Instructor Daniel Shaw-Abulafia
From a very young age I’ve always wanted to learn Kung Fu. I would watch Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan and Jet Li constantly and would always be inspired to be like them. I would watch them and think “Why can’t I do what they do?” One day, I got a leaflet through the door which was for a Beginners Kung Fu Class and straight away I told my mother: “I’m going to this class!”
I started training my first Kung Fu class near Arsenal Station in 2009 when I was 15. I remember my first class being very difficult, but feeling that it was the best exercise I’d ever had. What it meant for me was I pursued something that I’ve always wanted to do and it didn’t matter who I was as long as I set my mind to it.
I’ve had dyslexia for a very long time. I have struggled with speech and language, but I also see things quite visually which is an aspect that I use for Kung Fu very much.
Over the years, and as I was attending college, Kung Fu became a very important part of my life. I never took a day off even when someone told me that I should. I never give up; I train every day and plan to continue training every day for the rest of my life. To me giving up is one of the worst things anyone can do, because one day your life, and that of your loved ones, could depend on it.
I studied BTEC Level Two in Art and design, Media Production, a two-year Art Foundation and HnD in Graphic Design. During my final year in college I was training for International Competitions in China. In 2015 I became an International Kung Fu Champion in China winning three gold medals. I also hold four silver medals and one bronze medal.
After training for 11 years, I decided that I was going to take up teaching Kung Fu as my career.
I’ve now had six years of teaching experience and also taught a Tuesday evening Kung Fu Kids Class for three years. As I taught more classes, I began to see the benefits teaching can bring, and what I personally wanted out of it.
I believe that anyone can learn Kung Fu regardless of gender, race, sexuality or disability. I will teach anyone who wants to learn to the best of my abilities.
What’s amazing about Kung Fu is it can be whatever you make of it. What you get from being taught Kung Fu is a framework that gives you the space to be creative and individual in your expression of the style.
Even though Kung Fu can teach new skills, and take you to new heights and feats you’ve never imagined, you will always remain yourself, but a better version of yourself. By striving to improve, you help others improve. This creates a positive and strong environment around us all, as being able to fight also means you don’t have to.
Kung Fu is present in everything we do; we are not just training to fight. It impacts on how we deal with other areas of life, such as with work, relationships, building confidence, looking after ourselves, and thinking about how we treat other people.
Kung Fu becomes a tool to help us manage many different situations.
I tell my students that the whole point of Kung Fu is that it is hard work. Not everyone gets it straight away. But guess what? I was just like you: I went into my first class knowing it wouldn’t be easy, but if it was too easy there wouldn’t be much to learn. If you are struggling in class, remember if you set your mind on something, you can achieve it.
Tiger Crane Kung Fu
Our Kung Fu classes in London are welcoming and friendly, with an approximately 50/50 male/female split. Complete beginners are always welcome, so get in touch today to start your training!
Fitness. Self Defence.
Please contact Daniel and we will get back to you as soon as we can.