A Happy New Year to all. As you will probably know by now this year marks the twentieth anniversary of the establishment of the Zhong Ding Association. What started as a class of twelve people in a small school hall in West London now has members throughout the United Kingdom, in Ireland, France, Germany, Spain, the US, the Philippines and Malaysia. Initially focusing on taijiquan and the Jing Wu curriculum, the Association now has members practicing and teaching not only taijiquan, baguazhang, xingyiquan, the Jing Wu forms, but also Master Liang He Qing’s Liangshi Martial Arts curriculum, Shaolin Wuzuquan, a number of different styles of Malay Silat and Filipino Eskrima.

Although like all families we have had our ups and downs, now we stand in the twenty first century bringing the martial arts to ever wider audiences. Last year saw the passing of Master Liang He Qing, a sad event, but nevertheless one that has inspired both myself and Fong to rededicate ourselves to preserving and propagating his ideals as well as those of all our Masters and Mentors. As one of my teachers said to me while we were discussing Master Liang’s influence on both myself and Fong and Zhong Ding as a whole, “Your have lost your father, now get on with it!” While these words might sound abrupt if not callous they were just what I needed to hear and served and serve as a source of inspiration.

Master Liang’s Memorial event in December 2007 was also a source of inspiration and served as a showcase of not only the skills of Zhong Ding members but also of that splendid family spirit which truly makes this Association special.

In March I shall once again be visiting the UK and hope to see many of you at the National grading which is being held in Devon on Sunday March 2nd. I hope too that many of you will take advantage of the wonderful opportunities available in this Anniversary year. In May we will be in China celebrating the 100th Aniversary of Master Gao Ziying’s birth and then in September we will be celebrating here in Penang with a collection of great Masters of a wide range of arts.

My deepest hope for this year is that no matter which art individual members of the Zhong Ding family practice they will enter deeper into their study of our mother art, Zhengzi Taijiquan. It has been my experience that no matter which area of the martial arts I explore it is my understanding of and continued research into Zheng Man Qing’s art that enables me to get a handle on other arts. I am particularly grateful to have had the opportunity to study this art in Malaysia where generations of Chinese masters have actually fought to keep the art a real and living entity with not only perfect form but also effective and efficient function.

Next month I shall be back with more in-depth articles but for now train hard and enjoy your training!

Nigel

 

IMPORTANT NOTICE

If you wish to attend either the May visit to Beijing or the September Penang Extravaganza please contact me or let your instructor know asap so that we can ensure you have a place.
Thank you.

Copyright N Sutton 2008

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