|Testimonials - Chinese Internal Martial
Arts : Wu Dao Gong (Natural Style Kung Fu)
The system of Wu Dao
Gong is based on the Chinese internal martial arts of Tai Chi, Ba Gua
and Xing Yi and incorporates traditional Chinese medicine and
meditation. Authentic martial art training is much more than
fighting; it is about self development. Although the training is
physical, you go beyond the mere physical. You discover what it
means to be natural. Your spirit gradually shines through in your
training, and ultimately in everything you say and do. You will
then understand the reason that this training is called martial ART!
"I want to tell you how
extremely beneficial the whole Wu Dao Gong experience has been for me. I find more
balance in my life, I feel in better control of my emotions, I am able
to focus better and longer than before. All the instructors are
extremely qualified and always very helpful
discouraging you! They all are very good at picking up what you are not
doing correctly and always convey their advice very clearly and very
gently. I would highly recommend this course to anyone who is looking
at increasing personal well-being, (re)connecting mind and body. A
beautiful and fullfilling journey of endless discoveries, a sentiment of
progressive connectedness between the physical, mental and spiritual.
Kudos to the whole team!"
Christophe, IT Consultant
starting Natural Style Kung Fu about two years ago, I have never felt
better physically or mentally. I find I am generally more relaxed, am
able to cope with stress better, and of course feel more confident about
able to defend myself if
the need ever arises. The overall approach to training is a refreshing
change from many other forms of martial arts, and the people involved
are all very friendly, making it very enjoyable to go to
John, Air Force Officer
have been participating in Wu Dao Gong training for some eighteen
months. When I commenced training, I was substantially overweight, a
diabetic with unstable blood sugars and very unfit with high blood
pressure. Since I commenced training, I have reduced my weight by two
clothes sizes, my blood sugars have become completely stable and my
blood pressure normal. The training is developmental in that in each
training session, one learns more about the movements and their
application. It is hard, but no one is expected to do more than they
are physically capable of doing. Each participant moves at his own pace
in developing his capacity and skill. The contemplative aspects and the
whole process of internal strength development are remarkable processes
to experience. I am greatly appreciative of the guidance of our
teachers in the process of developing skill in this art."
Land Resource Researcher
"The positive effects of
undertaking this authentic martial arts training were immediately
apparent in the physical changes to my body. Through the regular
training, I felt stronger and had much more energy. In particular, I
learnt how to relax and let go of tensions created by every day life.
Since beginning Kung Fu training, I have felt physically fitter than
when I participated in and practised other sports in the past.
The Kung Fu training has helped me to develop a sense of overall well
being and mental clarity. Kung Fu training has improved my self
confidence, which has helped to develop a positive energy in other
aspects of my work and private life.
Through Kung Fu
training, I have learnt to look within myself for the strength I need to
make life changing decisions. Equally, through practising martial arts
I have become less judgemental and much more
had never noticed how much tension I was carrying in my body.
beginning the Internal Martial Arts training, tense areas have begun to
relax and, perhaps more importantly, I have gained an awareness of my
body which allows me to feel and begin to relax tension where I hadn't
previously. For someone who has always had shoulders like lumps of
granite, this is an amazing experience! As a direct result of this
awareness, I am able to handle the stress of a demanding study workload
much more effectively."
Nick, Law Student
"I've done a lot of martial arts, starting out since I was about seven
years old and I've done a lot of styles, even some of the more
traditional training such as Shaolin. When I started with the Tai Chi
Academy earlier this year, the first thing I noticed was that unlike all
the other schools I had been to, there was a very calming and peaceful
nature to the people and the training. The element of ego was not
present and I found this helped me learn a lot faster and really
understand what was being taught to me.
The instructors seem to have unlimited amounts of patience and are
always so willing to help or answer questions. Another difference I
have found with the Academy is that they are very interested in helping
you to become the best you can. Other institutions I have studied with
are more concerned with how long you have been there and how well you
get along with your instructors and the decision for advancement appears
to be more based on social skills as opposed to actual merits.
