Monthly Newsletter - August 2018

Dear Friends,

We have several events I’d like to get on your radar, including performances, competitions, and shows.  And as always, from seminars, to competitions, demo’s and other activities, you won’t want to miss out on the action at CMAA!

School Closings
Sash Test Recap
CMAA on Instagram
Kungfu Competition
CMAA Water Bottles!
Kungfu and Tai Chi Documentaries!
MoMA: How to See Kungfu Movies.
现代艺术博物馆: 如何欣赏功夫片
Qigong Seminar



Please note that Kungfu will be cancelled on Saturday, August 11th as Shifu will be attending the North East Open Martial Arts Tournament with competitors from CMAA.  Students are encouraged to attend as competitors or as spectators!  Please find more information about the competition and the benefits of attending below. 


"What can we say?  “Thank you” doesn’t begin to express our gratitude.  We greatly appreciate the thoughtfulness of our CMAA family who took the time and energy to organize a very special surprise party to welcome Kai to the world.  With gifts, kind words, hugs, well-wishes, and with positive energy and love in the air the CMAA family put on a wonderful party full of good food, good fun with the best of company.   

Martial arts is my life and I feel very fortunate to share my specialized knowledge with all of you.  However, I can say with complete conviction, that while imparting the technical skillsets of Chinese martial arts, you have all taught me how to be a better, kinder, more thoughtful person.  Thank you for continuing to show me the light."- Shifu         

“Thank you everyone for your kind words and support for Kai’s early arrival. We feel so lucky to have all of you as friends and family. Your thoughtfulness to offer covering Lucas’s absence; Your cards with all the love and hugs; Your flowers with all the excitement; Your food and gifts with love nutritions...We are so grateful and appreciative. Lucas and I have been feeling very appreciative with what we have in our life. Now we have Kai. And what makes it even better is the love from all of you. We can’t wait to introduce you all to Kai! – Zoey”

Follow CMAA on Instagram!

MOMA: "How to see Kungfu Movies"

It might not come as a surprise to you that I am a HUGE old school Kungfu movie fan! I started watching these movies when I was about 6 years old. It was a rediscover of them at at 13 (literally, opening an old box of VHS Kungfu movies tapes) that inspired me to practice martial arts again. About 10 years ago I then fell in love with the ‘WuXia’ genre of books and began reading them all in Chinese... Its hard to explain why I love them when asked, but like the kids on the Apple Jacks commercials say, "I just do".

Here’s a little piece from MOMA on appreciating Chinese martial arts films:


Congratulations to this crew!  Great job CMAA ninjas! So proud of your hard work and progress!


In the past seven years CMAA has awarded black belts to only five exceptional students.  This past sash test was particularly meaningful in that we have added four new black belts to the ranks!  Each of our black belts shares several significant qualities, like determination and perseverance.  Simply speaking, earning a black belt in Kungfu takes time, and there will be setbacks over the years. A black belt maintains a long term vision.  This long term vision, combined with dedication is what allows for success.  However, beyond certain shared qualities, our black belts are also all unique.  Their physical skillsets and personalities are all expressed through their Kungfu.  It was a great honor to award these four individuals their black belts from CMAA.  Congratulations Scott, Elaine, Renee, and Minyi!    


Im especially proud to honor long time training partner and CMAA student Scott Beiter.  For those of you who don’t know, Scott and I grew up training together under our instructor Jiang Jian Ye.  When I returned to open CMAA, I had developed an entirely new curriculum.  I told Scott, who at that time had already practiced well over 10 years that he could continue to train any of the Kungfu our instructor had taught him, or he could learn the new curriculum.  He did not hesitate to say, that he looked forward to starting over as a white belt and working his way up. And he has, with a lifetime in wrestling and martial arts, Scott brings a wealth of knowledge and professionalism to CMAA and regularly assists with running classes.  He has been a great asset to our school and I am proud to award Scott Beiter or as the kids call him “Uncle Spider” with his black belt.    

