March 2006 Newsletter
Guro Amy Going Away Dinner and Benefit
The PAMA family gathered together at Sunny Gardens to send Guru Amy off to Germany with good fortunes and well wishes. It was an wonderful night filled with laughs and positive energy. Get well soon, Amy. Before you know it, we'll be having your welcome home celebration :)
On February 19, 2006, a fund-raising benefit cocktail party for Guru Amy was held at the Triumph brewery in Princeton. Over 50 supporters came to the event to help raise funds to assist the cost of her on-going treatment in Germany. At the event, the winners of the drawing that was being promoted at the school over the last few weeks were announced. The winners of the various prizes were notified and posted at the school. In all, 10 prizes were awarded and a lot was raised in just two weeks.
We all would like to thank everyone who participated in the event. It was an incredible outpouring of generosity and support from many of you in the PAMA family. Please keep sending your good thoughts and "well-wishes" to Amy every chance you get.
Student of the Month
- Greg Smith -
What is your profession and background?
My profession is Senior Vice President for LEE HECHT HARRISON, a leading global career management firm. I've been there 10 years. Prior to that I've spent 15 years in sales and marketing at Xerox Corporation, A,T,&T, Learning International, Dun & Bradstreet, & SkyTel. During this time I also ran my own entertainment company of DJ's, bands, special event planners, and promoters. I hold a business degree in marketing from Seton Hall University.
What first turned you on to martial arts?
I was first introduced to martial arts at the age of 4 through my father who was a shotokan master. I formally trained at various schools, later being an assistant instructor at the YMCA's in Newark and Plainfield, NJ. During this time, like most of us, I loved and studied Bruce Lee. I also loved Muhammad Ali and used to watch all of his fights with my Dad. However I took a break from formal training to play basketball in high school and college. After a brief NBA tryout that did not materialize, I had a desire to train again to re-obtain much of the balance I lost from no longer playing basketball at the highest level.
What was your motivation for coming to PAMA?
My motivation for coming to PAMA came from a former PAMA student and long time high school friend, Howard Arnette. Howard and I were both good athletes in high school and in great shape. Later we both got out of shape due to corporate life. After seeing him at a party, I notice he was in fantastic shape and had a different energy than before. When I inquired about what got him there, he introduced me to PAMA, gave me Jeet Kune Do, the text book, and explained Sifu's affiliation the art of JKD, Dan Inosanto and Bruce Lee. I waited awhile, joined the school, then took a break because the art was so different from what I was used to. However I could not resist returning out of curiosity and desire to learn what I had loved to watch. I was later reminded of how learning never stops and how we all grow with new challenges. Since then my motivations have been different.
What do you most enjoy about your training?
What I enjoy most about our training are:
The level of proficiency, precision, planning and intensity of Sifu, even down to the music :)
The challenge of learning new material and pushing this 48 year old body to undefined limits
The staff, other students in the academy, and visiting Martial Arts Masters
The preservation of a unique art that is to some extent relatively lost
The practicality of the drills and techniques
What are your goals you hope to achieve through martial arts?
My goals are to complete the second part of the level II test; join the class and continue to grow. I also look forward to doing more cross training, particularly in Kali, Muay Thai, & Silat. Another goal is to become disciplined and learn grappling. My longer term goal is to train together at PAMA with my children.
In what ways has your training at PAMA permeated into other aspects of your life?
My training at PAMA has positively affected my life in many ways. As a direct result, I am in much better physical condition, more open minded, more honest with myself and others, and generally more at peace than before training here. This has had a residual positive influence on my family, spiritual life and my career although in a corporate sense, my ways are very different than the norm. How I have adapted to this, yet remained an individual is both balanced and positive.
Your children also train at PAMA. What effect has it had on them and your family?
Both of my children have also received numerous benefits from training at PAMA. The most obvious one is their awareness to their environment at all times. Both of them are honor students and exemplify a high level of respect to others. My daughter nicely combined martial arts with dance, music, poetry and gardening. My son has used the mental and physical conditioning aspects to his advantage in basketball and soccer, both at which he perform at high levels. We built an outdoor dojo at home where we all train, and maintain the upkeep.
Any closing remarks?
PAMA has added a wonderful dimension to my life through challenge, knowledge, enjoyment, pain, fun, and the various spiritual components it offers. I am both proud and honored to be part of this martial arts family and look forward to many more enlightening years here. Thank You!