The training itself has been really beneficial for my health. As I work
in the IT industry, I spend most of my day sitting in my office behind a
computer screen. I've found that my posture has fixed itself up and I
am not getting the same aches and sores in my shoulders and neck as I
used to. I am constantly aware of my body now and remain relaxed at all
times. This is great for Canberra winters as through relaxation, my
circulation is better and I don't feel the cold as much!
I also have done Reiki and I've found the practice to be very beneficial
and complimentary for when I use Reiki. I haven't really gotten sick
since starting the training and I feel really good all of the time now.
I think overall the training is great for reducing stress as well. I
find quite often, work can become stressful and all it takes is to
quietly slip away and find somewhere I can do Qigong for five minutes!
The training is something which I look forward to every time and find
myself eagerly awaiting training days during the week and weekend. I've
found this training so good that I've recommended it to all my friends,
some of whom have joined up and completely agree."
Jaden, IT Manager
first started practising Internal Martial Arts, Natural Style Kung Fu,
two years ago as a fun way of getting fitter and healthier. It
has since become much more than a simple fitness program. It has taught
me how to relax my body yet develop real power, to focus my mind. My
concentration has improved and my confidence has increased. It has also
greatly improved my self-esteem, enabling me to decrease the level of
anti-depressant medication I take daily. Others have also noticed the
physical changes that have occurred over the two years. While I have
noticed the toning of muscles in my arms and legs, others have noticed
the overall change in my general body shape - an unexpected benefit."
Kylie, Network Officer
had been considering learning a martial art for a number of years, but I
have always been deterred by the hyper-aggressive attitude of many
schools. A friend convinced me to try Wu Dao Gong. To my great
surprise, it was not at all like my preconceptions, and within a week I
The training emphasis is on mental discipline and self-development, with
no place for aggression. Many of the exercises appear quite simple, yet
contain endless subtleties which gradually become apparent through
practice (or Brett's explanations!). There's always something new to
The benefits I'm experiencing from this training are unquestionable. I
have more energy, feel stronger yet more relaxed, and am in better shape
than at any time in the last ten years. I'm also finding it much easier
to remain calm and
focused, which is proving very helpful with my studies."
Andrew, PhD Student
Wu Dao Gong at any age.
I have been attending the Chinese Internal Martial
Arts class for just over two years now and Iím not sure, sometimes how I
am still here. This year, my twenty-seven year old son also started
training with me.
The first time I came, I poked my nose into the 6pm class at Aranda one
very cold and windy winter night. All I saw in that brief glimpse were
many young men training hard. I felt overwhelmed and scurried away
before I could go in. After a bit of a chat with Fontane, I decided to
try again and even though I was much older than most of the people there
and the other two women left shortly after I started, I instantly loved
the training and something inside me became hooked.
I have never been the kind of person who has done a lot of physical
activity. I prefer to lie down and read a book. I wonít exercise
simply to stay fit but the fact that I was learning how to defend myself
while also becoming fit was wonderful for me.
In the last two years I have noticed big changes in myself that I
attribute directly to Wu Dao Gong training. I am stronger and more
flexible and I have a very different attitude towards my body. I am
calmer and more able to manage anxiety. I notice that my physical
response to anxiety making situations is totally different. I am
learning how to manage my own mental limitations and this, I suppose is
one of the best things about the internal martial arts training. Whilst
it is very egalitarian and there is no competition on the outside,
inside oneís head there is all kinds of competition going on. I tell
myself that because of my age or any number of other variables
it is not possible for me to continue, to be good, to be like others.
Yet through all of this, I train every day and the benefits are
enormous. I am noticing that I enjoy my life more and more as I learn
to keep going and simply practise every day. I think there is something
profound to be learnt here for all aspects of life.
my story isn't the average one, I believe I must express how much the
Tai Chi and the Internal Martial Arts courses have changed my life.
