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LINEAGE


Sifu Dennis Moreland was trained through the Ip Man lineage of wing chun martial arts. 

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LINEAGE


Sifu Dennis Moreland was trained through the Ip Man lineage of wing chun martial arts. 

 
 
 

HISTORY

The founder of the Wing Chun Kung Fu System, Miss Yim Wing Chun, was a native of Canton [Kwangtung Province] in China. She was an intelligent and athletic young girl, upstanding and forthright. Her mother died soon after her betrothal to Leung Bok Chau, a salt merchant of Fukien. Her father, Yim Yee, was wrongfully accused of a crime and, rather than risk jail, they slipped away and finally settled down at the foot of Tai Leung Mountain near the border between Yunan and Szechuan provinces. There they earned a living by running a shop that sold bean curd. 

During the reign of Emperor K'anghsi of the Ching Dynasty (1662-1722) Kung Fu became very strong in the Siu Lam [Shaolin] Monastery of Mt. Sung, in Honan Province. This aroused the ear of the Manchu government [a non-Chinese people from Manchuria in the North, who ruled China at that time], which sent troops to attack the Monastery. Although they were unsuccessful, a man named Chan Man Wai, a recently appointed civil servant seeking favor with the government, suggested a plan. 

He plotted with Siu Lam monk Ma Ning Yee and others who were persuaded to betray their companions by setting fire to the monastery  while soldiers attacked it from the outside. Siu Lam was burned down, and the monks and disciples scattered. Buddhist Abbess Ng Mui, Abbot Chi Shin, Abbot Pak Mei, Master Fung To Tak and Master Miu Hin escaped and went their separate ways. 
 
Ng Mui took refuge in the White Crane Temple on Mt. Tai Leung [also known as Mt. Chai Har]. It was there she met Yim Yee and his daughter Wing Chun from whom she often bought bean curd on her way home from the market. At fifteen, with her hair bound up in the custom of those days to show she was of an age to marry, Wing Chun's beauty attracted the attention of a local bully. He tried to force Wing Chun to marry him, and his continuous threats became a source of worry to her and her father. Ng Mui learned of this and took pity on Wing Chun. She agreed to teach Wing Chun fighting techniques so she could protect herself. Wing Chun followed Ng Mui into the mountains, and began to learn Kung Fu. She trained night and day, until she mastered the techniques. Then she challenged the bully to a fight and beat him. 

Ng Mui later traveled around the country, but before she left she told Wing Chun to strictly honor the Kung Fu traditions, to develop her Kung Fu after her marriage, and to help the people working to overthrow the Manchu government and restore the Ming Dynasty. 

After her marriage Wing Chun taught Kung Fu to her husband Leung Bok Chau. He in turn passed these techniques on to Leung Lan Kwai. Leung Lan Kwai then passed them on to Wong Wah Bo. Wong Wah Bo was a member of an opera troupe on board a junk, known to Chinese as the Red Junk. Wong worked on the Red Junk with Leung Yee Tei. It so happened that Abbot Chi Shin, who fled from Siu Lam, had disguised himself as a cook and was then working on the Red  Junk. Chi Shin taught the Six-and-a-half-point Long Pole techniques to Leung Yee Tei. Wong Wah Bo was close to Leung Yee Tei, and they shared what they knew about Kung Fu. Together they shared and improved their techniques, and thus the Six-and-a-half-point Long Pole was incorporated into Wing Chun Kung Fu. Leung Yee Tei passed his Kung Fu on to Leung Jan, a well known herbal Doctor in Fat Shan. Leung Jan grasped the innermost secrets of Wing Chun, attaining the highest level of proficiency. Many Kung Fu masters came to challenge him, but all were defeated. Leung Jan became very famous. Later he passed his Kung Fu on to Chan Wah Shan, who took me and my elder Kung Fu brothers, such as Ng Siu Lo, Ng Chung So, Chan Yu Min and Lui Yu Jai, as his students many decades ago. 

It can thus be said that the Wing Chun System was passed on to us in a direct line of succession from its origin. I write this history of the Wing Chun System in respectful memory of my forerunners. I am eternally grateful to them for passing to me the skills I now possess. A man should always think of the source of the water as he drinks it; it is this shared feeling that keeps our Kung Fu brothers together. 

Is this not the way to promote Kung Fu, and to project the image of our country? 

-Ip Man

 
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IP MAN


The father of modern Wing Chun is acknowledged to be the late Grandmaster Ip Man.

IP MAN


The father of modern Wing Chun is acknowledged to be the late Grandmaster Ip Man.

 

IP MAN

葉問

The father of modern Wing Chun is acknowledged to be the late Grandmaster Ip Man, who lived from 1893 until 1972. Ip Man was born and lived in Foshan China where he started his Wing Chun training at the age of six under his Sifu, Chan Wah Shun, who was taught by the legendary Leung Jan. Ip Man studied Wing Chun for six years until Chan Wah Shun passed away in 1905. Before Chan Wah Shan died he asked Ng Chung Sao to help Ip Man complete the Wing Chun System. In 1909 while studying at St. Stephen Collage in Hong Kong, Ip Man, through classmates, came to know Leung Bik, the second son of the legendary Leung Jan. Ip Man studied with Leung Bik for about four years.

