Sifu Molly Jones
Learning & Teaching Timeline
ITEC Diploma in Anatomy Physiology & Holistic Massage, Seaton College, Devon
Master Matt Chapplow
Ip Man Lineage
Grand Master Ip Chun
Grand Master Samuel Kwok
My Martial Arts & Energy Healing Journey
by Sifu Molly Jones updated May 2019
I remember in 2003 being drawn towards a bookshop where there was a prominent display of paperbacks titled 'Fighting Spirit' at the front of the shop. This is a book written about the life and philosophy of Bruce Lee. As I picked up a copy a voice in my head told me to purchase it although at the time I had no idea why.
I did not consider reading the book until a few months later whilst searching for something to read on my travels. So, a plane ride later whilst laying under the Crete sun with the backdrop of ocean waves, I opened the book. I was slowly imbued with Lee's epic journey and his many artistic endeavours of which Wing Chun Kung Fu was a key foundation. This would also be my first introduction to the art.
A month later I felt the sudden urge to quit my regular gym sessions and to look instead for a traditional martial art. This did not come from a need to learn self-defence exactly (although it certainly comes in useful) but more a wishful fulfilment to personally accomplish something positive. I wanted to do something that would be a challenge, something that would enable me to become a stronger and more mindful person.
When I looked in the local directory for classes the first one that jumped out was... yes you guessed it.. 'Wing Chun Kung Fu'. So with a flash of inspiration seeded by Fighting Spirit a month before, I decided to join a class. I remember walking into my first session alone, I was the only female in the class at that time, which unfortunately would continue to be the norm for the majority of my training. I dedicated myself to this fascinating art and felt it was such a shame other females did not recognise its potential in personal development. In lots of ways I had many personal challenges due to the masculine energies that dominated the classroom, but I stubbornly persisted and now see that this was the most important aspect of my personal growth as I attained a deeper understanding of emotional energy and gained personal wisdom on how to balance and control this powerful resource within me.
The Wing Chun path has taken me on a personal journey of transformation both physically, mentally and now spiritually. I started my first four years of training in 2003 with a club based in Torquay under the Ip Man, Ho Kam Ming, Augustine Fong Lineage. I was attending classes three times a week plus private lessons. It was here that I learned the Wing Chun principles and drills that were priceless for developing speed, distance, reaction, footwork, centreline awareness and sensitivity. I also received an introduction to the wooden dummy form.
At the start of my second year in 2004, I became captivated by the subjects of human anatomy, body mechanics and our self-healing potential. I would often witness my teacher and his senior student perform trigger point therapy and structural adjustments on other students whilst training. This helped alleviate their pain and improve posture. I knew immediately this was what I wanted to do, so later that year I took my first step toward this by registering for a two-year ITEC holistic massage course, which I completed in 2005 in conjunction with my martial arts training.
As my curiosity grew towards the healing arts and energy medicine in particular, in 2006 I enrolled on a two-year Tui Na Chinese medical massage diploma course, which also incorporated a qigong practice. This developed my understanding of the meridian channels, yin yang principles and the subtle energy body. This healing work has uniquely advanced my Wing Chun by maximising my listening skills, sensitivity, and body awareness. The ability to listen to the body whilst being in a deep state of relaxation is essential for healing and holding space for another. These skills transfer perfectly into what I consider some of the key elements of the internal principles of Wing Chun.
In 2007 after four years of dedicated training with the Torquay club, a situation beyond my control forced me onto a new path. It was not long after this that I found a Wing Chun school in Exeter and they also kindly introduced me to their associated school in Weston-Super-Mare under the Ip Man - Ip Chun Lineage. I commuted three times a week to attend both the Weston and Taunton classes. It was there that I was able to advance my skill in the empty hand forms, chi sau, structural alignment, applications and dealing with multiple attacks. I also received my first introduction to the knife and pole forms.
In 2008 in additional to my Wing Chun I also joined a Capoeira regional group. This art was excellent for fitness, it helped develop my footwork, strength, flexibility, mobility and advanced core control. I continued this training for three years until 2011 when unfortunately my Mastre had to return to Brazil.
When my Tui Na massage course came to its completion at the end of 2008, my life circumstances changed dramatically. My hometown was not Exeter originally, so I made the decision to relocate by myself to Weston. A new path was set and now being fully qualified to practice Tui Na I continued to expand my knowledge of Wing Chun and energy healing. These arts combined continue to be a unique and complimentary tool for my personal growth and self-development.
In 2011 after living in Weston, I relocated to Bristol so that I could focus on expanding my healing clinic. It was here whilst working at a Buddhist meditation centre, that I was asked if I would be willing to teach Wing Chun to a predominately female group. After seeking consultation and permission from my Sifu at that time, I was happy to accept the role and was excited to show other like minded females the benefits gained from this incredible art.
In 2011 to advance my teacher training I flew to Portugal to attend a ten day Wing Chun training camp hosted by Master Samuel Kwok. It was there that I was fortunate enough to meet one of his first UK students who incidentally lived in close proximity to me. I received a blessing to be able to continue my studies with him as my kung fu uncle, he kindly accepted me as an informal indoor student. His guidance was integral in helping me to integrate all of my previous experience that helped transform my ability to produce explosive force known as fa jin.
Two years later in 2013 during my second Portugal training camp, I became close to one of Master Kwok's indoor disciples. He had worked closely with Sifu for five years and had competently learned the system. We went on to spend two years together, working every weekend to further our understanding of the art which included practice of the dummy, knife and pole form. We also spent alot of time refining our chi sau applications and continued to receive private tuition and attended numerous training seminars presented by Master Kwok over this period.
In 2015 with my yin style approach to chi sau and our combined study of Chinese medicine and healing art cultivation, we started to focus our interest towards the internal aspects of Wing Chun. This was complemented by our mutual interest in meditation, frequency energy healing and the expansion of consciousness. Over this time I was also asked to represent the Samuel Kwok Martial Arts World Wide Association and was given a instructor certificate.
Today what started as a intimate group in 2012 has since developed into a dedicated combination of both male and female students. The name 'Ip Man Wing Chun Bristol' Martial Art school for Health & Cultivation represents both the external aspects taught to me by Master Kwok and my other respective teachers and the internal aspirations of my school that I continue to study today. To continually evolve my Wing Chun and energy bodies, I apply the internal principles taught to me by my respective teachers of both internal Wing Chun and Yang Style Tai Chi. I also bring with me the ability to read the subtle energy bodies from my years as an intuitive energy healer. All of these experiences and abilities create a varied classroom content, in the hope that I too influence my students in discovering their own energetic abilities and self cultivation through the exploration of Wing Chun and the art of energy movement.