Student Testimonial by Florence C.
I'm a keen practioner of Tai Chi and Qigong, when possible, I practice with masters from China, invited by our teachers here in Normandy, France. I wanted to enjoy intensive practice during my staycation. I was so intimated to register on-line! Well, the results went beyond my expectations. Thankfully to an excellent pedagogy and progression, I could achieve a lot more than I had contemplated. I have moved on the the next level now, and again the progression allows improvements in the posture, in the quality of the circulation of energy,in the relaxation of the muscles in coordination with the breath, and so much more ... The on-line courses, with a user-friendly website, permit to work at your own pace and this is absolutely wonderful. I'm looking forward the coming years to become a dedicated practioner!
Student Testimonial by Liz W.
Our son started training at the school in 2015 at age 6. Just as the school has grown and matured, so has he. His skill and confidence has progressed and he not only has fun but takes his training seriously. Dao Shi runs a wonderful school and an excellent kids program. The focus on the Shaolin virtues, such as perseverence and respect, provides admirable goals for the kids to strive for. All of the instructors are devoted and skilled and the sense of support and community is a real highlight of being part of the school. Our family wouldn't hesitate to highly recommend STQI to anyone interested in Kung Fu.
Student Testimonial by Val B.
When we went into lockdown I was so sad because I knew how much I would miss training in person with our classmates! Then Master Dao told us he would be teaching live classes! Elijah and I were so excited, but we have a small place! We quickly found out that didn’t matter! We train as hard as we did when we were outside! Both of us do! We get an excellent workout and we are still progressing in all aspects of our training! Forms, weapons, punches, kicks, stances, all of it! Master Dao gives us feed back during class and Shaolin theory as well. I have to say training online live with Dao it has been great , you sweat like crazy, get a great work out and you get to continue to move forward with your Kung Fu! Elijah and I have a really good time. Even with our small space we’ve managed to figure out a way to run and kick and do our forms, everything we need to do for class. We are even able to continue learning Yin Shou Gun with a short staff that we got from Master Dao. We train hard! I really enjoy training with Master Dao live and we feel it gives us that much needed sense of community because you’re not training alone. Your fellow students and Master Dao are there training with virtually . You can say hi, ask questions and chat at times! I highly recommend training live, it’s the next best thing to being there in the school. I’m so thankful we have this option to keep training even in lockdown so we don’t loose our momentum!
Student Testimonial by Kelly C.
In the last four months, I have spent over 100 hours training at STQI Toronto and it has been an amazing experience. The teachers and the community are truly exceptional. In my time at the school, I have;
- practiced the moving meditation, body awareness, and energy cultivation of Chi Gong and worked on understanding the power of momentum, core, and breath chi in Gentle Kung Fu with the head master of the school, Shifu Dao;
- worked on harnessing the raw power of my mind and body through the intense physical and mental training of Women's Self Defense with lead instructor Rosemary;
- watched my 4-year-old son be influenced by great role models and have fun while learning how to meditate and focus on his Kung Fu training in the kid’s classes.
Four months ago, I was overworked, stressed, out of shape, overweight and really not in a mindset where any spiritual growth would have been possible. Over the last four months I’ve become visibly leaner, stronger, more flexible, and have more cardiovascular endurance. I’m regaining the muscle definition I had pre pregnancy and have lost four inches off my waist!
There are many logical or rational reasons why I choose to follow the path of training in martial arts, but ultimately, in my time at the school, I have learned that there is also something deeper... something spiritual to be attained through dedicated practice. It is not just that my head understands the benefits and feels the pull to train, but also that my other two centers of consciousness, my heart and my gut are lit up while training leading to a more joyful and creative experience that is now working its way into my life more broadly.
I am grateful for the school and all of the teachers that have helped me on my journey so far. I'm excited for the next four months and my next 100 hours of training!
Student Testimonial by Joanna S.
My son max has been coming to Classes at the STQI for a year and a half, since he was 3 years old. he has made great friends and loves the environment at the school. I like the discipline offered in class, and he even meditates at home!
Student Testimonial by Eric L.
Maintaining my Kung Fu studies online despite Quarantine has been a life saver, keeping both my sanity and my strength intact. Shifu Dao has done an amazing job of bringing the school experience into our living rooms with his live classes - deftly managing to preserve the feeling of individualized instruction, in-person inspiration, and class unity. There is no apparent loss of either sophistication of technique, or possibilities for growth in this format – if one just has the self discipline to press the button and show up! And as with the Shaolin monks who – as Dao teaches us - once had to overcome persecution and practice their art in secret in a confined space, so too this unique phase of our training actually feels like it’s providing a deeper understanding of Kung Fu. The icing on the cake, is that training side by side with my son in our home has been a fantastic bonding experience!
