The Family Classes are designed to be a fun yet give both children and adults a good foundation in the martial arts and whilst improving focus.
In the family class we learn a wide range of martial arts techniques (Striking , Kicking, Locking, Rolling, breakfalling). We believe in learning through interactive and fun games as an engaged mind learns effortlessly. The early syllabus is based on Ba Bu Da (8 Step Hit) which is a series of 8 short combinations (as developed by famous master Hung I Hsiang) which develop both good self defence and promotes good posture.
“The Kwoon (school) boasts plenty of equipment with mats, focus mits, pads, jousting poles, along with a wide range of traditional training equipment. Our lessons are expertly designed to engage students of all ages. We endeavour to give students the time to explore their martial arts through independent learning and give them the opportunity to ask questions throughout the lesson.!”
Our young students
We are very proud of our young students, who will one day pass on these rare and wonderful arts. Parents frequently come along to see how well their children are doing in classes, gradings and lots of other events:
Our yearly tournament gives students the chance to compete in a friendly and relaxed atmosphere, there are lots of categories and medals to be won…
Family and friends are invited to the Chinese New Year party where they will see students perform various demonstrations including the traditional lion dance…
In the last year children celebrated completing another years training at Tao Jia with a trip to Lazer Quest – parents are invited too!
The syllabus of Tao Jia
At Tao Jia Martial Arts our foundational syllabus introduces basic conditioning (flexibility, strength and stamina), footwork strategies and general skills that all Kung Fu styles utilise – that is the basics of Ti (kicking), Da (punching), Shuai (throwing), Na (controlling/locking). These components are taught in a systematic way so the student understands clearly what they are doing and why they are doing it rather then merely learning for the sake of tradition or based on faith in the instructor.
Appropriate to the students development and personal confidence various pressure drills are used– all of our grandteachers advocated sparring so this is nothing new. For those who have an interest San Da (Chinese Kickboxing) and Shuai Jiao (Chinese Wrestling) inter club competitions are also availible as a means of self development.
From early on our adult students also begin to learn developmental martial skills. Unfortunately many schools do not teach these skills until someone has practiced for decades (Iron body, Iron Hand, Internal Strengthening etc) if indeed the instructor has ever had a chance to learn them him/herself. Yet traditionally these are the bread and butter of kung fu – without these foundational skills Chinese Martial Arts (and indeed karate) are little more then a dance routine. For example without hand conditioning one cannot hit with power ungloved and expect to not damage the hand.
We also focus on developing a complete combat model in order to minimise the time it takes to mentally process essential information and respond correctly – without this sort of training one can spend years learning techniques which ultimately only slow down the rate of response in a combat situation.
Si Ji Hao (Tibetan Lions Roar)!
The major focus of the curriculum is Si Ji Hao (Tibetan Lions Roar!) as this style is very complete in its ability to both create a skilled fighter and in its yogic/tantric aspects. Its basic methods and seeds are extended and can embrace other martial practices without becoming dilluted. Other styles of Kung Fu are also taught in the syllabus starting with Jian Shou (Splashing Hands) to develop practical fighting skills in a short space of time.
The curriculum also includes advanced Taoist inner development techniques, weapons and traditional Chinese medicine (Tui Na, An Mo, Moxibustion etc) to create a complete martial artist. Once the student has some experience of the arts we teach they may find one which suits them (each one is very complete) and choose to specialise in it.
A quick overview of the arts available to a committed student
I met Sifu Chris Lomas whilst studying acupuncture and began training under his guidance in February 2003. I speak for all his students when I say we are very lucky to have a teacher who embodies their skill to such a high level in so many fields of kung fu and who teaches so patiently and kindly. Training with Sifu Lomas gives one a renewed appreciation of martial arts and a deep sense of the applications in developing combat skill and in health promotion. In my work as an osteopath and acupuncturist I return again and again to Sifu Lomas’s teachings to both promote my health as a practitioner and to help people re-engage with theirs. I wholeheartedly recommend Sifu Lomas to anyone who wants to engage in learning martial arts; in fact I urge you to go to the school and put your questions to the test with him, you will not find the answers wanting.Cahir Doherty