago our son began studying Kuk Sool Won with Tim and stuck with it to finally achieve his goal of becoming a black belt.  In addition to learning martial arts skills, we watched as he built self-confidence, discipline, honor and respect.  After earning his black belt we were pleasantly surprised too be informed by our son that “this is just the beginning” of his journey.  We cannot wait to see where it takes him.

                                                                                    Jeff & Jo-Anne Dao

My son has been enrolled at Kuk Sool Won for two years and
it has been a great experience for him. The school has a terrific
balance of firm, but fun instruction. My son is always happy to go to
class and enjoys moving up through the ranks. The focus required to
memorize the forms and other moves has been useful in karate, in
school, and in daily life
. I wouldn't hesitate to refer other
children to the program. I fully expect him to achieve the rank of
black belt and he is looking forward to it!


Some time ago, I was having a variety of health issues: insomnia, anxiety and depression. I chose not to take medications because of the negative side effects. Several doctors told me that strenuous exercise could possibly help certain symptoms. So I tried Kuk Sool hoping that it may help me with my health problems. That was 14 years ago. Now, I am sleeping better,  and both my anxiety and depression has subsided. More importantly, with my newly found confidence, I don't worry as much anymore.
Master Tim Sheehan is an exceptional teacher in Kuk Sool Won in San Mateo. He has devoted his whole life in Martial Arts. Besides learning a lot of self defense skills from him, I feel very balanced, youthful and energetic even at 65.

Max Woo

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