Youth Kung FuFor Teens and Adults
Our youth martial arts programming at Manitou Center is built upon the same traditional Chinese martial arts foundation as our programs for older adults. We focus on creating an environment where our kung fu curriculum creates an opportunity for participants learn about ourselves through the way we move, breathe, and live into our training. Students start by learning basic kung fu building blocks and develop to move with their body, mind, and breath as an integrated system. This is accomplished through training movements that open and stretch the body as well as condition the muscles, bones and cardiovascular system. Students learn to use their body to generate power through relaxation and fluidity rather than stiff muscular force. As students advance, they being to learn kung Fu forms (sets), weapons, self-defense, and sparring.
Emphasis is further placed upon students working together as as a community rather than attempting to out compete one another…we strive to create a learning environment that fosters not only development in the specific skills we are practicing, but also addresses our more comprehensive human development. As part of this, we uphold a Chinese martial arts tradition, a code of conduct known as wu de, that holds martial arts practitioners to developing respect, humility, trust, virtue, and honor in our training and in our lives.
As a community, our main goals are to develop ourselves holistically in a manner that supports sustainable wellness for all as individuals and as responsible members of a martial arts family. Martial arts techniques and life practices are a mechanism by which we aim to accomplish this goal. Through training ourselves, we bring our best selves to our families, our communities, and to our world.
Choy li fut Kung fu
Choy Li Fut is a system that can provide a lifetime of learning. There are over 150 forms (sets) in the Kung Fu System of Choy LI Fut. This includes hand, weapon, partner, and internal sets. You may ask why such a large system? It’s not a system of Kung Fu that is meant for any one person to learn and master it all. Rather it provides the opportunity for persons with different body types and abilities to improve their health, become proficient at many techniques, and continue to learn and challenge themselves.
Choy li fut is a system that was founded by Chan Heung to suit the average person. Many martial arts styles have forms and techniques that are suited for specific body types and abilities. Students practicing with Manitou Center are trained in a tradition of martial arts systems that promote health and longevity as well developing proficiency in a highly effective system of self defense.
Miao Kong Martial Arts Association
Historically, around 1928, the Koumingtang in China established Zhong Yang Guo Shu Guan. Within this organization, the dream was to establish a national martial arts school that would bring famous teachers from across China together in one place. This would offer students an opportunity to study that had never been achieved before that time.
As the Kuomingtang was forced to move to Taiwan, part of the student population from this school moved across the strait as well. In approximately 1983, a cultural university was opened in Taiwan with the idea of again offering interested students a venue to step into this cultural tradition. Within this university, students studied over 100 forms with that idea that in doing so, they could distinguish and hold fundamental knowledge regarding the myriad of kung fu styles they may encounter as they went on to become martial arts coaches in their own right. Mr. Lee Chang Ren was a student within that Zhong Guo Wen Hua Da Xue.
In 1998, the Miao Kong Martial arts association was formed by Lee Chang Ren and Lee Chang Chih. The main focus of kung fu within this system was Bei Quan, or Northern Fist Kung fu. Other styles were also included, such as suen bing, nan chuan, ba ji, and zhan quan. The decision of what styles are included within a particular course of study is taken from these traditions.
Paul Stern came into contact with Miao Kong and Lee Chang Ren and Lee Chang Chih in 1998 when he moved to Taiwan. During his time in Taiwan, he became a student and disciple (徒弟) of Lee Chang Ren and his brother Lee Chang Chih. He is a licensed instructor and coach within the Miao Kong Martial Arts Association.