Everybody's Kung-Fu Fighting in an Online Martial Arts School

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No matter where you live, you can study the three "internal" Chinese fighting arts of Chen Tai Chi (the original martial art-version of Tai Chi), Hsing-I Chuan, and Baguazhang. Sifu Ken Gullette, highly praised teacher and tournament champion, has launched a virtual kung-fu school with hours of video instruction and downloadable material at http://www.internalfightingarts.com.

Ken Gullette (in red) and some of his students with trophies after a tournament.

These are powerful martial arts for self-defense

Move over, Grasshopper. You don't have to travel to China to study kung-fu anymore. No matter where you live, you can now study kung-fu online. Ken Gullette, a tournament champion and highly-acclaimed teacher with 35 years of martial arts experience, has launched a video-intensive online school to teach Chen Tai Chi, Hsing-I Chuan, and Baguazhang--the three Chinese internal arts. The school is located at http://www.internalfightingarts.com.

"These are powerful martial arts for self-defense," said Gullette. "People think of tai chi as a slow-motion exercise for the elderly. That's because tai chi is misunderstood and most teachers don't truly understand it. In the video lessons on my virtual school, I unlock the secrets of tai chi and other arts toshow how to develop internal power."

The online school has many hours of video instruction. Each lesson lasts between three and 15 minutes. For a monthly fee, members can study any or all of the three internal arts. Members join for a variety of reasons:

  • Members can pursue certification in one or all of the arts,
  • They may just study for personal information,
  • They may study to back up what they're learning from another instructor,
  • Members may achieve rank through the website in a curriculum that takes them from white sash to black sash.

Members have joined the virtual kung-fu school from the U.S., Japan, the Netherlands, France, Belgium, and other nations. Promotions are done through video coaching. Students send Gullette videos or put them up privately on the Internet. He reviews the video and replies with his own video coaching session, created just for the student. In this way, students can receive high-quality personal instruction.

"As long as you have a computer and Internet access, you can study high-quality Chinese internal martial arts anytime, anywhere," Gullette says. The virtual school teaches fighting techniques for all three arts, plus the broadsword, straight sword, staff, spear, elk horn knives, and single and double sticks. Students are provided with all the instruction they would expect at any high-quality kung fu school, including hand strikes, kicks, blocks, and an emphasis on joint locks and takedown techniques.

Gullette admits there is so much information, video lessons and downloadable e-books, that students may be tempted to dabble in all three arts rather than putting themselves on a real learning path. He urges students to begin with a section on the site titled "Internal Strength."

"Too many people believe the power of these arts comes from something mystical," said Gullette. "They focus on this invisible energy called 'chi' and they miss, or aren't told, about the physical skills they need. This site is dedicated to pulling back the curtain and showing principles for the physical skills that are required by these arts--skills that most Chinese kung-fu masters wouldn't teach you for many years."

Gullette has learned from some of the world's best tai chi masters, including members of the family that created tai chi, including Grandmaster Chen Xiaowang and his brother, Grandmaster Chen Xiaoxing, both direct descendants of the creator of tai chi, Chen Wangting. He has also learned from students and "disciples" of the Chen family (a disciple is a kung-fu student who is "adopted" by a master and studies only from him).

"These people look like ordinary men, but they're like Olympic athletes--extremely skilled at tai chi," Gullette said. "They can break an attacker in half before you know what's happening."

The gratifying part of the online school is the feedback he's getting from members. "They can't believe all the information, and they're very grateful someone is putting it online."

Click on this link to watch a free sample lesson--a video that shows you the self-defense applications of the tai chi movement "Single Whip." It's a movement that is common in all styles of tai chi.

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Ken Gullette

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