May 2007 Newsletter
Student of the Month
- Liam Kiernan -
When did you first start training at PAMA?
I was introduced to Jeet Kune Do and PAMA about five years ago, which is more than a third of my life (and the part I remember best).
What made you first interested in Martial Arts?
My father had been doing karate at a different school, which I had been interested in doing, but when he switched to PAMA, my brother started doing classes with him. Since both seemed to enjoy doing it so much and I had always wanted to do something like martial arts, I eventually asked if I could sign up as well.
What are some of the key things that Martial Arts has taught you?
Martial arts is much more than a sport to me. It has become a lifestyle, and has affected my personal philosophies and behaviors. You need a certain level of respect and discipline (both mentally and physically) which I didn't have before coming to PAMA. Attaining that level of discipline has especially helped me with my schoolwork, which most people would now compliment.
What are your favorite arts and why?
Overall, I would say that my favorite art would be kickboxing because of its applicability. However, I feel that having a strong foundation in many arts is a good idea because not every situation will fall into your area of expertise.
You just started in the Junior Assistants program. What are the benefits that you see this will provide you and what benefits can you provide to the other students?
With my level of knowledge I feel I can help the people who need it, especially the beginning students, so that the more experienced instructors can spend more of their time devoted to the more advanced students. Hopefully this will help me as well by forcing me to think about each and every technique and reflect on my own training. Returning to the basics seems like a good idea for me right now.
Last year you transitioned to the Adult's Program. How do you think that the Children's program prepared you and how do you feel about your training now?
Besides learning only the crude movements of the techniques, the instructors made sure that I learned the finesse behind each movement and helped me understand the purpose. Being in the Children's program allowed me much more personal attention from the instructors, which greatly helped me with my training in early childhood.
Anything else additional you would like to add?
Attending classes at PAMA has been a life changing experience for me and I hope to even further integrate it into my life. I also plan to start taking different classes in addition to the ones I am currently in. Finally, my friends who also take martial arts (either PAMA or a different school) and I are planning to start training together more in order to obtain the next level in our arts.
Visiting Student Profile
- David Bertrand -
What is your background in the Martial Arts and where do you train now?
I started martial arts in 1994 at the age of 15. I went to a Kung Fu Wing Tsun school in my town in Belgium, near Brussels. Bruce Lee movies and friends motivated my choice. After 3 years the school closed and I continued to train in Savate - french kickboxing. During this period I also practiced a little bit of boxing, kickboxing and yoseikan budo. Because I had no school anymore I decided in 2001 to give kung fu courses to not lose all I had learned. I remember at this time I began reading Bruce Lee's books and was more and more fascinated by him for a lot of reasons. At the same time, I was lucky to start Jeet Kune Do at Chris Cornaz's GAMA (Switzerland) where I went sometimes. Then I made seminars in Europe with several teachers to learn much and to have materials to practice in Belgium: Rick Tucci, Salem Assli, and even Dan Inosanto, Jesse Glover and Tim Tacket. So my kung fu classes became progressively Jun Fan JKD classes. To me, teaching always have meant learning and training at the same time. In 2005, I obtained my first certificate in 11 years training and now Iím an apprentice instructor in Jun Fan JKD under Chris Cornaz, at least on the paper... In 2005 I also continued to train in Wing Chun and also in Chinese Kickboxing (sanda or sanshou) with the best teacher and fighter in Belgium, because I wanted to experiment in competition, which I did and obtained the Belgian champion title. Now I teach Jun Fan Gung Fu and Chinese boxing in my school and of course I continue to train, which is the most important because like Sifu Dan says, we are eternal students.
When were you first exposed to Sifu Rick Tucci and the Princeton Academy of Martial Arts?
It was in Geneva, April 2004. Sifu Rick was invited by GAMA for a seminar and my teacher Chris strongly recommended me to come.
What do you do and what are your interests outside of the Martial Arts?
I have a Masters in Psychology and a degree in teaching. For 3 years I taught religion in high school and I am studying theology at the same time. I thus have a passion for theses different subjects, but also for animals and nature since I am young. In general, I like to learn from every source I can: people, books, magazines, television, ...
What made you decide to travel to Princeton and how long did you train at PAMA?
I decided to travel to PAMA because I wanted to experiment with one week of full time training. But also because I knew that PAMA is one of the best martial arts schools in the USA, specially for Jun Fan Gung Fu. I also knew that Sifu Rick was one of the best instructors under Dan Inosanto. Actually he invited me to come when I asked him at his last seminar in Brussels.
Was training at PAMA what you expected? What were your favorite parts?
Yes, I was expecting that, but I was surprised by the kindness and the discipline of the people I met. I have learnt a lot in multiples ways: for me, for my training, for my students. My favorite parts was definitely Jun Fan classes. But I enjoyed Muay Thai too because it is useful for my Chinese Kickboxing training and even close to it in several aspects. I also liked grappling because it's new for me and finally I see that Kali and Silat techniques comes progressively so I'm happy too.
As an instructor in the Martial Arts, what lessons will you take back to your students?
Maybe more discipline and more involvement in the training. To make them more conscious of the benefits of serious training for themselves. To show more for some of them that martial arts can not be reduced to the sport of the self defense dimension. Finally to show them more how Bruce Lee's method and concepts were so rich and original.
