About Sifu Ken
I usually introduce myself as a “lifelong martial arts slacker”. I’ve never done martial arts for a living, nor had a desire to, but it is nonetheless an integral part of my life, practicing more or less most of it. I don’t claim to be a master, but use the term “sifu” in it’s other connotation, that of teacher, which I am and have always been.
My interest in martial arts started in high school through books on Aikido and Ninjitsu, but my journey as a martial artist started in college when I was 19. I met an avid practitioner, a classmate from Long Island, who took me on as one of his first two students, the other being his roommate Steve. It was also during this time I was first exposed specifically to Tai Chi, through a course offered by the local Taoist Tai Chi Society.
This early exposure to Tai Chi and my own research in Chi Kung heavily influenced my martial arts journey from the start. But it was only at the request of Scott Hiemenz of 8 Tigers (for whom I had given presentations on internal martial arts and chi theory) that I started teaching specifically Tai Chi, representing their system in community educations programs for school districts throughout Erie County. Over several years I had taught over 500 students rudimentary skills in Tai Chi, Chi Kung, and self-defense.
For most of the last decade, I have been teaching at the VA Recovery Center twice a week, arranged by Red Dragon, where for over a year I studied and practiced the Chengfu lineage of Yang Style Tai Chi several times a week. That part of my journey and comparison to other styles I’ve worked with will be found here, previously published on Martial Talk.
I also have done many seminars and presentations at fairs and retreats, including a health exhibit for CNN and a fitness program for DuPont. Every year for many years now, I look forward to offering classes at the Girl Scout leaders’ conference at Seven Hills.
My next steps are to make much of my experience and knowledge available here, along with some videos, and be open to more opportunities to teach if they present themselves.
Note: I may write about my early journey into martial arts in more detail, but for now I simply link to a PDF of a former site I maintained, setting the record straight on the credentials and history of my former teacher and school, namely David Moerler & Song Mountain Monastery. I have not been associated with them since I discovered the truth back in 1996, but am avialable to anyone who may have questions or information about their acitivites and wish to discuss it.