Mahopac Wing Chun & Arnis
Founded by Sifu Dan Rivera.
Gung Fu Background
Sifu Dan is a private student of Grandmaster Leo T. Fong who is a first generation student of Bruce Lee’s Oakland school and a long time friend and training partner of Bruce Lee. Sifu Dan is a 5th Degree Black Belt in GM Fong’s art of Wei Kuen Do and is an Instructor in Oakland Jeet Kune Do under GM Fong as well.
Dan is also a Certified Phase One Instructor in DeMile Defensive Tactics under the late Sijo James DeMile, a first generation student of Bruce Lee’s Seattle school. Sijo was friend, training partner and student of Bruce Lee’s when he first arrived in Seattle in 1959. He was part of the very first group of students.
Dan is also a Certified Instructor in Paul Vunak’s Progressive Fighting Systems/ Contemporary JKD and Filipino Martial Arts, Larry Hartsell’s Jun Fan JKD Grappling Association, Jerry Poteet’s JKD/Sifu Paul Johnson’s The Real JKD Association.
Dan is an Ip Man Family Lineage Wing Chun Level 1 Instructor and is currently training under GM Sam Kwok
Fillipino Martial Arts (FMA) Background
Sifu Dan is also an instructor and practitioner of FMA, starting in the Inosanto-Lacoste system of Kali. Sifu Dan now trains under the Jedokan Arnis Sytem, founded by GM Jeff Jeds.
Sifu Dan began learning martial arts as a child in the 1980’s after seeing films like the Karate Kid and the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles… as most kids of the era did. Sifu began his journey in the arts with traditional Japanese Karate. Always aware who Bruce Lee was thanks to a poster in his uncle’s bedroom, he began to take notice of the old 70’s martial arts films. As he got older he took a break from martial arts during his “know-it-all” teen years but came back to the arts as an adult. He studied many different systems like Northern Shaolin Kung Fu, Krav Maga and Kenpo Karate before he decided to research Bruce more. He remembered reading in magazines about how Bruce revolutionized the martial arts world, how he was a major influence in the development of MMA and how he really made the world take notice of martial arts. Before Bruce Lee, one had to search for a martial arts school or receive an invitation from a member. It wasn’t until after Bruce that we had martial arts schools popping up on every block. Bruce made the world take notice. He then decided to try out the art of the man who started it all. After he began his JKD training it was like he had an epiphany. It all made sense to him. It was like a breath of fresh air to discover these concepts of simplicity, directness, the non-classical approach, adaptability and reality based training…he was hooked!
Training with GM Leo T. Fong has been an amazing experience for him. Leo has taught him more than just the physical aspect of martial arts. He has instilled in Sifu Dan the spiritual and deeper meanings of the arts and how to apply them to daily life, just as Bruce Lee had instilled in Leo Fong many years ago.
Sifu Dan wishes to keep Bruce’s art alive and share his philosophies, principles and concepts with others. His aim is to help them find the ultimate within themselves and discover their own truths.
Our curriculum will take the student through progressions that begin with the earlier Modified Wing Chun Gung Fu material taught during the Seattle era, through the Oakland and LA material while simultaneously training in Wei Kuen Do. Arnis/FMA is a separate class. On weekends we will have a blended class where the JKD and FMA students can all train together. Once the student has a solid foundation in the arts, then we can begin exploring how to integrate them. This will introduce the student to the concept of finding your own way and developing your own expression of the arts.
Contact us for more information about our classes
Location: Mahopac Wing Chun Kung Fu and Arnis 50 Miller Road Mahopac, NY 10541
If you live in the areas of Somers, Peekskill, Ossining, Mahopac and Carmel then you are close enough to come train with us!