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I am a senior level (black sash) instructor in the American Tao System of Internal Arts. We study and practice the internal arts of Chen Tai Chi, Hsing-I Chuan, and Baguazhang. I also study and teach Chi Kung (Qigong) and Chin-Na. I began studying martial arts in 1973. I was 20 years old, a college student, and was inspired by Bruce Lee and the Kung-Fu TV show. My first teacher was Grandmaster Sin The in Lexington, Kentucky. I studied Shaolin with him. During the 1970's I also studied Taekwondo with Master Randy Chambliss. In the early 80's, I studied Tien Shan Pai Kung-Fu (wushu) with Karen Vaughn in Cincinnati. I met Sifu Phillip Starr in 1987 when I moved to Omaha, and earned a black sash in his Yiliquan system. He taught me the basics of Hsing-I, Tai Chi and Bagua. In 1998, I began studying Chen Tai Chi with Jim and Angela Criscimagna. They are indoor disciples of Grandmaster Chen Xiaowang. I've also learned from Grandmaster Chen and his brother, Grandmaster Chen Xiaoxing, the head of tai chi training in the Chen village, Henan Province. Their ancestor, Chen Wangting, created tai chi about 350 years ago. I have also learned from Mike Sigman and other very good instructors. I have a website, www.internalfightingarts.com, where I teach all three internal arts online to students around the world. The site is very video intense. Eastern philosophy, especially Zen and Taoism, are very important to me. I am developing a means of explaining these philosophies to Americans in plain English so they can apply them to daily life in the 21st Century USA. I call it American Tao. I am 55 years old and enjoy competing in tournaments, often sparring young black belts (and even winning occasionally). I can answer questions about the internal arts, chi kung, tournament competition, philosophy, and keeping fit after the age of 40 or 50.

Experience in the area

Winner of two gold medals at the 1990 AAU Kung Fu Nationals. Continue to compete. My students also are very successful in tournaments. Becoming a teacher and winning the respect and frienship of my students. Teaching chi kung (qigong) and centering techniques that have helped many students deal with stress and illness.

What do you like about this subject?

Tai Chi is considered a "soft art," but when done properly, there's nothing soft about it. It's a very powerful martial art. The internal arts are very complex and deep.

What do you still hope to achieve/learn in this field?

I want to teach people the internal arts around the world through my online school at www.internalfightingarts.com.

Something interesting about this subject that others may not know:

Every movement in tai chi is a self-defense technique. There are no wind-ups or transitions between movements. Everything you do can be used for self-defense. It's amazing!

Something controversial or provocative about this subject

The internal arts, which I study and teach, are believed to be "soft." Very few Tai Chi people fight in tournaments. Tai Chi is a martial art and a good Tai Chi person should be able to fight with any martial artist of any style. I (and my students) prove that it can be done.

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    K = Knowledgeability    C = Clarity of Response    P = Politeness
liam05/13/101010thanks, and thanks for the leopard kung .....
rigpa04/29/10101010Sifu ken, Was very polite which I .....
Collin02/08/10101010Awesome... Best answer iv ever had from .....

Recent Answers from Ken Gullette

2016-03-31 Preferred exercises:

Hi Kevin,  Lunges are great for building leg strength.    Running stairs is another good exercise - both for cardio and leg strength.    Finally, holding postures will make your legs very strong. If you

2013-09-23 Chi:

Hi Tom,  All I can do is give you my opinion. I'm a Tai Chi instructor, I've studied acupuncture, and I have practiced chi kung since 1987. I just celebrated my 40th anniversary of studying and practicing

2011-08-16 Young Grasshopper:

:)  Yes, it's from the Kung Fu TV show, when Master Po called Kwai Chang Caine "grasshopper" because he couldn't hear the grasshopper at Master Po's feet.    It does have something to do with Taoism. Master

2010-05-12 leopard kung fu:

Hi Liam,  I don't practice leopard kung-fu, but it would be common sense that the Shaolin centuries ago didn't have much knowledge of the African leopard. I would bet that they didn't even know Africa

2010-04-29 qi gong and spiritual enlightenment:

Hi,  No chi kung exercise can produce spiritual enlightenment.    Chi kung is made up of breathing exercises, during which you detach from the cares of the day, turn your mind inward, and calm the mind


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