Coming from a childhood of divorce, abuse and fear, I spent a decade of
my life addicted to drugs and alcohol with a very low self-esteem and
relatively no hope for a positive future. Several years ago, I had
become so angry as well as anxious and depressed that I took up Tai Chi,
just to try and calm down. This was truly the beginning of my journey
down the positive path of life. The Qigong as well as the slow moving
traditional Yang style form 'tricked' my mind into looking at life at a
different pace. They also taught me how to focus on the moves so
intensely that my 'wild
mind could no longer wander aimlessly through innumerable thoughts. The
positive vibes given off by the serene instructors were also infectious
as well as inspiring. I never knew humans could be so happy!:)
The Martial Arts course has been the true epiphany in my life's story.
Growing up in the USA, I never learnt the concepts of discipline,
motivation, dedication or determination. I'm no master Ė very far from
It Ė but the 'old
didn't even think I would
last one lesson of Kung Fu. At first, I found it very hard to come to
class as I knew the workout was quite intense; sometimes I just felt so
low on energy it took everything I had to just show up. Now I look
forward to the lessons as I know no matter how bad I am feeling, I'm
going to leave feeling great. The mix of meditation and hard training
has made me a much more positive, confident and loving person. I have a
long way to go before I'll feel truly proficient as a martial artist,
but I look back at myself when I started and I can't believe how much
I've improved mentally, physically, spiritually and emotionally.
I have to say, this training has been a major factor in turning a lost
and negative individual into a happy person with integrity and who
contributes to society. I only hope that one day I will achieve the
level of tranquil peace and internal power that the instructors exude
every time I am in their presence."
Jesse, Professional Writing Student / Internet Journalist
I started Natural Style Kung Fu, I had wanted to learn a martial art for
self defence for a long time. I also thought it would be very hard to
find a good quality class that did not involve hitting bricks and
yelling a lot in a room full of angry guys, so I kept putting off making
the effort to find a class. I think on some level I also believed I did
not have the physical strength or mental suitability to pursue martial
This feeling of unsuitability became more and more of a deterrent as I
entered my thirties, climbed the ladder in the public service, was
diagnosed with an underactive thyroid and put on weight. Generally
speaking, my lifestyle was not a very healthy one, physically or
mentally. I drank more than I should, ate a lot of junk and did not get
enough exercise. I also had a number of problems with anxiety,
something which made my day to day
A co-worker attending the Natural Style Kung Fu class talked about the
class one day at morning tea. He was especially appreciative of the
health benefits and lack of formalities. I decided to give it a try and
manageable and inspiring -
and very challenging. While there were a lot of men in the class, the
class was not full of aggressive men which made it easier to be one of
the few women. Now there are a lot more girls sticking with the
classes, which is great to see.
I've been attending classes for two years now and the physical health
benefits have been very noticeable. The whole way I move has changed, I
drink much less than I used to, and my doctor has recently cut back my
strong, and my body is more a friend than an enemy.
The most significant benefits for me however have been mental. While
people at class talk a lot about the physical strain of training, the
mental challenges have been for me the most rewarding aspect of the
Overcoming these challenges has helped a lot with my self confidence in
other areas of my life as well. When I decided I needed to lose weight
recently, I braced myself for a difficult time, especially as I had had
eating disorder in my
teens and had a long history of trying and failing to manage my health
I was surprised at just how easy it was to make good changes
this time. Now that I have worked out strategies to stop my
self-defeating behaviour at training, these skills have been very useful
and transferable elsewhere in my life.
I've also noticed that it's harder to provoke me, I don't stress out as
much, and overall I am a much calmer happier person than I was when I
first started. Natural Style Kung Fu is not always easy, especially for
us who come to it a
older and with a little more mental baggage to work through, but for me,
that's all the more reason to keep doing it. It has definitely helped
me in all areas of my life, and I'm looking forward to
seeing where I can
go with it next."
