Two martial arts expos enlighten and entertain
By Zachariah Bryan
Northwest Asian Weekly
Last Sunday, there were enough punches, flying kicks, and dancing swords to fulfill
every Kung Fu fanboy’s heart.
That’s because two all-day events took place, including the First Annual Seattle
Martial Arts Expo at the Asian Resource Center in the International District and the
Second Annual International Martial Arts Championship (SIMAC) at the University of
Washington IMA Gym.
The Martial Arts Expo took the form of a demonstration, rather than a tournament.
Students of different schools took to the stage to demonstrate their unique style, including
Kung Fu, Tai Chi, Tae Kwon Do, Vovinam, Karate, Judo, BJJ, Kendo, Aikido, Arinis,
Capoeira, Mixed Martial Arts, and more. Some were aggressive, as if they were on their
way to beat up some thugs on the street. Others were more peaceful, displaying the
meditative and health qualities of martial arts.
As a special treat, making an appearance were grandmasters Norman Chin of the praying
mantis style, famed Hong Kong singer Alice Lui, and “Enter the Dragon” co-star Bob Wall. And by co-star, we mean the guy who was killed by Bruce Lee in the first round of villain Mr. Han’s annual tournament.
Over at SIMAC, students of varying ages from elementary school to college competed
in a tournament-style event. It was a demonstration of the values instilled by martial
arts, as young children displayed just as much discipline—if not necessarily as much
athleticism—as the young adults jumping, spinning, and flying in the air.
SIMAC was attended by Lt. Governor Brad Owen, Chinese community leaders, and
Kung Fu masters from around the United States and Canada. The event helped raise
over $35,000 for the Seattle Children’s Hospital, Kin On Health Care, and the Yunnan
earthquake relief fund.
For David Leong, owner of NW Kung-Fu and Fitness, martial arts is a lifelong education.
No matter how much a person refines his or her technique, how many decades devoted to
it, there is something new to learn.
“I tell students, don’t be in a rush to get to the end. There is no end. It keeps going, it gets deeper and deeper,” he said. “It’s like reading a 10,000-page book. You can’t wait to get
to that last page, and finally you get to it, but guess what? When you turn that last page,
there’s another 10,000 pages.”