Any other comments?
I would really like to thank Sifu Rick, Guro Amy, the instructors, the staff and the students for the week I had. You have given to me a great impression of martial arts and of American people. Like you say in America: God bless you all!
- Communiversity 2007 -
This years Communiversity festivities were held on April 21st in Princeton directly in front of the Princeton Library. Huge crowds gathered to watch as our PAMA kids led off the festivities with the Sil Lum Tao and basic kicks and punches led by Aubrey Mulford and Albert Su. We then flew in to high gear as both the 6-8 year old group and the 9-13 years olds showed off their Jun Fan kickboxing skills. The crowd was then was further wowed by the 9-13 year old Kali stick work.
Mike Lee and Mary Jo Colli led the adult intro which focused on a barrage of martial arts represented at PAMA including Jun Fan, Kali, and Muay Thai. The adults blew the crowd away with their Jun Fan skills followed by the intense Jun Fan juniors. Kali was then represented by all in double stick, single stick, and stick and dagger. To finish off the festivities with a bang we had a Mike & Mike demonstration of Action Flex Stick sparring with safety gear. Lee and Wolfort went to town as the crowd cheered them on.
Thank you to all the PAMA student who participated and did a fantastic job representing our school. Also much thanks to our seasoned MC, B Diddy (Bernie Dudley).
- Garaguso Karate Welcomes Sifu Rick -
On April 21, Sifu Rick taught a Filipino Martial Arts seminar hosted by Garaguso Karate, located in Williamstown, NJ. Garaguso Karate, specializing in Soo Bahk Do Moo and Brazilian Jujitsu, wanted to add a new dimension to their training, and invited Sifu Rick down to teach over 40 participants of all ages, backgrounds, and experience, to cover the various aspects of weaponry found in the Filipino Martial Arts.
Participants covered basic theory, angles, and footwork, and progressed to more complicated siniwalli drills, single stick drills, disarms against the stick and knife, and kali empty hands. The five hour seminar was very comprehensive and by the end, everyone was starting to look familar and comfortable with the weapons. Thanks to Lee Stewart and Mr. Garaguso for having us.
- Introducing the new Junior Assistants Program -
PAMA would like to introduce the first ever Junior Assistants program. The members of the program include Tony Arias, Liam Kiernan, Jeff Mulford, and Matt Panfilli. All are recent graduates within the past year into the PAMA adult's program and were Black Belts in the children's program of which they were all members for several years.
These dedicated students will now have the honor of assisting in the children's classes as a way to bring their own training and understanding to the next level. Congratulations and all the best to these young leaders!
- Kids Testing: 9-13 Year Old -
Congratulations to Albert Su, Will Minor, Uliyana Volodin, and Sunil Ramakrisnan for receiving their Green Sashes (3rd Level) in the 8-13 year old kid's program. Each student was tested for their knowledge in Jun Fan Gung Fu, kickboxing, form, and trapping and they all did a wonderful job.
Sifu Recommends a Book
- Spiritual Dimensions of the Martial Arts -
Spiritual Dimensions of the Martial Arts is a study of the meditative and religious elements that form the core of the great martial arts traditions. Unsurpassed in scope and detail, the book covers the spiritual beliefs and the practices of the fighting arts of India, China, Korea, Japan, Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand, Brazil, and the United States. Subjects discussed include Bruce Lee's unique views on spirituality and meditation, rituals used to induce altered states of consciousness in Indonesian Pencak-Silat, the unusual relationship of Korea's Hwarang warriors to Mahayana Buddhism, the importance of Buddhist ritual in Muay Thai, the role of African mystic beliefs and Christianity in the practice of Capoeira, spiritual practices in the Filipino martial arts, the significance of Zen and esoteric Buddhism to the Samurai, the relationship of Indian martial arts to Yoga, the impact of Daoist concepts on the Chinese martial arts, and psychological development and martial arts training.
- Learn a Technique from Sifu Rick -
Sifu Rick demonstrates a woang pak biu jee combined with a jeet tek to counter the jab, followed by a trapping series and attack by combination.
Sifu disarms an angle #1 strike using the inside deflection to a snake.
- Learn a Technique from Guro Amy -
- Intermediate Jun Fan -
- PAMA is happy to announce its first ever Intermediate Jun Fan class on Monday nights. This class will take place on Monday, from 8:45pm - 9:30pm and begins May 21. Please see an instructor for more details.
- Sign up now for the Jun Fan 4 and 8 month tests in the Pro Shop now. The test is scheduled for June 9.
- P5P by Pure Encapsulations -
*Pyridoxal-5'-phosphate (P5P) is the active metabolite of pyridoxine and is the predominant form of plasma B6. P5P is required for proper absorption of B12 and magnesium, and for the production of gastric HCl. It is an important coenzyme in the metabolism of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins, and the elongation of essential fatty acids. It is required for the production of antibodies and red blood cells. P5P facilitates the release of glycogen (used in energy production) from the liver and muscles. In addition, P5P helps maintain the balance of sodium and potassium, which regulates body fluids and promotes the healthy functioning of the nervous and musculoskeletal systems.
Video/Pictures: Mary Jo Colli, Mike Lee, Amy Tucci
Stories: Mary Jo Colli, Mike Lee, Max Wang