STQI Downtown Toronto School
Your Journey to a Strong Mind and Body

About Master Dao

Master Dao, 35th Generation Shaolin Disciple

Master Dao's given Shaolin name is Shì Cháng Dào (释常道).

Shì is the dharma identifier and is considered the last name for Western naming convention.
Cháng is the Linji family name (there are 5 Chan/Zen family names in Shaolin)
Dào is the given Dharma name by his master, which has a similar meaning to that of Daoism.

He is a 35th generation traditional Shaolin disciple with a verifiable lineage that goes back over 1,500 years.

For many years Master Dao trained under the careful guidance of Master Shi Guo Song, an authentic and famous Shaolin Monk from Shaolin Temple, China. One day his master accepted him as a disciple and supported his venture to help spread Shaolin arts and culture for the benefit of others.

Master Dao opened his own school in the downtown Toronto area in 2007 and has had the priviledge to teach Shaolin philosophy and martial arts to thousands of people across various disciplines including Meditation, Chan/Zen Philosophy, Shaolin Qigong, Shaolin Kung Fu, Shaolin Tai Chi / Gentle Fist, Shaolin style sanda /Chinese boxing, and self-defense.

He has made several television appearances, including One TV's program called Shaolin Tai Chi, CBC’s feature called Masters of the City, Keepers of an Ancient Culture, and news guest appearances on YTV The Zone, CBC News, Global News, CTV Your Morning, Fairchild Television, and Rogers Television with Joy Foster.

Master Dao: "My life vision is to help alleviate and prevent suffering for all by teaching others how to improve their mental and physical health, and by making these Shaolin arts and philosophy accessible to the masses."

Shaolin Disciples

Shì Yǎn Níng (釋演寧) a.k.a. Luka Pilasanovic

Luka discovered Master Dao in 2014 when his mother signed him up for Children's Summer Camp. He was immediately motivated to continue learning Shaolin kung fu. His extreme growth spurt brought many challenges to his training over the years. Through great strive and perseverance he has become not only a top teacher for both children and adult kung fu classes, but also a role model for all children. He has performed and competed in many events, including the 10th Zhengzhou International Shaolin Wushu Festival in China, the Canadian National Traditional Kung Fu Championships, and Chinatown BIA Festival. He continues to help mentor children today through our camps and classes and provides leadership into many aspects of our school. In August of 2022, Luka formally accepted his Shaolin discipleship.

Shì Yǎn Ān (釋演安) a.k.a. Rosemary "Ro" Stehlik

Rose's journey into the Shaolin arts began when she attended the Shaolin Warriors performance at the Sony Centre in 2012 where she met Dao Shi and subsequently joined his school. Since then she has been intensely training in Shaolin kung fu, Shaolin Tai Chi, and Qi Gong. She is the epitome of a Shaolin Warrior - struggling through life's challenges like so many of us, but never giving up, and intensely fighting back to overcome them. She has performed regularly at various events around Toronto. In 2014 she joined Shaolin Team Canada and competed in the 10th Zhengzhou International Shaolin Wushu Festival in China. She was chosen among 2000 athletes by Master Shi Guo Song, to initiate the games in the opening ceremony. She was a featured guest on Master Dao's show called Shaolin Tai Chi in 2021 (on OneTV). She has made many contributions to our school and has dedicated her life to helping others. In August of 2022, Rose formally accepted her Shaolin discipleship.

Shì Yǎn Qīng (釋演清) a.k.a. Andrew Cheng

Andrew began his Shaolin training in early 2015. At the time he was in his early 30s and struggling with mental challenges - self doubt, confidence, and rumination. He has shown great determination to focus and strive through his training in Shaolin Kung Fu, Shaolin Qigong, and Shaolin Meditation. In just a couple of years, he has managed to do what many could not - learn and apply Shaolin philosophy to overcome many 'stubborn' perceptual barriers. He is a great example of the power of Shaolin Chan (Zen), and has dedicated his life to carrying on the philosophy in order to help others. He has participated in many performances with our school around the city, and also competed in the 10th Zhengzhou International Shaolin Wushu Festival in China, and the 1st Shaolin Team Canada Wushu Festival. In August of 2022, Andrew formally accepted his Shaolin discipleship.

