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A Return to the Ancient Way of Training

by David Silver, July 30, 2007
YMAA Retreat Center

YMAA Retreat Center: Dr. Yang teaching students sword techniques

Over the last 35 years, Dr. Yang, Jwing-Ming has taught the benefits of Chinese culture and popularized traditional martial arts throughout the world. Dr. Yang now has undertaken a new mission: he is building a retreat center on 240 acres of remote woodlands, semi-isolated from the distractions of modern society, in order to establish a dedicated location for transmitting his complete knowledge to the next generation of teachers, and preserving the Chinese martial and healing arts. He is now accepting a select students to live and train with him for 10 years.

Click here for Retreat Center Candidate Info, Application & Curriculum

Click here for a Podcast video of Dr. Yang discussing the Retreat Center.

Click here for the Sept 07 Inside Kung Fu article about the Retreat Center.

The unique and precious arts of ancient Chinese culture are all but lost in contemporary China, and only a fraction of their complete depth has been transmitted to recent generations. In order to preserve the arts at the highest level possible, it is necessary to create an environment similar to that in ancient times. Living simply and training every day with Master Yang and additional instructors, students will again attain the high standards of martial artists of ancient times.

This Martial Arts Education Center will become a leading institution in martial arts society, offering a peaceful haven for the advanced training of meditation, internal cultivation, and all aspects of chinese martial and cultural arts for generations to come. If this traditional training is not passed from master to student deeply, the arts will continue to be downgraded until they are truly lost. The Chinese arts are recognized as complimentary treatment already in many hospitals worldwide, and it is critical that they are assimilated comprehensively, to create a true synthesis between healing modalities.

Dr. Yang is in a unique position. He carries the legacy of the generation of the old masters, and possesses the understanding of a new generation of martial artists. He has dedicated his life to bridging the East and the West, and researching the ancient arts with a modern scientific perspective, and he alone is capable of achieving this task.

As the YMAA Retreat Center develops, it will be a beacon at the center of today’s martial arts society, leading by example to reestablish the model of the traditional training facility. Based on a high level of martial morality education, emphasizing the development of art instead of violence, it will leave future generations the legacy of a discipline of respect, responsibility, confidence, and compassion.

Dr. Yang has created a clear path toward achieving this goal. In 2004, the first steps were taken to develop the infrastructure: roads were built on the property; a solar array was installed to provide sustainable, off-the-grid electricity; a well was dug; and construction has commenced on the living and training facilities. Dr. Yang has travels to CA at least twice each year, bringing senior students to work and train each day for two weeks, and to continue construction and preparations for the start of the 10-Year Training Program.

We are working to popularize the traditional Chinese arts worldwide on a large scale, and to see Kung Fu become highly respected once again. The study and practice of Kung Fu offers a meaningful path in life, which teaches one how to lead by example, how to create peace and harmony, and how to embody this ancient wisdom. The success of the YMAA Retreat Center training program will instill confidence in others that the traditional arts can be preserved, and that the spiritual and moral aspects of martial training can be rekindled.

For more information on becoming involved with this unprecedented project, please visit


Dear Dr. Yang,

Congratulations !!

It has been many years since I moved from the area, but I will never forget your sincere desire to preserve the essence of marital arts and qigong for all. I remember hearing many times that students must become better than the teacher otherwise the art dwindles and dies. Establishing the Retreat Center is a monumental step in achieving that dream !

I thank you so much for everything I have learned from YMAA and for your unselfish contributions to the martial arts community. I wish you and your selected students all the best of luck.

Sincerly, Mark Falco
Former YMAA student and Assitant Instructor

P.S. Special Hello to Alex, Jeff, Rami, miss you all!
Mark Falco – January 28, 2008, 9:10 pm
A very honorable task...

It's a shame there are barely any other teachers offering this type of training these days... If I ever get to a point in my life where I would have the time and money to afford it, I would definitely consider giving it my all for such an experience.
Anonymous – March 28, 2009, 10:13 pm

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