Keeper of Lau Gar Kung Fu
Grand Master Yau
Sifu Alan Neeld
All of my instructors are DBS checked and have taken the relevant British Kung Fu Association First Aid courses. They are trained to the highest standard and look forward to helping you on your journey in Lau Gar.
4th Degree Black Sash, Chin Na Instructor
My journey into the Martial Arts started when I was a teenager. I was being bullied, which led to me losing confidence in myself. There was a flyer at my local leisure centre. It was informing people about Lau Gar Kung Fu lessons that would be starting. The flyer said that it would be great for fitness as well as confidence.
I started my first lesson the following week. At the lesson, I was made to feel extremely welcomed and right from the very start, I felt part of the group. Over the first six month period, my confidence grew. I also managed to gain strength, both mentally and physically.
During my years of training in Lau Gar, I have made many friends and I’ve learnt a lot about both the art and myself. Through my training, I have also learnt Chin Na. Chin Na is about locks, throws and using pressure points, all of which can be found in the Lau Gar forms.
I also studied Krav Maga as well as Wing Chun. Despite learning several different disciplines, my true roots are with Lau Gar. It is a complete style, including kicks, sparring, self-defence, locks, Tai Chi and also Chi Gung.
2nd Degree Black Sash. 1st Dan Black Belt Judo
My journey into the martial arts started at the tender age of seven and a half when I took up Judo classes. I found it not only a great confidence builder but also it a brilliant insight into the world of martial arts. I attained a Black Belt, 1st Dan, at the age of eleven. Unfortunately the Judo club closed due to the instructor retiring.
I stopped training for a while but my life was not complete without martial arts. As a kid I loved watching Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan films, which urged me to want to learn Kung Fu. A few years later, an advertisement in the local newspaper rekindled my passion for the martial arts, it gave me the opportunity to get back into it and this became the beginning of my Kung Fu life.
“Real living is living for others” – Bruce Lee
When I reached the grade of 7th Cup Brown Sash, Alan encouraged me to teach my own class, and I must say, I have found the whole teaching experience extremely rewarding – especially when I see my students reaching Yellow and Purple Sash status and enjoying every bit of it along the way.
Taking the 1st Degree Black Sash at the Temple in front of Master Yau was an amazing experience and an honour, which I will never forget. I have and continue train alongside my sister, Emily Jane Taylor, who is a 1st Degree Black Sash. We have helped and encouraged each other to be our very best. We have put a lot of hard work, dedication and focus in all our training and inspired each other.
Recently, I have passed my 2nd Degree Black Sash. One of the Lau Gar Sets that I have completed which happens to be very special to me involving my favourite weapon, among the many weapons that I have experienced thus far, is the BROADSWORD set. At the time, this set felt like I was in a film, maybe one of the films that had inspired me as a child.
Lau Gar Kung Fu, I now find to be a way of life, of which I owe a lot to my instructor Sifu Alan Neeld, for his teaching and guidance over many years. As I look forward to learning more in Lau Gar, I am keen to occasionally incorporate some of my Judo and Nunchaku experience into my classes, to further the knowledge of my students and other instructors and what is truly remarkable is that Lau Gar Kung Fu is one large family, where everyone is willing to help each other for a common goal, where nothing is too much trouble.
May this journey continue …………………
First Degree Black Sash
I have been training in Lau Gar Kung Fu, under Guardian Alan Neeld, since 2010.
I have attended many of the Lau Gar workshops and master classes. I’ve also been lucky enough to take part in the official Lau Gar Summer Course, held annually.
Thanks to my attendance to these courses, I have been given the opportunity to train with both the Masters, (Grandmaster Yau and Master Russel) and other Lau Gar Kung Fu instructors from all over the country.
“A good martial artist does not become tense, but ready. Not thinking, yet dreaming. Ready for whatever may come. When the opponent expands, I contract; and when he contract’s, I expand. And where there is opportunity, I do not hit, it hits all by itself.” – Bruce Lee
First Degree Black Sash
My name is David and I am twenty-nine years old and I live in Birmingham with my parents. I like doing Kung Fu and I have already earnt my First Degree black sash. I am currently working on gaining my Second Degree Black Sash, using the Lau Gar Sword.
My teacher is Lau Gar Guardian, Alan Neeld, he as well as everyone else in the Redditch Lau Gar class have helped me a lot. When I got my First Degree Black Sash, my family were all very proud of me.
I have other hobby’s as well as Kung Fu. On Mondays and Wednesdays, I volunteer in the League of Friends coffee shop at the hospital. They call me the “Toastie King” there because I make the best toasties. On Tuesday, I go to a cooking class with some of my friends where we prepare and cook our lunch to eat. On Friday, I work in a Garden Centre with some friends, and then on a Saturday morning – I work in a care home.
I am very busy, but I like all my jobs and I enjoy seeing all my friends and going out with them!
