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Imperial Dragon Kung Fu Instructors

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Definition of Sifu

Sifu in Chinese is used to describe someone who is a master at something, in the context of Imperial Dragon Kung Fu it is martial arts.  Sifu actually means someone who teaches you a kind of skills or techniques and comes from the Chinese word "師父" or "師傅" Si(師) means "teacher" and fu(父) means father. 

In class it is used as a sign of respect for an instructor.

Sifus are identified by the wearing of a black sash, which is the highest of the standard grades achieveable in Imperial Dragon Kung Fu. Thereafter subsequent grades are called 'Degrees', and are signified by the wearing of a band of yellow on one end of the Black Sash: 1 band for 1st Degree Black Sash, 2 bands for 2nd Degree Black Sash, etc. In Imperial Dragon Kung FU 7th Degree Black Sash is the highest rank attainable.

Sifu Jay Faulkner - 5th Degree Black Sash

Sifu JayMy first foray into the martial arts was actually in fencing and archery, rather than the 'traditionally' viewed combat/self-defence arts.  I took this up in boarding school in Germany and then, after moving to Holland, continued it there where I fenced as part of the local team, competitively.

I took up the martial 'arts proper' in 1988, which was Golden Dragon Kung Fu, originally under Frank Murney.  One of his instructors - Steve Timblin - split from that style and formed his own school called Arn Yoon Gung Tao with two of his own assistant instructors (Cyril Flannigan and Naiem Qureshi) and that is where I ventured next.  Arn Yoon Gung Tao and kung fu would fill my life for the next years as I went through the ranks there to attain third degree black sash and taking over the running of the school when my Sifu had a devastating injury in which he lost a leg.

After getting two other students up to black sash (David Lee and Andrew Magwood) I decided to move to London and whilst there I trained further in fencing (returning to it for the first time in many years) as well as trying preying mantis kung fu.

When I returned to Northern Ireland Cyril Flannigan and Andrew Magwood had renamed the school to Imperial Dragon Kung Fu, putting all of the lessons learned in different paths together into a new and improved style.

Like both Golden Dragon and Arn Yoon Gung Tao, Imperial Dragon is firmly based in traditional five animal kung fu.  However it has adapted and changed over time so that it has as many of the strengths of other martial arts that we have experienced and less of the weakness, caused predominantly be an inward looking exclusivity and grip on the past.

I am now in my twenty sixth year of studying martial arts, and my twenty second as a black sash - achieving 5th Degree in 2009 - and while I have dabbled in a few other styles, including judo, shotokan karate, tai jitsu and tae kwon do and enjoyed some aspects of each one I always returned to kung fu.  I felt then and still feel now that it is the main, core, style for me.

My favourite part of kung fu has always been around the animal styles and characteristics and have a particular fondness for snake style especially.  I have been known to also be accused of practicising 'lazy' kung fu as I follow the belief that if you can do one technique, but do it well, then there is no need to do more than necessary in any situation.

I am happily married, with two young children, and outside of kung fu I work as an information security specialist by day and a writer by night (and day, when I can get away with it) too.

While I have never allowed it to affect me (or at least as much as I am able) I actually suffer from a mild form of spina-bifida and a muscle disease.  These two things combined to make me weaker than normal and fatigue faster.  However as I have never allowed them to stop me from achieving my goals I am a firm believer that anyone - regardless of ability or fitness - can achieve theirs too ...they just need to take the first step!

 

Sifu Richard Dawson - 3rd Degree Black Sash

Sifu RichardLorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Ut neque sapien, mattis quis magna sed, eleifend commodo turpis. Maecenas consequat eros non libero bibendum, vitae ultrices diam lobortis. Sed est leo, tincidunt eget lacinia a, lobortis quis est. Aenean interdum at justo quis ultricies. Pellentesque habitant morbi tristique senectus et netus et malesuada fames ac turpis egestas. Curabitur viverra elit adipiscing, semper libero et, aliquam lorem. Proin sollicitudin, risus sit amet aliquam laoreet, lorem ante auctor sapien, eget cursus sem dui eu nibh. Donec id sem dignissim, congue orci sit amet, aliquam neque. Curabitur sagittis libero purus, eget bibendum odio sollicitudin quis. Nam malesuada libero in urna malesuada congue. Sed sed sagittis ligula. Pellentesque quis feugiat justo, hendrerit viverra massa.

Aenean fermentum tellus sed vehicula placerat. Donec convallis lectus a fringilla vulputate. Pellentesque ullamcorper feugiat nisl, nec mattis ligula euismod vel. Integer ut sagittis turpis. Pellentesque mattis ac enim ut auctor. Vestibulum mattis convallis laoreet. Vivamus in egestas orci. Praesent eu lorem nisi. Curabitur leo diam, vehicula eu tortor non, pellentesque porta sapien. Fusce dapibus facilisis velit ac eleifend. Nam aliquam porta massa, et vestibulum mauris bibendum id. Aenean eget fermentum ligula, eget viverra lorem. Sed imperdiet adipiscing sem ac tristique. Mauris sodales eros lectus, id venenatis massa ultrices eget.

