Written by Sensei Jon Ellis
Ayla Calnan is 7 years old. She has been training with Sensei Jon Ellis at Ballina Dojo for 9 months now and has grown from strength to strength. Ayla is a committed karateka with Shodan always on her mind during her training. Ayla trains hard in the dojo and her efforts have encouraged her mother Rikki-Lee and father Michael to join the dojo as well.
Ayla was diagnosed with Autism at 3 and recently diagnosed with OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder) and Tourette’s. She consistently works hard at everyday life as well as at her study of Karate. Ayla never complains or makes excuses for how hard training is regardless of the day she has had and is truly an inspiration for everyone who meets her.
Ayla has also decided to start Kobudo. Her first lesson last was two weeks ago at the Lismore Dojo with Sensei Jon Ellis and Sensei Mark McFadden in which she showed true spirit to conquer her afflictions.
“I am very proud to have Ayla as part of my dojo and do believe everyone could take a leaf out of her book. She never misses a class and never gives up! Well done Ayla OSU!”