Every Great Journey Starts With One Step.

GM Seminars 2016 White Dragon Martial Arts

Join White Dragon on October 8-9, 2016 for our annual seminar series with World Reknown Choy Li Fut Kung Fu and Yang Style Tai Chi Master Doc Fai Wong. This opportunity comes only once a year so reserve your spot today!

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patina:  noun |pa·ti·na |\pə-ˈtē-nə : a surface appearance of something grown beautiful, especially with use or age.

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On Saturday, January 16, Master Nathan Fisher will be holding his annual seminar series for all Accelerated Black Sash Members at White Dragon Martial Arts Mira Mesa. 

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Are traditional martial arts incapable of change? Do contemporary martial arts lack foundation and substance? These are two critical questions facing practitioners as they begin the process of choosing a style. What will happen, they ask, if their traditional martial art must grow to meet 20th century demands? Can it sustain such change? Or, is this new art secure enough to withstand the hands of time? Is there enough moral fiber to carry it through the rough times? The only way to answer these difficult questions is to compare and contrast traditional and modern styles.Tai Chi for Seniors San Diego

According to the Oxford American Dictionary, tradition is “the handing down of beliefs or customs from one generation to another.” A traditionalist, the same source says, is a “person who follows or upholds traditional beliefs.” Therefore, a traditional martial art constitutes a style which has been standardized and passed through generation after generation of martial artist.

Three examples of traditional martial arts are Choy Li Fut, Kuk Sool Won and Kenpo. Choy Li Fut originated in the mid-1800s in China and included principles handed down from previous generations, its founder, Chan Heung, Borrowed the best techniques from three teachers (one from northern footwork, one from southern fist and one from southern Buddhist palm) and created one kung-fu style, The Korean martial art of Kuk Sool Won is a new traditional system, Although developed as late and early 1960s, it is a collection of ancient techniques and principles derived from original Korean martial arts.

Even more contemporary is Ed Parker’s Kenpo, an American Chinese martial art based on traditional martial systems. However, since the same Kenpo techniques and forms are taught in standardized fashion in virtually all the system’s schools, tradition has come to the style. According to the same reference book, modern is described as “new and experimental, not following traditional styles.”

Certainly Bruce Lee’s art of Jeet Kune Do could be called modern, However, assuming each legitimate Jeet Kune Do school is teaching the same principles, it also has earned the right to be called traditional. Lee and his followers believed JKD constituted a revolutionary step in martial concept by replacing worn fighting methods. But if that’s true, could JKD also meet the same fate in 50 to 100 years? Do JKD practitioners have to periodically change Lee’s concepts and teaching to maintain the art’s modern image?

mma bag workoutOne can plainly see that traditional modern are prone to overlap. A good martial art will encourage its instructors to make changes for the betterment of the system. At the same time, instructors of more recently developed systems (like mma or mixed martial arts) should refrain from calling traditional styles obsolete. After all, even the new martial arts have a background in the fundamental teaching of the ancient systems.

At the same time, a traditionalist who complains about contemporary martial arts should remember the value of any system is its ability to adapt to present-day needs. Today’s Choy Li Fut, while still considered a traditional system, is far more contemporary than the original version.

There is a place in the martial arts for both traditional and modern attitudes, Like a new house that cannot stand without a solid foundation, so too martial arts must have both traditional and modern values to maintain the past while building for the future.

by Grandmaster Doc Fai Wong Inside Kung Fu Magazine, March 1987

Editors Note: Many of today's top mixed martial arts fighters have backgrounds in traditional martial arts training. As the sport of MMA continues to evolve and the use of systems becomes more widespread, perhaps the question is more relevant today than every before.

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A Choy Li Fut joint locking demonstration by Master Nathan Fisher at an exhibition in 2003.

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On Saturday, January 24th, we had the privilege of hosting a three-part seminar series for students to learn directly from Master Nathan Fisher, the founder of White Dragon Martial Arts. Choy Li Fut and Tai Chi fundamentals were covered in depth, as well as the proper mindset one must adopt in order to achieve long-term training goals. It was a day packed with much wisdom and inspiration that will guide us through another meaningful year of training. Enjoy!

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by Tai-Sifu Don Tittle

Choy Li Fut Kung Fu Joint Locking

Kahm na pronounced "kum-na", roughly translates to the art of seizing, grasping and locking. Called Chin na in mandarin, this is the art of applying joint locking and breaking techniques.

