about me 2

I was taken to Judo classes aged 5, stayed for a time until moving to another area at about 9.

Already having an interest in Martial Arts and a relatively shy boy I read many books on philosophy, psychology and karate or alike, looked and attended classes secretly.I went to Western boxing for some time until I became interested in Eastern Philosophy mainly because of the KungFu series on TV in the early seventies. This fascinated me as the focus seemed to be attempts to understand and resolve conflict rather than just fighting.

I found a Karate school – Shotokan based – practiced there for a time until finding and enjoying Aiki-Jitsu, after a time I attended a KungFu school close to where I lived, found it to be more challenging with forms and applications. I attended classes in both 6 days a week, practiced daily, entering Tournaments until I  stopped Aiki-Jitsu focusing only on Chinese Martial Art.

I started teaching by default. The Instructor of a class I attended left suddenly and as highest grade, took the class until a replacement came. None came, and then more new students came, my Instructor then asked if I’d like to take another class over, which i did. I saw this augmented and consolidated my knowledge and abilities – Learning – Practicing – sharing.

I found Tai Chi in 1983 whilst attending seminars with Master Yau, a senior student was practicing which awoke an interest- how can this slow movement help?     …I continued with KungFu which sub-divided as many styles did into the  ‘sport’ tournament side and ran classes in Tradition KungFu and Kickboxing ( Full, semi and Light contact). In mid 1980’s I was offered to go to The Garden of England – Kent to start up a new region for the School I trained with. I took this chance and luckily it worked out well as I could train and teach daily but meant I must commute some 130 miles for my lessons which, were becoming more fitness and competition based than traditional as was my wish.

Around this time I met a few people practicing different Arts including Wing-Chun, WTF Taekwondo and Tai Chi and began we exchanging practicing together enjoying the non-political atmosphere.. I met some exponents of Master Chu King Hung and begun exchanging techniques my interest was aroused and I begun practicing with them when available.

After becoming restless with the KungFu school I was learning from due to its mainly commercial focus, then upon meeting Tay Soon Tuan  in 1989 and being able to learn more external Chang Chuan, BaJi, Mantis and internal Martial art variants including Tai Chi, Ba Kua and Hsing-I.  A refreshing change, I quickly practiced with renewed vigour, attending weekend classes regularly. I realised the restrictions from the previous school immediately. The relaxed almost informal style of teaching was at first add but soon became desirable. The content being far larger and deeper with a never ending pool of knowledge.

This changed my style of transmission.

After some years with They Soon Tuan as  Kent Regional Instructor for his school. It became clear as time passed, that he was looking more to the commercial aspects rather than promoting Martial Arts and after some unsavoury incidents decided to leave the school.

I attended numerous workshops and seminars looking to broaden my knowledge until coming across Wang Hao Da, a Wu Tai Chi Master with George Zu as translator. This meeting changed my understanding of Tai Chi, experiencing expanding and releasing energies ( Peng-Lu) in a way i’d not previously felt. I was now looking for this level of understanding and a teacher willing to share. 

After moving to Germany, I continued my search attending workshops and events looking for that elusive quality absent in so many schools – Openness, curiosity with a desire to learn.

Having met some interesting and lovely people and schools, I settled on Ma Tsun Kuen Tai Chi Chuan led by Fernando Chedel. Here my journey started once more.

His method and approach was for me at first, quite confrontational as my pre-conceptions of what I thought Tai Chi is or should be.

The idea of – soft internal – somewhat different form that which I actually had been practicing. I, like many others’ it appears, have been practicing a version of KungFu practiced slowly. Which, although aesthetically pleasing and has some aerobic benefits with few Martial advantages.

My previous concept was in fact somewhat distorted.

Some History

Some Styles practiced

Tai Chi Chuan styles practiced