I was born in a small town from Taiwan on November 1987. My first experience of Marital Arts was from an after-school program. I didn’t know martial art was, nor what to expect from it. I was mainly there because my parents thought I was too wild and needed some discipline. I was around 7 years old when I started my training in traditional Chinese Kung-Fu. In the old days, the teachers were allowed to beat you up with sticks. I remember getting beat up due to poor performances or bad behaviours in classes; it usually leaves bruises on my body for couple of days, sometimes weeks. At first, I was doing because I had to, I didn’t have a choice. But who knew it started to plan a seed inside of me, it became my passion, a part of my life.
After a few years of training, I began my second martial art training path in Aikido when my family moved to a different town in Taiwan. That was my first time experiencing Japanese martial arts. But what drowns me more was the uniform. I remember watching the class and I could not take my eyes off the uniforms that everyone was wearing! The uniform itself looks so clean and so elegant. I would tie up my uniform with my belt and carry it over my back while I bike to my dojo every night.
My family decided to move to United States when I was 13 years old. I was disappointed to leave because I had just gotten my green belt in Aikido. But I know I won’t stop my training and I will continue my martial art journey in the United States. So I decided to join the Tae Kwon Do Club in High School.
Just a few years after, I found a martial arts school nearby by my house. I would pass by it every morning on my way to school. I’ve decided to pay it a visit one night. I remember walking down the stairs and entering the door. The school was very clean and smelled really nice. I was offered to do a trial class and was blown away by the quality of instructions. It was indeed what I was looking for this whole entire time, it doesn’t not emphasise on a specific system, rather, the school offers multiple martial arts system to better educate the students. Without a second thought, I’ve decided to become a part of the Francis Fong Martial Arts Academy.
Over the years of training at the Francis Fong Martial Arts Academy, I’ve learned so much from Sifu Francis Fong. Wing Chun was my first primary art. But I also trained in other systems such as Jun Fan Gung Fu, Kali, Gracie Jit-Jitsu, Combat Submission Wrestling, Muay Thai, Silat and Savate. I don’t think there is such a system that is superior better than others, but the person who study the system must better educate themselves and become well-rounded in every other aspect. As a martial artist, my goal is to train harder and be better than where I was yesterday. I don’t compare myself to other martial artists, instead, I set them as my role models to motivate me, to help me training harder. I constantly challenge myself to face my fears; the fear of getting down on the ground, the fear of getting punch in the face, the fear that I won’t be able to defend myself against a better opponent. I know that’s my way to push myself and sharpen my skills.
Throughout my years of training, I have achieved my instructorships under the world-renowned instructors such as Guro Dan Inosanto, Sifu Francis Fong, Ajarn Chai Sirisute, and Sensei Erik Paulson. But it doesn’t make me stop. I continue traveling to my teachers yearly to train with them. It allows to see other talented martial artist and knowing that there are always better people out there. It makes me humble, makes me want to be better. A true martial artist never stop training, we must continue our training and keep researching to embrace our ability. Every accomplishment in my martial arts journey is a bless. I am thankful to all of my teachers for passing down their knowledge and wisdom. I know one day I will do the same. I am also thankful to all of the students who I have trained. They’ve helped me grown as a better teacher. My training has taken me up to this point, but I am only getting started. We must continue to mater ourselves and striving to be stronger, faster and wiser. A black belt is not the end of the journey, it is only the beginning!