The Pensacola Kung Fu School
So I went in expecting the worst and hoping for the best. I read the bio of Master Coughlin on various web sites. I spoke to the instructor, Jared, who is a senior student. He was very inviting and offered for me to come in and check them out. I was a little reluctant after 10 years of kickboxing and 5 years of grappling, but figured I would try them out.
So I went early, as is my nature, and Master Coughlin was there with Jared. I recognized both of them from the website, and was a little taken back to be meeting such a high level master on the first day. I was hoping to be able to practice for a few months that way I wouldn't look like the idiot that I did!! So we talked for a while as he was sizing me up and making sure I wasn't a psycho(I guess). He told me a lot about his history and what he does currently, which was even more humbling.
Master Coughlin showed me some stuff on his senior student, that was very impressive. Not jumping-flying-twist-kicks. When he put his weight into Jared, to demonstrate a strike, Jared flew a couple of feet back. Not chi flying which was evident when you heard a loud thump of flesh contacting flesh.
Then we got down to what I was there for. To see what this Kung Fu is all about. We went through a warm up for them, which is called a work out where I'm from. I was exhausted, and they were hardly breathing! Then we did some techniques, which were awesome! Not what I thought Kung Fu was like. It wasn't secret hidden techniques. I could see the combat application as soon as we started. Very effective.
A lot of the stuff was similar to stuff I've done in wrestling and BJJ. Then striking was directly applicable to any kickboxing that I have done. The training was fun and difficult at the same time. It left you tired and yearning for more.
The only thing that was bad in the whole experience was the knowledge that I could have been training here for years and wasn't. But, better late than never. I'll be going for more training on Wed, and I hope to be there for a long time!!!