FAQs

Q. What distinguishes Meridian Gate Kung Fu Center from other martial arts studios?
Q. How is your approach different than Mixed Martial Arts (MMA)?
Q. What is the foundation of Meridian Gate Kung Fu Center.
Q. Why do you have a Moral Foundation?
Q. What is a Martial Foundation?
Q. Why do you teach Cultural Foundation?
Q. Does your training include forms or kata as in karate?
Q. How are forms a beginning point?
Q. How long will it take me to learn the art?
Q. Who is the instructor and what are his qualifications?
Q. What other qualifications does he have?
Q. How can I join Meridian Gate Kung Fu Center?
Q. What is the significance of the name Meridian Gate Kung Fu Center?

Q. What distinguishes Meridian Gate Kung Fu Center from other martial arts?

At Meridian Gate we offer an inclusive and complete system in both Chen style Tai Chi and in Hou Quan (Monkey Fist). We do not limit ourselves to a single focus of training or specialize in any one group of applications as done in many other arts. We do not emphasize grappling as in Judo, striking and kicking as in Karate or a health regime as in some Tai Chi styles. At Meridian Gate everything is used, concentrating on all aspects of the complete art. (See Curriculum.) Our instruction rests on a concept or principle bases, thus disallowing the student to become limited to a response that forces him/her to grapple or simply punch and kick.

Typically artists learn techniques to apply against a set stimulus (i.e. a kick, a punch, a grab, or a weapon) subsequently, the school will teach the student to respond with a simple block, kick, etc. as a counter action. We feel this type of instruction is detrimental to the advancement of the student in that it takes many years for the student to break out of his/her programmed responses. By learning from Meridian Gate how to control the opponent's space, the stimulus can be more readily defused; therefore, our instruction teaches reliance on the right (creative) side of the brain (that thinks in shapes and patterns) as opposed to a programmed or logical thought and action as relayed from the left side of the brain. (back)

Q. How is your approach different than Mixed Martial Arts (MMA)?

There are many similarities to both approaches; however, cross-cutting conflicts arise out of the MMA method. For example, MMA typically uses Judo, Ju-Jitsu, Brazilian Ju-Jitsu on its ground fighting and Wing Chun, Mauy Thai, Tae Kwon Do, or Western Boxing for its stand up game. What is problematic is that the ground and the standing game rely on two or more distinct philosophies that often give way to conflicting ideology.

Although Chinese Martial Arts are eclectic in nature, meaning it may take many concepts and engrain them into the practitioners' main style, a single ideology pervades. For example, Lao Shi Yungeberg initially learned Tai Chi in order to incorporate Fa Jing (soft energy) into his Hou Quan (Monkey Boxing). This did not change his Monkey Boxing but rather enhanced it by giving a new concept to employ while still keeping the same principles of Hou Quan.

MMA emphasizes competitive sport ideologies while Meridian Gate examines all the above within a single style thereby teaching principles and concepts in a way that can be applied for either the ground or the stand up game. This helps the student to truly become a master of his/her art rather than simply a jack of all trades. (back)

Q. What is the foundation of Meridian Gate Kung Fu Center?

Our training rests on the three bases: Moral Foundation, Martial Foundation, and Cultural Foundation. (back)

Q. Why to do you have a Moral Foundation?

This foundation gives the student the proper scaffolding to learn and develop as a martial artist. Martial arts are meant to enrich our lives, not control them. This idea of enrichment can take on different connotations from self-defense to having a vital and rewarding way of life. To reach these outcomes we follow the Chinese martial code of conduct, ethics, and etiquette which is ingrained in not only the culture of China but also in the philosophy that holds the society together. We pursue these ancient martial concepts of Chinese thought - referred to as Wu De (martial code). There are five aspects of Wu De: Respect, Loyalty, Humility, Trust, Virtue, and Honor.(back)

Q. What is a Martial Foundation?

A Martial Foundation is based on Traditional Chinese Wu Shu (martial arts). The initial curriculum at Meridian Gate is designed to increase the student's core strength, flexibility, body awareness, and basic skill program including rolls, break-falls, punches, kicks, Qin Na (to catch and seize), Qi Shou (sticky hands), and Qi Gong (Breathing exercises).

Once the student advances beyond initial instruction he/she will select a path of study, either Chen style Tai Chi or Hou Quan (Monkey Fist). The student will learn to fully utilize his/her styles for self-defense through sparring (both on the ground and stand up) against a full resisting opponent.(back)

Q. Why do you teach Cultural Foundation?

It is necessary to understand why these styles of martial arts developed and the influences that led to their creation. (See Kung Fu Style Page) (back)

Q. Does your training include forms or kata as in karate?

Yes. Forms are a beginning point in the erudition of a martial artist. Typical instruction allows the student to believe that he/she is fighting invisible opponents when performing a form. This is incorrect because it limits their ability to deal with situations that fall outside the choreographed movements of the form. Meridian Gate teaches forms the way that they are meant to be studied - as a training tool. Forms teach the student how to move, generate power, and attain proper body structure by instilling conceptual ideas of the style, thus eliminating rigid thought and allows for more creative, effectual action. (back)

Q. How are forms a beginning point?

Forms were developed as a set routine to guide the student through instruction. Once he/she learned and mastered a form including all the correct body structure, breathing, and power generation they began to forget the instruction. The concept of forgetting is similar to mastering how to walk. When you were little it was difficult to learn how to balance and transfer your weight in order to take your first steps. As an adult you seldom give it much thought to get up and walk across the room. This is the goal with forms as a beginning point: eventually you will move correctly without thinking about how or why...you just do. (back)

Q. How long will it take me to learn the art?

How long do you have? There is no end to the process of learning. Everyday you should expand your knowledge. (back)

Q Who is the instructor and what are his qualifications?

Lao Shi Yungeberg is the Chief Instructor at Meridian Gate Kung Fu Center. He has been involved in a variety of arts since 1980. The last ten years he has focused exclusively on Chinese Martial Arts.(back)

Q What other qualifications does he have?

Read more about Lao Shi Yungeberg on the Instructor page. (back)

Q. How can I join Meridian Gate Kung Fu Center?

Understand that the program is not like most contemporary schools where simple participation qualifies for advancement. There are certain skills that must be demonstrated to prove that the student grasps the physical, mental, and spiritual aspects of the art in order to advance. Anyone of good character may join. Call 970-308-6689 or email through our contact form

Q. What is the significance of the name Meridian Gate Kung Fu Center?

The name is translated from Chinese: Zi Wu Men Gong Fu Zhong Xin.

子午门功夫中心

The term Zi Wu means meridian which is defined as the highest point of achievement. At Meridian Gate we are reaching the highest point of ourselves.

The term Men represents a gate or door. To reach the highest point of achievement we must be willing to pass through a gate in order to reach knowledge. Our lives are built on choices and the first step to success is to open the doors that stand in our way and then walk through them.

Gong Fu means skill; workmanship; art; or ability. It also means the achievement of a lifetime (meaning the time and energy it takes to reach achievement).

The term of Zhong Xin means center and is made up of two words: Zhong meaning middle and Xin meaning heart. This term represents the middle heart or core of the student, the School, the art itself, and the verve of what we are creating at Meridian Gate Kung Fu Center. (back)

Any further questions please contact Meridian Gate Kung Fu Center at 970-308-6689 or by email through our contact form.