Chinese Shao-Lin Center Colorado Springs ~ Body Mind Spirit ~ Kung Fu, Tai Chi, Wooden Man

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12 Days of Shao-Lin Holiday Specials
*** New Students Try for TWO WEEKS FREE! ***

  • This is something I can enjoy with my 16 year old son
  • Improved overall quality of life
  • Stress-relief
  • Self-confidence
  • Effective self-defense
  • Encouraging atmosphere
  • Health and longevity
  • See what else CSC students have to say...

I Chin Ching - Bronze Peacock


Upcoming Festivals

*** 2018 ***

Conditioning & Stretching

Thursday, Jan 4
7:30 - 9:30 pm
Open to ALL levels!

Single Nunchaku Form
Saturday, Jan 13
12:30 - 2:30 pm
Open to ALL levels!

San He' Chi'en
Iron Shirt Training
Thursday, Jan 18
7:30 - 9:30 pm
Open to ALL levels!

4-Month Schedule PDFs
2018 Jan - Apr

Train with the Elder Masters

*** 2018 ***

Pa Kua Spear
Saturday, Feb 17
Colorado Springs, CO

Sunday, Mar 18
Denver, CO

Swoop Down Swallow Dagger
Original Shao-Lin Monkey Fist

Saturday, Apr 7
Albuquerque, NM

Elder Master Visits PDF

Master Tanisha's
& Empowerment

Tanisha Martin Empowerment Coaching

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150 Husbands, A Memoir for Hope and Transformation

Learn about her book,
150 Husbands,
A Memoir for
Hope and Transformation



Frequently Asked Questions

If you don't see your question here or would like to clarify something, feel free to contact us!

Jump to topic:

Age Limits
Membership and Fees
Training and Material
Personal Concerns

Age Limits

I'm too old for martial arts. It's too late for me to start kung fu, right?

Our biggest and smallest students sparring...Absolutely not! It's important to stay active at every age, and this martial arts school is not about doing the perfect splits, 1000 pushups a day, or beat-down sparring matches. This is a complete program for your body, mind, and spirit that does not rely purely on physical ability. You will gain so many benefits from doing the best you can—you will see improvements in all areas, and have a great time too!

My (Tanisha's) mom joined in her late fifties and got to 1st black in her sixties. We currently have a firecracker of a man in his seventies participating and advancing in the full kung fu program!

May my child who is less than 12 years old join?

Possibly! While our program is geared for teens and adults (12 and up) we may allow younger children on a case by case basis if a parent or mature older sibling joins as well. Feel free to speak with Master Tanisha about your child!



Membership and Basics

Do I have to wait until the 1st of the month to join?

Nope! Your membership starts the day you join class. For example, a 1-month membership beginning on July 9 expires on August 9.

I bought a year membership but I'm going to be gone for a few months or longer, do I lose that time?

Not at all. You may freeze your 3-, 6-, or 12-month membership once per membership period for any reason. It resumes the day you return to class. Make sure to give notice in writing or verbally upfront, as no freezes will be backdated.

I froze my membership a few years ago, can I still return and use it?

Of course! There is no expiration date on your frozen membership.

Do you offer family discounts?

Our rates are already incredibly affordable! Our best deal of $600 a year paid in full (which is the equivalent of $50 a month) and is available to all—whether you join with three other family members or are training solo, we want everyone to have the opportunity to participate at a great rate!

Do you have other locations in town?

We have one centralized location in Colorado Springs for the convenience of all. For such rich and colorful training, we even have a student who participates in classes at least two or three times a week all the way from Pueblo and Divide!



Do I have to buy a uniform if I'm just trying your school out?

No, you may wear comfortable workout clothes at first. A gi with our logo is required within your first 30 days, which we offer for sale at the school.

Can I wear my gi from another martial art?

For your first few classes, you may wear comfortable workout clothes. If you have a gi, you may wear it if it is primarily white and doesn't have any logos or patches. Gi pants, regardless of the color, and a T-shirt are most commonly worn in a case like this.

After that, a gi with our logo is required within your first 30 days.

Why do you have gi's and belts instead of the traditional frog-button uniforms and sashes?

Actually, if you have the opportunity to see the painted frescos in the White Robe Hall at the Honan temple, you will see monks with cross-tops and colored belts, much like ours, so what is exactly traditional may not be what we previously thought!

Additionally, we not only carry the traditions of the Shao-Lin Art itself, but also of our unique lineage. When the monks and Great Grandmaster Ie Chang Ming fled the Fukien temple and sought refuge in Indonesia among many other Chinese, there came a time when all Chinese things were banned. They couldn't use their Chinese names, speak their native tongue, or practice kung fu. (On top of which, it was a terrible time of oppression and slaughter, but that's another story.) They adopted the gi which was more recognized as "Japanese-style" for their protection.

