Meet Henri of Eksteen Martial Arts in Polokwane.
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Henri Eksteen of Eksteen Martial Arts in Polokwane.

Henri’s love affair with martial arts started 41 years ago when he was just 15 years old. Being bullied as a kid kick-started his passion for karate, which has lead him to now own his own dojo with over 100 members. 

“Coming from being bullied, something said to me that I must help others to get out of it if they’re being bullied. In 1999 I said to myself, let me leave the corporate world and let me do this. Let me just follow my passion. It’s become a way of life for me and I’ve never looked back.

Henri’s passion lies in uplifting the youth of South Africa through teaching them the discipline, etiquette and harmony of martial arts. He’s been running his dojo for 20 years and has learned a lot along the way. 

“The biggest thing I’ve learned in starting a business is to remain humble. It’s been tough I’ll be very honest with you. It’s been helluva hard work. I’ve had nobody help me and I basically started from scratch. But I am proud this is my own way. We are all masters of our own fate. If you wake up in the morning and you say, “I’m gonna have a bad day”, you’re going to have a bad day. You’ve got to wake up and be thankful for what you’ve got and make that thing work. That’s been my success, being positive. Stay humble and follow your heart.

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Contributors: Nomathemba Nkosi, Noluthando Pupuma, Vasanthie Naidoo, Faizel Emam, Thobekile Masuku, Michael Smith, Elizabeth Van Der Walt, Solomon Mananga, Willene De Villiers, Louis Petrus Nigrini, Wynand Burger, Gené Strauss, Rudolf du Preez, Ronel Germishuys, Carolyn Malan, Rudolph Dante, Pierre Versfeld, Chantal Bezuidenhuit, Marice Mercuur, Phillip Modiba, Paballo Motsifane, Ben Schempers, Jan Potgieter, Suné Van Jaarsveld, Karen Bezuidenhout, Hendrik Eksteen, Yanick Bathfield, Matthew Brownell, Gregor Rohrig, Robyn Viljoen, Gugulethu Hlekwayo, Lunika Phillip, Caitlyn Leigh and Elton Dick.

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