First Degree Black Sash, Vipassana Meditator
It seems like such a long time ago when I first began my Lau Gar Kung Fu journey. I remember walking into my first class feeling excited more than anything. Daniel Chodynicki was my teacher at that time. Before the class started, he performed Lau Gar Luk Hup Kuen (Purple Sash Set Movement)
I can still recall how impressed I was with the power and speed of the set, which was somehow still graceful at the same time. I knew then that Lau Gar Kung Fu was for me. At that time in my life, I was out of shape, in a job I disliked immensely and lacked direction in general. Lau Gar changed all of that.
Before too long, I found myself attending three classes a week, mainly under Alan Neeld’s tuition. I thought about Kung Fu morning through to night and eventually, and perhaps subconsciously, I started to apply what I had learnt (Self Discipline/Effort/Perseverance) into my life.
Suddenly, I was fit and healthy again. I felt strong and unafraid of anything and anyone. I left my job and started up my own business. I learnt to push myself through pain and tiredness. I learnt that I could push myself beyond limitation. My life has never been the same since. I can’t put into words how much I owe to Lau Gar Kung Fu, Master Yau, Alan and Daniel and all that went before them but, I will forever be grateful for being taught this beautiful art form.
Emily Jane Taylor
First Degree Black Sash
I can remember watching my older brother practising Martial Arts from as little as 3 years of age, little did I know how much I would look up to him and wish I could do the same.
I only ever messed about when I was younger, merely acting as a dummy for my brother to practise his moves. I never really thought I’d ever be any good, however, 6 years ago, I decided I wanted to get fit and learn something that would be an everyday part of my life.
It all started when I was canvassing a Kung Fu advert for my job in advertising. I spoke to a rather friendly gentleman, named Alan Neeld. Coincidentally, this man also happened to be my brother Daniel’s previous Martial Arts instructor. I decided to go along to the new club Alan had opened in Redditch, the town where I live. I can still recall giggling with nervousness in my first Kung Fu lesson, hardly being able to do one press up and thinking I was never going to get to grips with my coordination.
In the coming weeks, and with extreme determination, I found out how much I enjoyed this new found hobby of mine. When I look back now, I am amazed at how I could have ever lived without Lau Gar Kung Fu in my life. I certainly made the right decision to join the club, and the personal journey I am taking now is fascinating.
Sifu Alan Neeld has taken me down a path I never knew existed, he has taught me many techniques and skills, which have impacted the way upon I live and think. Not only has he been an inspiration to me, but also like a father, guiding and supporting me. His guidance has changed my life in so, so many ways.
Alan Neeld was taught by a Chinese man we all have come to know as ‘Grandmaster Yau’. He brought the style over to England from Hong Kong in the 70s. I can only imagine how privileged Alan must have felt to have been taught by the most respected Master in Martial Arts of him time in the United Kingdom. For a long time, I was left thinking “Would I ever get to meet him and experience some of his words of wisdom?”
Luckily, I have now had the privilege to have trained on a few courses, instructed by Grandmaster J Yau. At the time, I was completely in awe of him, and will remember the courses forever, more than this, I will take with me knowledge and understanding of some of his most desired techniques, not forgetting his anecdotes and prolific stories.
In April 2009, I woke up feeling incredibly nervous…. today was the day I had trained so hard for and had only dreamed of, my 1st Degree Black Sash grading. To face Master Yau himself and show him all I had learnt. However, I did it and I can not tell you how proud I was when I received the letter saying I had passed.
I have come a long way from that fateful day 6 years ago, and I have met some good friends along the way. Since then, I have conducted my own training course, teaching the Chinese Fan – a technique I had learned from the first ever female guardian, Morag Quirk. I have performed sets and fought at the National Championships, the largest Kung Fu tournament in the country. In addition to this, I am honoured to be able to help teach in the classes, and hope to pass on the traditional art of Lau Gar Kung Fu for many years to come.
One thing I found in my time of training, and can honestly say, is you are always learning and developing your own technique and style. This creates the person you are – mind, body and soul.
I’ve been training Kung Fu for many years now. What got me interested was, not only seeing Bruce Lee, and many other Martial Artists in films, and so so. I had mental health problems, such as Depression and someone recommended Martial Arts to me. One day, I got the courage and I went down to my local class, at Cocksmoors, where I met Alan Neeld, who is still to this day my senior Instructor.
At first, when I started, I did not have the confidence to do the Kung Fu, but Alan kept with me and gave me the tools, motivation and the confidence to progress in my art… This gave me the confidence to open my own club. The club is now one of the longest-running for over ten years at the Manningford Hall venue in which I’ve had the privilege of teaching countless students and the joy I get in seeing these students mature into young men and women.
Before I started Lau Gar, I did look at a number of other clubs but I did not find the buzz I was looking for till I met Alan Neeld. If you are looking for a challenge, to gain confidence and at the same time get fit, meet new friends, why not come and have your first lesson on us?What have you got to lose… but you have so much to gain.