Catherine, Public Servant
began training in Wu Dao Gong after doing a number of years of Tai Chi
with the Academy. I remember feeling familiar with some of the
fundamental principles as well as feeling a little better prepared for
some of the
movements we learned. The training is challenging but the learning
atmosphere is very supportive. However, after the first few weeks I
remember thinking that I would never be able to punch as
powerfully as the
more advanced students. I felt tired and breathless very quickly.
Parts of my body ached, and sometimes quite deep inside the joints and
muscles it seemed. I was convinced that I would never
cope with this
training and that I would never achieve some of the demands such as
being able to walk with my thighs parallel to the floor (the Chicken
Legs Walking). I also found myself feeling very uncoordinated and
thought that the stated benefits would be a long way off.
It is now quite some time since those first months of
martial arts for me and I am truly glad to have stuck with it long
enough to have achieved some of the basic training outcomes that I never
thought I would. This training is not for the impatient but it will
reward the patient and the persistent, and even those of us somewhere in
between. I feel much more relaxed when trying to punch, and it is
amazing how much more force comes out when your movements and your
relaxation levels are as they should be. Sometimes even Chicken Legs
feels relaxing! The challenge, of course, continues. What makes these
arts all the more enjoyable is that I think I am pleasantly addicted to
the training. Despite still needing to train a lot more, I do feel odd
when I miss daily training and my body reminds me of what it needs to do
to feel better. This is excellent motivation. Also, Wu Dao Gong
practice (as well as Tai Chi practice) is the type of exercise that
seems to give you more energy than you begin with. Great for lunchtime
at work on a busy day! Sometimes after practice it feels as though you
have been thoroughly cleaned from the inside out.
What adds to the addiction is the benefit you can see the practice
having in everyday life as well as during training: the physical
improvements to strength, balance and efficiency of movement you start
to notice, the improved concentration, the confidence to face
challenges, and also some emotional benefits. Much like watching out
for an incoming punch or sensing tension in your shoulders, the practice
also seems to train sensitivity to your own emotional reactions. If the
training also results in developing the ability to be patient even with
those people who probably don't deserve the benefit of your patience,
then this is surely a complete and very useful system. When the
training provides such widespread benefits, it is easy to be addicted!"
am just finishing off my first year of Wu Dao Gong and it has changed my
life and my body.
I used to be an avid gym girl. When I started Wu Dao Gong, I wasnít
quite sure if this was for me so I went once a week and kept going to
the gym. After a few months, I noticed my body had changed more in that
time than it had in all the years of gym training. I now go to all the
training sessions each week and train a little each other day. I
havenít been inside my gym in over eight months.
I have also done the course in Taoist Qigong and have found that the two
complement each other. I feel relaxed, confident, alert and better at
dealing with the stresses of my life and job. My body and mind have
never felt this good.
I would recommend this course to everyone. It is a brilliant confidence
booster as well as a great way of keeping yourself healthy and centred.
The teachers are all very patient. There is no grading. There are just
beginners, intermediate and advanced. The best part is that you can
take your time and learn at your own pace; there is no pressure of tests
and belts. People are there to change their way of life, not to
compete; the only competition you have there is with yourself."
Emanuela, Promotions and Marketing
have trained in Wu Dao Gong for one and a half terms and have recently
begun to see some of the changes and benefits that the teachers and
senior students have spoken about. I have been amazed by how much power
I can generate and how relaxed I can remain in the process. There are
innumerable other changes and benefits, but if I tried to describe every
little one, I donít think I would do justice to the teaching. I feel as
if I have just started to take my first tentative steps along the Wu Dao
Gong path and with every step a little more of the path becomes visible
and the desire to take another step becomes stronger. I would
definitely recommend the training to anyone who wishes to learn a
comprehensive and effective martial art or who simply wants to better
understand themselves and bodies."
Wu Dao Gong
Martial Arts Course