Student Testimonial by Steve S.
The live online are very similar to in-person classes. Shifu Dao will show you how you can easily do all the same drills and forms in a small space. In some ways it is even better online. You can do the classes from the comfort of your own home. Shifu Dao teaches all the classes himself, and you can watch your own techniques and forms in your video feed to see how well you are doing.
Student Testimonial by Isabelle B.
Because of the lockdown, I didn't practice Qi Gong regularly at home: it was harder to find the motivation, to stay focus, etc.
I made many excuses to not join the virtual classes: not enough space at home, hard to find the time with no distractions and maybe a bit shy too. But I was starting to forget what I had learned before and I decided to try one virtual class: it was simple, there was no judgment, it was nice to talk with everyone and to start learning again.
After a few weeks, I can now say that it feels really good to be back in class! I had forgotten how regular training was important and I'm now looking forward to my weekly training just as much as I did when it was in-person!
Student Testimonial by Edan T.
The school has made a difference to us as a family. Both my son and I take classes and my partner feels welcome and comes as support. We feel like we have joined a community that is welcoming and supportive and will help us advance both physically and spiritually.
Student Testimonial by Steven K.
Finally - an excellent online resource to learn Shaolin kung fu!
Student Testimonial by Shannon S.
The school is really inclusive, offering a wide variety of classes and times that gives tremendous options for people of all ages to participate. I feel there is a class for everyone and the teachers really focus on making each class a worthwhile experience for each student. Whether you are looking for something energetic, to self-defence, to relaxing, there is a course for you, for all ages and genders. I truly feel welcome here as does my daughter who can't wait to come every week. Very people friendly! Thank you!
Student Testimonial by Michelle B.
My family has been thrilled with the experience at the school. The family-centered, community-oriented nature of the school has made it a place of learning, support, and growth. I can see the growth in my children in terms of strength, discipline, and patience, and look forward to continuing this journey over the next several years.
Student Testimonial by Chris L.
Emituofo! This site is like a dream come true for me. It encourages me to develop self-discipline with the brilliant XP system. When I have questions on how to do something, now I can watch Shifu again and again until I figure it out. This has become an indispensable resource for my home training regimen. Emituofo *clasped hands*
Student Testimonial by Thomas T.
During this pandemic, I, as many others as well, have had my ups and downs. I had decided to use the time to learn something new and thus tried several online courses in martial arts. This program is by far the best I have come across and the only one I subscribed to. The experience-gain system helps me so much to keep motivated. The mandatory assessments force me to really take my lessons seriously. The step-by-step structure gives me all the tools to learn this beautiful martial art in an efficient way. Every evening after work I am already excited about my kung fu class. Thank you for this amazing course. I am looking forward to the more advanced classes.
Student Testimonial by Natalie B.
Just a quick note to say many thanks for making the meditation course something that can be accessed by past students and those who sign up for other online classes. I am getting a great deal of value from it and i've only just begun!
Student Testimonial by Janet Csontos
As a Generation X participant, I can attest to the life-changing effects of Qigong and Stretch Therapy classes at the Shaolin Temple Quanfa Institute. I began these classes after my physiotherapist recommended that I try qigong to alleviate the persistent pain I was experiencing in my lower back. The pain had been accumulating for the past ten years in conjunction with stress factors that have led to burnout and problems with my liver (I don’t drink alcohol, yet liver enzymes have increased in my blood), and also, possibly, from a 3mm misalignment (anterolisthesis) between my L4 and L5 vertebrae recently revealed in an MRI. In my efforts to heal myself while on a sick leave from work, I have tried a combination of approaches, including physiotherapy, psychotherapy, tapping, craniosacral therapy, massage, naturopathic treatment, herbal remedies, acupuncture, exercise, immersing myself in nature, connecting with community, yoga, and improved diet. While each approach is of value, I felt I was at a standstill in terms of unblocking what seemed to be hopelessly constricted muscles. My physiotherapist gave some stretches that were mildly effective, but they did not seem to get to the root of the pain. I am so grateful that she made the recommendation to try qigong.
At long last, after 10 years of increasing pain, I have found a source of relief that feels like it is getting to the heart of my discomfort. After only attending three times a week for the past 5 months, my muscles are actually loosening up and I can finally rotate my hips again. Amazing.