Kahm Na is not its own "style" but is an integral part of most traditional Chinese martial arts systems. Historically, it is thought by many to be the Grandfather of many of today’s popular joint locking based systems such as ju jitsu, hapkido, and aikido. Joint Locking represents one quarter of the four skills of fighting that make arts such as Choy Li Fut and Yang Tai Chi Chuan such complete and versatile systems of self-defense.  

Kahm Na skills are an invaluable component to the serious martial artist’s arsenal because the techniques are extremely practical.  Since not every violent encounter will require lethal force, kahm na arms an individual with options to restrain and subdue an assailant rather than seriously injure them. And, for those situations where it’s your life or his, joint locking can easily become joint "breaking" by applying the techniques with more explosive force and energy, causing damage that can quickly debilitate an attacker.

Kahm na techniques are especially useful in weapon disarming situations as well as situations in which you are trying to prevent an attacker from gaining control of your weapon. Kahm na techniques are especially useful in weapon defense situations, because they can be used to quickly and effectively disarm an opponent. If you work in security or law enforcement, kahm na is great for retaining control of any weapons an assailant might try to take away from you.

Another component of kahm na that is little known is "saw hau" or "bai hei", which means locking the throat and sealing the breath. These are the chocking techniques of the art. Again, these techniques are extremely practical because if there’s no blood and oxygen going to your opponent’s brain he can't hurt you.  In fact he can't do much of anything because he'll be unconscious! It takes less than ten seconds to render even the largest person unconscious with a well-executed choke.

I had the great privilege of acquiring my kahm na education from my Sifu, Master Nathan Fisher, as well as from his teachers Grandmaster Doc Fai Wong and Great Grandmaster’s Hu Yuen Cho and Wong Gong, all high level masters in the Choy Li Fut Kung Fu system. Students can learn direct application of these kahm na skills integrated with striking, kicking, and throwing within the self-defense techniques taught at White Dragon Martial Arts. 

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Xinhui, China. This video depicts the fourth day of our trip: May 18, 2013. (Yes, the first three days were all spent travelling across time zones from San Diego!) That morning, we visited the Hung Sing Choy Li Fut School of Xinhui. And then in the evening, we joined the biggest birthday bash—in celebration of Great Grandmaster Wong Gong's 85th—ever! Epically epic.

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Grandmaster doc fai wong seminars

Join us Saturday & Sunday, October 11 & 12 , 2014 for our annual seminars with Grandmaster Doc Fai Wong. This year Grandmaster will be teaching two Choy Li Fut Kung Fu hand forms, the Gung Ji Pattern Fist and the Supreme Ultimate Fist. He will also be teaching the rare Choy Li fut Twin Butterfly Knives. The final topic will be the Tai Chi Staff Form. 

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Nuestra Misión y Valores...

En White Dragon Martial Arts, nuestra misión es ser el mejor del mundo en mejorar las vidas de nuestros estudiantes a través de la práctica de las artes marciales. Logramos esta misión a través de nuestro método único de entrenamiento y por inculcar valores fundamentales. Por enseñar valores importantes come la disciplina, la humildad, la actitud positiva, y el respeto por uno mismo y por los demás, nuestros estudiantes aprenden que las artes marciales son una manera de vivir, no sólo un sistema de defensa personal. El método de White Dragon es enfocarnos en desarrollar una mente más fuerte igual a un cuerpo más fuerte, con la esperanza de producir individuos seguros y completos, capaces de alcanzar la excelencia en todas áreas de la vida.

¡Entrene Duro, Viva Mejor!

White Dragon empareja cada estudiante con su propio instructor para proveer el entrenamiento personal y de grupo más completo que se puede encontrar. Nuestra combinación única de Kung Fu, Tai Chi, Kickboxing y AMM crea la experiencia más eficaz y completa que le ayudará a ponerse en forma, enseñarle como defenderse, y mejorar su vida de maneras que usted no sabía que fueran posibles. Estamos dedicados a proveer para usted la más alta calidad de instrucción de artes marciales a través de un ambiente positivo, y basado en valores, tanto como un programa flexible para adaptarnos a su horario. Nuestra visión es ayudarle a estar en forma física y desarrollar confianza en sí mismo por estudiar las artes marciales para que usted pueda tener éxito en todos los aspectos de la vida.
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