Many years passed, by which time Grandmaster Ip Man had returned to Foshan where he married Cheung Wing Sing and had four children, sons Ip Chun, Ip Ching and daughters Ar Sum and Ar Wun. 

In 1949 Grandmaster Ip Man left China for Hong Kong and it was around May 1950 that Grandmaster Ip Man first started to teach Wing Chun. The first class opened with only eight people, but it was not long before more schools whee opened and the name of Wing Chun spread to the outside. It was between 1955-1957 that one of Grandmaster Ip Man's more famous students Lee Siu Lung (Bruce Lee), started to learn Wing Chun. 

In 1962, Grandmaster Ip Man's two sons, Ip Chun and Ip Ching, came to Hong Kong from Foshan. It was not long after their return they started to resume their Wing Chun training under the guidance of their father. Grandmaster Ip Man moved to Tong Choi Street around 1964, where he mainly taught private tuition. Grandmaster Ip Man passed away at his home in 1972; he was 79 years old. 

 
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IP CHING


Grandmaster Ip Ching is the youngest son of the late Grandmaster Ip Man.

IP CHING


Grandmaster Ip Ching is the youngest son of the late Grandmaster Ip Man.

 

IP CHING 

葉學正

Grandmaster Ip Ching is the youngest son of the late Grandmaster Ip Man and was born in Foshan, China in 1936. Many martial art masters lived in Foshan whilst Sifu Ip Ching was growing up, but he didn't start his Wing Chun training until about the age of 11 or 12 under the close guidance of his father.

When Sifu Ip Man left China for Hong Kong in 1949 he took his eldest daughter with him, sadly leaving behind his other son and daughters with their mother in China. Although practice of any traditional Chinese Kung Fu was banned during the Cultural Revolution, Sifu Ip Ching was determined to keep up his training during this father's absence. He would stay up late at night to practice his forms right up until the day he left China for Hong Kong in 1962. When arriving in Hong Kong, Sifu Ip Ching was reunited with his father and resumed his Wing Chun training. It was tradition that family skill or trade be passed down from generation to generation, from father to son.

Sifu Ip Ching lived with his father, where students would come to have private lessons. Watching his father teach gave Sifu Ip Ching enormous insight and understanding of Wing Chun and his father's teaching methods. From 1964 Sifu Ip Ching started to help his father teach a lot of his later students. 


Days before Grandmaster Ip Man died he asked students Wong Hon Lam and his two sons, Sifu's Ip Ching and Ip Chun, to film him demonstrate Sil Lim Tau, Chum Kiu and the Wooden Dummy techniques. Knowing he had not long to live he was worried that some people might claim they were tough secret techniques or modify the forms. At the time Grandmaster Ip Man wanted to film the whole system, but seeing he was in great pain they suggested he finished it at a later date, but sadly he died. The film was then entrusted to his two sons. After his father's death the house was passed on to Sifu Ip Ching, who still lives there today. At this time Sifu Ip Ching was only teaching Wing Chun part time due to his successful manufacturing company he ran.

In 1994 Grandmaster Ip Ching decided it was time to retire and started to teach Wing Chun full time at the Ving Tsun Athletic Association and privately at his home.Since his retirement, Grandmaster Ip Ching has been invited all around the world to teach his Wing Chun and to talk about his late father's teachings. Practitioners of Wing Chun from across the globe come to his classes at the Association in Hong Kong to train with him and his students.

 
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CHRIS DAMIANO


Sifu Chris Damiano has been involved in Martial Arts and Combat for the last 27 years, including Wrestling, American Karate, Hapkido, Judo, Boxing Filipino Martial Arts, and JKD. He now trains at Centerline Martial Arts in Destin, Florida. 

CHRIS DAMIANO


Sifu Chris Damiano has been involved in Martial Arts and Combat for the last 27 years, including Wrestling, American Karate, Hapkido, Judo, Boxing Filipino Martial Arts, and JKD. He now trains at Centerline Martial Arts in Destin, Florida. 

 

CHRIS DAMIANO

CENTERLINE MARTIAL ARTS ACADEMY

Sifu Chris Damiano has been involved in Martial Arts and Combat for the last 27 years, including Wrestling, American Karate, Hapkido, Judo, Boxing Filipino Martial Arts, and JKD. Born and raised in Chicago, he worked and managed the bar scene for 14 years. He has witnessed first hand just about everything that can happen in a real world situation and knows what works and doesn’t work in a fight.  Sifu Chris Damiano began his Wing Chun training in 1994. Upon watching the demonstration and class, he saw the directness, simplicity, practicality, and explosiveness that answered today’s combative problems. Sifu Damiano trained rigorously and over a few years became one of the top students.
 
