Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Kali De Leon

Many people have asked me: “What is the most valuable thing you’ve taken from your study of Kali De Leon so far?”

That’s an easy answer. I can sum up the most valuable aspect of our involvement in KDL with three words: Ama Guro Jun. I simply cannot say enough about what a rare individual is Ama Guro Jun De Leon. For those who were moved by my previous post “The Heart of a Master” – it was inspired by him. He has a Heart as big as all outdoors, but by no means does he suffer fools. I’ve known him to reject more potential students than most instructors end up teaching. So if your ultimate goal is to study Kali De Leon, your first goal should be to become the kind of person that Ama Guro would accept as a student. People think we’re exclusive, but he’s in a class by himself there.

I can answer that question another way as well. Ama Guro Jun may get angry with me if he deems me to be incorrect, but here it goes. The most common appellative placed after Kali De Leon is not ‘Style’ or ‘System’ but Methodology. That’s very important. On the technical side, Ama Guro’s training methodology is by far one of the best I’ve experienced inside or outside of FMA. I’m convinced that whatever Art you practice, the KDL Methodology of training can make you better at it. Ama Guro’s mastery of range, power, body mechanics, and economy of motion is PhD level – as is his ability to see and develop your highest potential as a student. At our last meeting, he confided to us: “I’m so tough with you guys because I want you all to be the greatest generation of FMA practitioners.”

We were fortunate to have had several opportunities to train with Ama Guro Jun this year. I can see a huge positive difference in my own development, and my students have been transformed. I also had the distinct pleasure of introducing/teaching Silat Melayu at this years annual camp in Toronto.

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