I tell people that the secret to success is two part.  Train hard, and help other people.  Most people understand the first part but few understand the importance of the second.  I’ll admit it took me a long time to understand it myself.  However, for other’s it can come more naturally.  Elaine is a special young woman.   For her, these two things seem to go hand in hand.  Elaine, has remained consistent and determined to earn her black belt and at the same time, she has always taken the initiative to help new students when they first come in.  If she picks up on any hesitation or uncertainty from a new prospective student, she’s quick to find something to compliment them on.  Then she will ask me if that student can be in her line for the practice.  Singlehandedly she will assist them in learning their new techniques, and maybe even change their entire perspective on trying something new in the future. I can’t commend her enough.  I am sure it will be these two qualities that will help Eliane find continued success wherever she chooses to apply it.  

Renee has always been a favorite student of mine.  Starting 6 years ago, I’ve watched her grow up. One of my favorite times is driving her from Chinese school back to CMAA for demo practices, its always great to talk with her and hear about school or her opinion on a variety of subjects.   She’s always been mature.  A quiet, and contentious student.  She’s always been consistent in her practice.  This focused and consistent effort is what earned her her black belt and it is what will help her see continued success wherever she decides to focus it.    

Minyi is an exceptionally talented girl.  She’s both strong in mind and body.  She learns quickly, and she’s able to retain what she’s learned, even through times when she’s too busy to make it to practice regularly.  She’s a good listener, quick to laugh (even at herself) and generally just fun to be around, which makes teaching her a real pleasure.  In the past few months I’ve seen something ‘click’.  She’s combined her athleticism with resolve and seen great success in developing her jump kicks, including her butterfly kick and now, very consistent, aerial.  Minyi is a superstar, and I am very excited to see what direction she chooses to apply her gifts!  It is a pleasure to award Minyi with her black belt! 

Tai Chi and Kungfu Documentaries
Entertaining and educational.  I’m excited to have discovered a new cache of Kungfu and Tai Chi documentaries.  Actually, there seems to be quite a bit on a wide variety of styles.  If you’re like me and don’t have time to sit and watch, I open them up on my Ipad or laptop and watch while doing the dishes or folding clothes! 😊   
Tai Chi Documentaries Click Here!

Kungfu Documentaries Click Here

Dagestan's Peaceful Warriors:

A unique documentary on one of the most elite martial arts schools outside of China.  
Dagestan's peaceful warriors: Watch Here!

Martial Arts Competition in Albany

Get ready to COMPETE! All levels are encouraged to compete in the upcoming North East Open! This competition is good for all levels (beginner-advanced). It's well run, with a good atmosphere! And best of all its right here in Albany!

Get all the info here:

Why compete? 

Competition. We learn important lessons when we compete and martial arts offer all types of competitions for those who seek to benefit from competition experience. From small tournaments to national and international tournaments, individuals can choose to compete in either individual forms or various types of sparring. From goal setting to developing the confidence to perform in front of a large group, it doesn’t matter which events they choose, the benefits remain numerous. From learning to deal with loss and disappointment, to winning gold, qualifying for a national team spot or competing internationally, important life lessons will be learned. Additionally, achievements can also be listed on student’s CV’s.

CMAA Water Bottles
Please help CMAA go green!  Throwing out hundreds of paper cups a week we have decided to ask students to bring their own water to class.  New CMAA water bottles will be available to purchase for $5, though any water bottle is OK of course!  Regular bottles of water can always be purchased during class for a dollar.  Thank you!


5 Element Palm Qigong Seminar
According to legend, Five Elements Palm was a health and therapeutic practice developed in the Wutai Mountains. The clinical application of the form started in the 1950s and has proven to be effective in disease prevention and treatment. Based on the principles of the Five Elements in Traditional Chinese Medicine, the five sections of the form are designed to address the five internal organs and their corresponding channels, and are therefore well-suited to diagnosis and treatment.

More info here: 


As usual please stay tuned for more exciting action at CMAA!