Sifu Chris Damiano has met and trained with some of the arts' greatest practitioners from around the world. He still regularly goes to the UK, Hong Kong, and China to train with his Kung Fu Brothers and attends seminars and events around the world.

Sifu Chris Damiano started training under the youngest son of Ip Man in Chicago, Grandmaster Ip Ching. He was blown away by the power and speed of a man near the age of 70. From there his training took a very progressive turn. He trained those methods diligently and set out for a "deeper" understanding of the art.  Later in that same year Sifu Damiano moved to Destin, Florida and taught privately out of his home.  

In 2002 he was invited as a U.S. representative for the opening of the Ip Man Tong in Foshan, China. There he participated in demonstrations from around the world and different Wing Chun Styles from China, which was unheard of at the time in the U.S. During that time he also did more training with his Sifu Grandmaster Ip Ching furthering his knowledge and skills of the art. 

Sifu Damiano has continued to go to Hong Kong and China year after year to train. He and three of his Kung Fu brothers went to Hong Kong and privately trained with Grandmaster Ip Ching, going through the entire system on how it is to be taught in great detail. At that landmark trip they were given the responsibility to pass on those methods correctly as per Grandmaster Ip Ching.  Upon returning to Destin, Florida he decided to do just that, and started teaching publicly and openly and has become one the most sought out instructors in the Gulf Coast. With students throughout the Southeast, St Louis, Texas, Minnesota, and as far as Okinawa.

In 2010 Sifu Damiano returned to Hong Kong and was examined and archived on his ablity to teach the system by his Sifu. Upon this he became one of the first westerners to obtain this achievement in the Ving Tsun Ip Ching Atheltic Association. Currently Sifu Chris Damiano was selected to be #2 trainer and inside striking coach for Boxing's Pro Heavy Weight Moses Droz by Droz and head trainer James "Golden Fist" Sisco. 

Sifu Chris Damiano remains well respected in the martial arts world.  Sifu Damiano teaches with an open heart and open mind and believes that it’s not how long you’ve done Kung Fu, but how often you practice.

 
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DENNIS MORELAND


Dennis Moreland bio. Sifu Dennis Moreland is committed to preserving this ancient Chinese art passed down by Chris Damiano under the Grandmaster Ip Man lineage. 

DENNIS MORELAND


Dennis Moreland bio. Sifu Dennis Moreland is committed to preserving this ancient Chinese art passed down by Chris Damiano under the Grandmaster Ip Man lineage. 

 

DENNIS MORELAND

WEST COUNTY WING CHUN

Dennis started martial arts in 1982 at the age of eight. He currently holds a 3rd degree Black Belt in Chinese Kenpo under Tim (T.O.) Toeniskoetter at the Martial Arts Center in St. Louis, Missouri. During his time with T.O., Dennis taught group and private lessons including the instruction of the military and the St. Louis Police Department.
 
Dennis has also achieved a 3rd Degree Black Belt in Traditional Judo under a well known private instructor in St. Louis, William Howard . With the knowledge obtained, Dennis taught children's, adult, and private Judo lessons at Centerline Martial Arts in Destin, Florida to broaden the scope of the Wing Chun-based school. It was at Centerline Martial Arts that Dennis found what he was looking for, Ip Ching Wing Chun. However, prior to teaching Wing Chun full time, Dennis had extensive exposure to many styles.
  
Dennis trained extensively in the Defensor Method of Kali/Escrima, Pekiti-Tirsia, American Kenpo, Boxing,  Joe Lewis-free-fighting system and Akido. He has had the honor of participating in seminars and training with some world's most notable martial artist; such as Dan Inosanto, Nate Defensor,  Joe Lewis, and  Jeff Speakman.

What cannot be understated are the qualities of his youth that drove him to exercise practical knowlegde with tactile precision he learned in a Kwoon. There is a huge difference between being taught - or achieving belts and point fighting -  and actually exercising technique in REAL world scenarios, where adrenaline rushes and you default to what you know best. Dennis is a fighter...in the Dojo, Kwoon, or on the street. "On the street" is actually Dennis's forte, when all rules are scraped, training is combined, and no holds are barred. 
 
At the beginning of 2008, Dennis found his home training under Chris Damiano in Destin, Florida. Sifu Damiano, a direct student of Ip Ching, introduced Dennis to authentic Wing Chun. Dennis champions this style today in his own school, West County Wing Chun.  Dennis remains a faithful student of Chris Damiano and continues to train and learn privately. 

In March 2011, Dennis opened West County Wing Chun in Valley Park, which has been growing rapidly ever since.  He has a large Wing Chun following through group and private lessons and continues to grow his school day to day. His passion for the art shows in the strong Kung Fu family he is building at the school today. The focus on friendship, family, adult learning, and love of the art is evident in every class.