What sparring gear do you use?

The minimum required is a mouth piece, and a groin cup is highly recommended. You may wear elbow and knee pads, and shin and forearm guards if you'd like. We do not use head gear (other than in special sparring classes for black belts) nor foot pads. Our sparring is nearly full contact, but light to medium force in a safe and controlled environment.



I have a black belt in another martial art. Will my rank be recognized here?

While we acknowledge and respect your dedication and skill in another martial art, everyone begins as a white belt here. If your previous experience helps you learn more quickly than the average person, you are welcome to advance through the lower belt ranks at the pace that suits you.

I have taken several years off from the Chinese Shao-Lin Center and want to start again, but I don't remember any of my material. Should I start over at white belt?

Not at all! There is no need to retest over everything to get back to the rank you were when you left. Jump on into classes and practice hours, and if you are a brown or black belt, attend and help lower belt classes to regain that material more quickly. We are happy to help you get back up to speed and continue moving forward!

I noticed all the black belts have dragon brands on their inner forearms. Do I have to do that too?

We strive to preserve the traditional Art, thus to advance to black belt, you must lift a burning hot cauldron with your arms on the dragon emblems, as the Shao-Lin monks of old did. There is no way around this. I'm totally kidding.


Training and Material

Do you do tournaments?

No, we do not generally participate in tournaments nor train in tournament-style sparring. As was stated in our lineage's history by Grandmaster Sin Kwan The':

If your primary interest is tournament skills, I advise you to seek your training elsewhere! Most of what you will learn here is too lethal for tournament use. I teach the ancient system of Shao-lin Do, "Art of survival, not of sport." As did the immortals, we should learn to destroy, so that we may preserve! It is a way of truth. The knowledge I offer you is not an athletic training; it is a sacred trust.

May I participate in tournaments?

Yes. You may participate in tournaments if you choose. Some students (including Master Tanisha) have done so in the past for forms, though it's not recommended you participate in sparring due to the intricate sparring rules tournaments generally have which we don't practice.

I am nervous about sparring. Do I have to spar?

You will not be forced to spar, however, you will be encouraged to overcome your fear and doubt, as sparring will help you break through barriers in your skill and within yourself personally. We have a controlled environment with safety as the first priority, and sparring is an integral component of your Shao-Lin training and in learning to apply your skills in an unpredictable situation.

How many forms do you have?

This is an interesting question, that, if I'm not mistaken, often comes from experience in other martial arts where material was limited to a handful of forms and techniques and eventually you reached the end. Of course, there is always improvement with what you have, which is very valuable.

Shao-Lin is definitely an Art you can grow with long-term! I have been in the art over 18 years, and have learned so many forms in a variety of styles and still have many more to learn. (If you want to know the exact number of forms I have personally learned, I am willing to share, just ask me!) I do not see an end to my own learning at all, so I know you will never get bored, that's for sure!

What I love about this is we are constantly challenged, we keep our minds invigorated with new and exciting material, while maintaining everything we've previously learned. Some students will choose their favorite styles and strive toward perfecting those more specifically. Having several styles under our belts means we are adaptable and will utilize the one that works best against our opponent's unique skills, should we find ourselves in a dangerous situation.

If you wanted a more specific number, the short answer is there are 12 lower belt forms and technique sets, 9 open hand, and 3 with weapons. Brown belt consists of 18 forms, 10 open hand and 8 with weapons. Each rank thereafter has a fantastic mix of new open hand and weapons forms as well.


Personal Concerns

I have a learning and/or physical disability. May I still join?

Of course! Train to the best of your ability and you will receive support and encouragement from your instructor and other students. The Shao-Lin Art encompasses more than just the physical realm or the ability to learn quickly and easily. You will receive countless benefits just by doing your best!

I heard the Shao-Lin monks were traditionally vegetarian. Am I expected to change my diet?

No. While many students and instructors within our system choose a vegetarian or vegan diet, it is absolutely a personal choice.

We may periodically offer health/diet/nutrition classes as a community service at the school, that is not part of the kung fu curriculum itself.

If kung fu originated with Buddhist and Taoist monks in the Shao-Lin temples in China, will there be religious practices that conflict with my religious or spiritual beliefs?

Not at all! We have students with a variety of religious and spiritual backgrounds. We will talk about Buddhist and Taoist monks as they pertain to the history of kung fu and the styles we learn, but no religious practices are done here. The "path to enlightenment" is also a part of our history and meditation, and each person interprets that how they will and according to their own personal spiritual beliefs.

We are especially pleased to offer a school open to people of all walks of life!



© 2011 - 2017 Colorado Springs Chinese Shao-Lin Center, Inc.
3011 N. Prospect St. Suite 110, Colorado Springs, CO 80907 • (719) 377-2108