 

Sifu Steve Quinn - Black Sash

Sifu Steve

My name is Stephen Quinn, my DoB is 17 September 1982. Since I was a young boy, I have had a passion for martial arts. I would watch Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan movies, and I loved to run about the garden pretending to be one of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, but it wasn't until the end of 1997, when I was 15, that I first took my first steps in to martial arts training. 
 
I attended the Tuesday evening class at Tandragee and moved up through the ranks, making some very good friends along the way. Once I was 17, and able to drive, I began to attend the Thursday class in Armagh and soon got my green sash and was invited to become a Wasu, an assistant instructor. A lot of training ensued each week with two normal classes, one or two instructors classes and a sparring class. With 7 hours of mat time per week, plus my own individual training, I was able to attain my purple sash in 2001.
 
In 2001 I began studying at the University of Manchester and every holiday when at home I returned to class and trained and taught. In 2003 I grades for my brown sash. 
 
Upon completion of my degree I moved back to Northern Ireland in 2006 to work as a bridge engineer for a local engineering consultancy firm in Belfast. I got married to Jenny, whom I met at Kung Fu, and I have a young son. While working in Belfast I have continued to train and teach and in 2012 I grades for my black sash.
 
During my martial arts career, I have tried a number of different styles of martial arts, including Tae Kwon Do, Shaolin Kung Fu, Vale Tudo, Jujitsu and Capoeria, although each was interesting and different, I never found any of these styles to be as much fun or as rewarding as Imperial Dragon Kung Fu.
 
In training with Imperial Dragon Kung Fu, I have found that this style is a great all rounder with traditional elements of training such as techniques and forms, and freestyle elements such as self defence training and sparring. My personal favourite elements are fitness training, sparring and self defence.

 

Sifu Lyndon Irwin - Black Sash

Sifu LyndonLorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Ut neque sapien, mattis quis magna sed, eleifend commodo turpis. Maecenas consequat eros non libero bibendum, vitae ultrices diam lobortis. Sed est leo, tincidunt eget lacinia a, lobortis quis est. Aenean interdum at justo quis ultricies. Pellentesque habitant morbi tristique senectus et netus et malesuada fames ac turpis egestas. Curabitur viverra elit adipiscing, semper libero et, aliquam lorem. Proin sollicitudin, risus sit amet aliquam laoreet, lorem ante auctor sapien, eget cursus sem dui eu nibh. Donec id sem dignissim, congue orci sit amet, aliquam neque. Curabitur sagittis libero purus, eget bibendum odio sollicitudin quis. Nam malesuada libero in urna malesuada congue. Sed sed sagittis ligula. Pellentesque quis feugiat justo, hendrerit viverra massa.

Aenean fermentum tellus sed vehicula placerat. Donec convallis lectus a fringilla vulputate. Pellentesque ullamcorper feugiat nisl, nec mattis ligula euismod vel. Integer ut sagittis turpis. Pellentesque mattis ac enim ut auctor. Vestibulum mattis convallis laoreet. Vivamus in egestas orci. Praesent eu lorem nisi. Curabitur leo diam, vehicula eu tortor non, pellentesque porta sapien. Fusce dapibus facilisis velit ac eleifend. Nam aliquam porta massa, et vestibulum mauris bibendum id. Aenean eget fermentum ligula, eget viverra lorem. Sed imperdiet adipiscing sem ac tristique. Mauris sodales eros lectus, id venenatis massa ultrices eget.

 

Sifu Johnny Graham - Black Sash

Sifu JohnnyWe'll I started my journey as a martial artist at the young age of 21. A bit of a late comer? Probably not since Kung Fu is great at adapting to the student. 

Ever since a young age, I had an interest in martial arts but never had the opportunity to try anything out. As a child of the 80s, The Karate Kid holds a special place in my heart :) So at 21, I had the opportunity to try Kung Fu with my cousin and one of his mates (Sifu Quinn). One black sash later and here I am. 

My favourite thing other than the social aspect is learning new techniques and discovering new abilities that you never actually knew you had. 

On top of Kung Fu, I am happily married and spend what little remaining time I have helping out at the Boys Brigade and the Duke of Edinburgh Award. Oh and I am also a bit of a movie buff, gaming geek and book worm.

 

Definition of Wasu

Students who have progressed to a minimum of Green Sash, and who demonstrate an understanding of and commitment to the teachings of Imperial Dragon Kung Fu, can be promoted to Wasu (or Assistant Instructor) rank. This is marked by the wearing of a red sash with their own grade sash. This rank outranks all others but Black Belt, or Sifu, and is a reflection of the importance placed on teaching in Imperial Dragon Kung Fu.

Wasu Neil Stewart

Coming soon

 

Wasu Kris Stewart

Coming soon

 

Wasu John

Coming soon

 

Wasu Scott

Coming soon


“Never forget that, at the most, the teacher can give you fifteen percent of the art. The rest you have to get for yourself through practise and hard work. I can show you the path but I can not walk it for you.” ~ Master Tan Soh Tin