Sifu Recommends a Book
- Living the Martial Way: A Manual for the Way a Modern Warrior Should Think -
Living the Martial Way is a concise manual for training in warriorship. Unique amoung martial arts books, it provides a systematic, step-by-step approach to applying the warrior mind-set to your martial training and daily life. It combines a knowledge of fighting with an exploration of the culture of the warrior-The Martial Way. Individual chapters include "The Warrior Mindset," "The Warrior's Way of Strategy," and "Honor in Action." Morgan carefully guides the reader from The Way of Training, through The Way of Honor, to The Way of Living, constantly finding applications both inside and outside the martial arts.
... In Living the Martial Way he teaches the reader not only how to fight, but also when to fight, and why.
- Kids Gold Sash Test -
On Feb. 18, Aubrey Mulford tested for her Gold Sash in Jun Fan Gung Fu. Her kickboxing form was very good. Most notably, her execution of the Sil Lim Tao form (the first form learned in Wing Chun Gung Fu) was excellent. Congratulations to Aubrey on her newly awarded Gold Sash!
- England Seminar -
On the last weekend in February Sifu Rick Tucci made yet another cross-continental voyage. This time he traveled to Chelmsford, Essex, England for a second annual two-day seminar hosted by Laurence Sandum and Paul Finn. Laurence and Paul are both apprentice instructors under Guru Dan Inosanto, and under Ralf Jones, a full instructor in England under Dan Inosanto. The seminar was very well attended by participants from all over the UK, Scotland, as well as PAMA friends David and Vince from Brussels and PAMA student Mike Webb who is temporarily working in the UK. PAMA assistant instructor Mary Jo Colli was also on hand for the seminar.
The attendees enjoyed the intense and information packed seminar that covered a vast array of arts such as JKD, Kali, Silat and Muay Thai. As always, people were very grateful for the information but more appreciative of the knowledge that Sifu Rick shared with them about martial arts and present day influences. For information on future seminars in England contact Laurence Sandum at TheFitnessAcademy@ChurchRoadBoreham.fsnet.co.uk.
- Boxe Francaise Savate Seminar -
Founded in the 1800's, modern B.F. Savate is a unique French kickboxing art involving an array of multi-level kicks and standard Western boxing melded together with extreme precision and beautiful grace. It is not uncommon to see B.F. Savate practitioners throw three or more kicks in rapid succession, all of which strike with a hard tipped shoe (another difference from other kickboxing systems). On February 11, Professor Salem Assli, Silver Glove 2nd Degree and President of the California Association of B.F. Savate, was at PAMA to conduct Glove testing (the rankings system in Savate). The tests are comprised of a technical section and assault (sparring) section. From lowest to highest, the glove order is: blue, green, red, white, yellow, and silver.
Blue Glove: Nick Harrison, Angel Soto
Red Glove: Keith Byrd, Ari Cohn, Dave Ramsey, Jim Robinson, Max Wang
White Glove: Neil Campeas, Lisa Melendez
This February's Savate seminar was met with a surprise... loads of snow! The "Nor-Easter" did not stop (just delayed for a few hours) the seminar and the great instruction. After digging out all of the participants were more then happy to get out of the house. The day started off with viewing some amazing professional Savate fights. After being inspired the group was equally awed by the skill and finesse that Professor Salem Assli displayed in his teaching and instruction of Savate Boxe Francaise. His teaching method and instruction assured that students of all levels learned and improved.
The mid afternoon break was met with a Happy Birthday cake for Neil, all natural from Whole Foods of course! The group ended the day by running into the snow for a cool down! Thank you for all the attendees who came out in this weather and of course thank you Professor Salem for another great seminar.
- Kickboxing 101 at Princeton University -
For the third year in a row the students of Princeton University have been given the opportunity to participate in a semester-long kickboxing class taught by instructors of Princeton Academy. Neil Acevedo and Mary Jo Colli are teaching this class which meets twice a week for the entire semester. There has been quite a showing this year and the students are enjoying their training which consists of a blend of boxing and various kickboxing arts.
- Learn a Technique from Sifu Rick -
Sifu Rick demonstrates two counters to espada y daga locking.
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Video/Pictures: Mary Jo Colli, Mike Lee
Stories: Neil Acevedo, Mary Jo Colli, Mike Lee, Ray Ng