Featured Videos with Master Dao

Posted on Tuesday, January 12, 2021
Big Flooding Fist, or Dàhóngquán 大洪拳, is one of the top 10 Shaolin forms of all time. It is meant to be a powerful form with damaging short strikes, quick movements, and athletic movements. Master Dao demonstrates the traditional form of Big Flooding Fist at the Chinatown Festival in 2017.... [more]
Posted on Tuesday, January 12, 2021
The Plum Blossom Broadsword, or 梅花刀 Méihuādāo, is an exciting taolu form that demonstrates a certain mastery of Shaolin kung fu as it requires many elements of strict foundation jibengong training. It's a fast moving form with fast defense-based strikes. It requires great wrist strength and flexibility as well as athleticism. The broadsword weapon itself is the second key weapon of Shaolin (the staff or cudgel being ... [more]
Posted on Monday, December 16, 2019
Master Dao takes the opportunity to demonstrate a rare style of traditional Shaolin which we call Shaolin Tai Chi. It's more formally known as Shaolin Gentle Fist style. Here Master Dao performs Yun Quan, a Shaolin Tai Chi form that he created himself. It celebrates that soft and fluid nature of the cloud hands techniques and the ability of this style to accumulate qi and then use it to explode forcefully and powerfully. This was demo... [more]
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Posted on Sunday, February 06, 2022
Thank you Toronto Chinatown BIA for hosting such a wonderful celebration for Chinese New Year! Watch this video to learn more about Chinese culture and celebration of the Lunar New Year. Hear from many business owners in the Chinatown area. Master Dao appears at the 37 minute mark along with a couple of his students, Steven and Diana. You can join them and try a mini Shaolin Tai Chi class!... [more]
Posted on Tuesday, January 12, 2021
Watch this special Fairchild Television documentary on traditional Shaolin in Canada! It was filmed in 2015. Since it's in Mandarin Chinese, here's a quick summary of the content: Master Guosong talks about how he first established Shaolin in Canada. In the beginning he only had 3 students. It was important to teach student's properly through the traditional methods and first build their foundation... [more]
Posted on Monday, December 16, 2019
This was the second performance of Baduanjin Eight Brocades that our students with Master Dao did at the Chinatown Festival but this time on the main stage. Here we are wearing different shirts showcasing the Shaolin Monk in a warrior pose and a meditation pose. We hope to inspire more people to practice our traditional version of Baduanjin.... [more]
Posted on Friday, May 21, 2021
Shaolin Baduanjin Daily Practice for Stress Relief 22mins Easy to Follow! Start your day with Master Dao to practice soothing and relaxing qigong, and learn the qigong secrets of the ancient Shaolin tradition! In this complete class, you'll learn the basics of the Shaolin Baduanjin qigong form. There are no low stances or straining of your joints. Instead, focus on your breath, relaxing, and developing awareness of your mind, body, and spirit. This class will get you started in le... [more]
Posted on Tuesday, December 15, 2020
In this video, Master Dao demonstrates how he channels his inner qi (called subtle qi) to his head in order to lessen the blow of 3 stacked iron bars. You can see the level of mental focus required for this high risk demonstration. He makes it possible to break a three iron bars without any bruising or swelling. Hitting yourself with an iron bar is a lethal venture so don't ever try this yourself! It takes years of dedicated training an... [more]
Posted on Friday, May 14, 2021
We're excited to announce that a new television program for learning Shaolin Tai Chi will be premiering this Monday on OneTV (One Get Fit TV). The show features Master Dao and his students who guide you through relaxed and flowy movements that anyone can do. Learn how to breathe better, engage your core, and heal faster. The station can be added or found in many packages on all major Canadian TV cable companies. ... [more]
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Posted on Saturday, August 07, 2021
Description from visiontv.ca website: Exercise is not just for the young, healthy or already fit; it is one of the best defences against the toughest aspects of aging. On this edition of theZoomer, Marissa Lennox hosts ONETV Fitness Stars and an expert in diet & nutrition to discuss how to get back on track and demonstrate fitness tips. Our guests: Anjelica Scannura, host of Anjelica’s 22 Minute Workout, Anjelica’s Dance ... [more]
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