In both Qi Gong Foundation and Intermediate classes, I am learning how to get in tune with my nerves, and I am learning how to control and sustain my energy. This is profoundly significant for recovering from burnout. While the Qi Gong classes are invaluable, my favourite class is Stretch Therapy where I am learning a variety of decompression stretches that go deep into my lower back and hip area. The relief is incredible. In addition to the stretches, Master Dao focuses on a different area of the body each week providing explanations of the anatomy of different joints, as well as explanations of acupressure points from Traditional Chinese medicine. I am looking forward to the upcoming focus on how to take care of our organs as I am concerned about my liver. I did not expect the sessions to be so comprehensive in addition to the physical aspect. It has been truly fulfilling in terms of a mind/body educational experience.
When my doctor told me that there was nothing I could do about the pain and misalignment in my lower back because it was part of the aging process, I was reluctant to believe it and hopeful that I would be able to find a solution. Now, after going to Stretch Therapy, I am learning exercises to increase bone density and strengthen joints. I have learned that it is possible to realign my vertebrae, and I have acquired self-massage techniques to eliminate pain. In the Qigong classes I have learned that pain is a symptom of pathogens in the body that accumulate where there is stagnation, and I am acquiring the techniques to increase the flow of energy throughout the body to keep things moving. Aging does not mean I have to helplessly endure pain. Now I have the tools to alleviate it. Now, Dao’s words that “pain is not normal” echo in my mind as I utilize the stretches that I have learned to bring relief.
Master Dao’s commitment to his own ongoing learning is reflected in his ever-evolving curriculum. He is a cool guy who engages his classes in a laid back manner while being super focused and clear, with a highly informative instructional approach that is characterized by kindness and humour. He has created a welcoming and friendly environment for all ages to learn at their own pace. He also provides the option of online instruction for every Qi Gong and Stretch Therapy class, which has made it easy to attend when weather is unfavourable or if my schedule gets tight. While I prefer in-person classes, I appreciated the online sessions that I attended as I was able to clearly compare and correct my posture according to the instructor’s, visible on split-screen mode on my computer screen.
What a gift to have come across this place. Thank you Master Dao! You rock!
Student Testimonial by Pam G.
Doing the Qi Gong classes makes me feel positive towards approaching life's daily challenges. I also notice an improvement in my posture and have more energy overall. I also feel at peace with everything and everyone.
Student Testimonial by Michael M.
I've been here for over 3 years and I have been in Level II Kung Fu. Though I am in my mid-fifties, I am able to achieve so much more than when I was in my twenties. My arthritis and rotator cuff no longer hinder those things I still do; hockey, cycling, etc. The strength of all parts of my body has increased dramatically as well as my flexibility! I have never felt better!
Student Testimonial by Madeline C.
We love STQ because it allows our girls to have fun while at the same time fostering a sense of integrity and respect in them. They both enjoy coming to Kung Fu so much - they hardly realize the valuable lessons of commitment and tenacity that they are learning. Thank you!
Student Testimonial by Erica K.
Thank you so very much for this online program you have created. I have never done Shaolin training in my life (I've never tried Kung Fu or Qi Gong before), so I was nervous to learn online. But, recently I became curious about this kind of training and this ancient practice. I found your school through an online search and was so excited to see you had a full program all online. I am practicing in my 3rd week now and have found the setup of the online platform very straightforward, fun and motivating. In fact, my Shaolin lessons are now my favourite part of the day. Thank you for all the hard work you put into creating this platform. It is extremely well thought out and makes it a wonderful experience for a new student like myself.
Student Testimonial by Aimin L.
I have been with the STQI for 3 years, starting from level I and transitioning to Adult level II. My STQI experience has been a very rewarding one. My mental and physical well being are improving every week. My social network has expanded by meeting so many Shaolin members and sharing each other's life experiences. STQI provides excellent training, learning, and mental therapy environment and I encourage others to try it during our open house. You would like it.
Student Testimonial by Kristan L.
We put our children aged 6 & 8 years into Kids Kung Fu at STQI four years ago. They have been attending regular classes 3-4 times a week. We have seen such a positive change in both kids. They are much more focused when it comes to school work, their self-confidence has greatly improved and their over-all behaviour has improved at home and at school. Both kids are in the instructor program and competed in the Shaolin Wushu Competition in China in 2018. We highly recommend putting your kids into classes at STQI. You will see a huge difference and only positive changes.
Student Testimonial by Andrea N.
I have tried meditation before, and this is the most comfortable I have ever felt meditating! Master Dao has a calming presence and creates a safe, respectful and sacred space for meditation. He uses straight-forward language, and sets simple ground rules to help guide the practice. His questions and discussion topics create rich material for reaching a clearer sense of self and a more peaceful mind.
