Me, Myself and Loong Fu

July 5, 2019

by Sade Opara-faparusi

I started at Loong Fu Martial Arts School about 8 years ago, at that time I was a 6 year old child obviously lacking any sense of direction. I would always walk past the school wondering what person is doing back hand springs and flick-ups and wielding a weapon because that’s what a majority of films had shown me of the world of martial arts. I had guessed there was more to it than that and being the inquisitive person I am my head was filled with questions. I begged my mum for months and finally she had let in, I was excited, scared, nervous but when I got there Heather Sije and Sifu welcomed me with welcome arms. It was a diverse group of pupils, no-one alike so I thought I would fit in just fine.

Weeks past as I attended the classes and I realised how strenuous being the next Jet Li or Jackie Chan was, I felt like cheating my way into success or not putting 100% was the best way to go but one day Sifu said “It takes time and dedication, you may feel like giving up or you’ve hit your wall but only you can break that wall and push that wall further away and cheating won’t help you.” Now as a as a six year old it was hard for me to grapple but it stuck with me. I didn’t let my I age stop me from hitting a pad as hard or as quick as I could, I didn’t let me being a girl get in the way with training with boys because at the end of it all we were all on equal ground. When I felt like giving up the mentality of breaking my mental and physical barrier stuck in my head, I shouldn’t settle for failure I should still push myself to succeed, I stuck at it with that philosophy through the years.

Over the years what I also learned is we are a family, a community, a unit and in a unit you need to work together otherwise you crumble. Communication is key whether it be between your brothers and sisters or your teachers because when one person is at fault, we are all at fault. Loong Fu has given me skills I couldn’t comprehend; confidence, drive, acceptance and I would hope patience and dedication. There are times where we have fun but there are also times where we have to put our heads down and push our selves as a team to reach our end goal.

mind-set you have, once you realise that you are not perfect and settle for trial and error you realise you get better progress, once you see that an ego puts you down and a empty cup entitles you to a better chance of success then you will get better progress and in Sifu’s words “ See that patience is a virtue.” Then you are on your way to being a martial artist.

Coming to this school was the best decision I ever made, when I’m on the verge of giving up and wondering why I didn’t pick competitive eating over Kung Fu, I say to myself who would I be without it. This school has built me up to be the person I am today, it has given me friends, a new family, a second home and in a way a new sense of purpose. I wouldn’t trade this experience for anything in the world. Wielding a sword is one thing but being part of something like this is a dream. It may push you, make you feel pain like you’ve never felt before but Loong Fu is a school that doesn’t just build fighters, it builds people.

me-myself-loong-fu1

The fun times I have definitely enjoyed, for example lion dancing, I would never have thought I’d be living the life of a majestic lion. Rolling, jumping, even eating as a lion and although I’ve been in the tail many a time I love the rush and I love seeing people actually enjoy and scream over something that without a team inside it or playing an instrument is just an inanimate object, we work hard to be the life and soul of an animal, which has been in Chinese history for years.

As I get older I realise that the art of Kung Fu isn’t actually about how physically talented you are or how smart, it’s the mind-set you have, once you realise that you are not perfect and settle for trial and error you realise you get better progress, once you see that an ego puts you down and a empty cup entitles you to a better chance of success then you will get better progress and in Sifu’s words “ See that patience is a virtue.” Then you are on your way to being a martial artist.

Coming to this school was the best decision I ever made, when I’m on the verge of giving up and wondering why I didn’t pick competitive eating over Kung Fu, I say to myself who would I be without it. This school has built me up to be the person I am today, it has given me friends, a new family, a second home and in a way a new sense of purpose. I wouldn’t trade this experience for anything in the world. Wielding a sword is one thing but being part of something like this is a dream. It may push you, make you feel pain like you’ve never felt before but Loong Fu is a school that doesn’t just build fighters, it builds people.

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