Student Testimonial by Ian M.
During the pandemic, I was looking for a program to learn a new skill that would improve my physical fitness as well as my mental well being. I researched Qi Gong and Tai Chi and began practicing through online resources. I came upon Shifu Dao's online program one day in my search for a deeper curriculum on Shaolin Qi Gong and Tai Chi. I tried out the sample week available. I enjoyed it so much that I am now currently enrolled in both the Tai Chi and the Kung Fu program! Shifu Dao has created a wonderful platform for learning Shaolin Kung Fu, Tai Chi, and Qi Gong as well as a free meditation course available to all students enrolled. The lessons are clear, precise, and very well structured. There is an XP system in place that unlocks new chapters and lessons once you achieve a certain number of points. This is a very excellent system in my opinion as it has kept me regimented in my training. The best part of the program is the assessment points where you post a video of yourself doing the forms and Shifu Dao critiques back on your progress with detailed feedback and points of improvement. I really feel that I'm being coached for improvement in my training as Shifu Dao guides you through each video lesson and each video feedback assessment. Thank you for sharing the knowledge and training of Shaolin to us!
Student Testimonial by Hathaitip T.
We have been for six months. I found my son has a flexibility skill amd he is stronger than previous. The lessons are good not only physical health but they are also benefit from mental training. I would recommended kids class for parents who are seeking for indoor activities
Student Testimonial by Man-Yin C.
While there's no substitute for attending classes physically at the school, this website provides the next best thing. I just tried the full class today and, believe me, it's as intense of a home workout as you can get. The best part is that you get instructional videos of Master Dao performing each of the moves. It's a reference I would frequently use to touch up my techniques. Highly recommended.
Student Testimonial by Andrew C.
Training at STQI Toronto has completely changed my outlook on life. Four years ago, doing any of the Kung Fu drills would've been next to impossible in my mind. Yet, through the virtues of perseverence and strive, I'm now quite prolific at many of the drills. I feel touched by Chan philosophy, to always look beyond the limitations of the mind. Highly recommended for all ages.
Student Testimonial by Florabelle R.
Most authentic Kung Fu classes in Toronto! If you are looking for an enriching experience, look no further. I've learned Kung Fu practical skills, and a healthy mentality with meditation and Qi Gong. Classes at STQI have given me an overall learning experience. There's no better school!
Student Testimonial by Koan W.
I like doing the virtual classes during lockdown. I can attend more classes because there's no commute. Also, I'm doing more broadsword than during the regular classes. It's easy to follow Dao's instructions and we get individual attention in break-out rooms. At the beginning it's a little hard to get used to, but once you get used to it it's great! Dao shows you how to do everything in one spot if you don't have enough space. I recommend everyone try it to keep up your training during the winter.
Student Testimonial by Willem L.
Learning shaolin Kung fu has really changed my life. I have learned so much since I started. Even when we can’t go to actual in person classes, I still go to the online classes. Just because we can’t be at the school doesn't mean we can’t train. You can still learn so much , even in online classes. The Warm ups are modified so you can stay in one spot but other than that, the content has stayed pretty much the same. I definitely think it’s still worth going. There are even some benefits of online classes. For example, if you need to, you can go off separate from the class and practise something on your own
Student Testimonial by Sam J.
I attended one of my first Gentle Kung Fu Classes. My back had hurt for the past week, prior to class. I was very pleased to find that all the pain was gone by the end of class. Shifu Dao explained that it was probably because I released all the tension in my lower back during class. I felt great as soon as the class was over, and was able to return to my regular workouts.
Student Testimonial by Eric Y.
I have two young kids enrolled at STQI. The teachers are great. They are strong and compassionate leaders. The facilities are clean and bright and easy to get to downtown. The school helps my kids with fitness and co-ordination as well as basic learning skills. I definitely recommend STQI.
Student Testimonial by A. L.
Qi Gong and Gentle Kung Fu have been great forms of exercise and stretching, and help me relax during the week. I enjoy learning the forms and appreciate the encouraging and patient nature of the intructors.
Student Testimonial by A. A. Y.
Qi Gong is very relaxing and I get a great stretch. All of the Qi Gong instructors are very knowledgeable and correct my movements when something is out of place. Gentle Kungfu is a great class to attend when injured but still provides a different kind of challenge than regular kungfu. Gentle Kungfu is taught by patient, caring instructors who take teaching seriously and make it fun to learn. Both are great classes to attend.