My Personal Journey...
History and Experience
I have always been a huge fan of Martial arts. I was first inspired, like many, by the legendary Bruce Lee. Lee modernized Martial Arts and developed his own style Jeet Kune Do based on the fundamental art of Wing Chun – Gung Fu. Lee realized that after having a solid foundation in Wing Chun, cross training with many other Arts was most beneficial in adapting and making his own style effective and efficient. Lee's goal was to develop an Art without fixed movements or boundaries. Unfortunately, Lee passed before his dream was fulfilled.
In 1987, At the age of 15 I commenced formal training in Taekwon Do and Hapkido. Training night and day I earned a first degree at the age of 18. During this time I also crossed trained with the World Tae Kwon Do Federation,(WTF) style Taekwon Do and Aikido. Cross training helped make ring fighting more versatile and street defense more effective.
During my many years of training, I have had the honour and pleasure of training with many Masters and qualified Martial Artist in Taekwon Do, Hapkido, JuJitsu, Aikido, Muay Thai, kick boxing, Kempo, Wu Shu, Capoeira, complemented by a mixture of gymnastics. I blend the best of these Arts in the street defense that I teach. Taking the most effective fundamentals from each Art. Hapkido in a nut shell, is a compilation of Taekwon Do, Ju Jitsu, and Judo. The founder, found the balance in creating a somewhat soft Art that offers both an offensive and defensive element. I have a passion for Martial Arts. I have studied many Arts because I am in search of the ultimate Art. To date Hapkido has been the closest in offering both offensive and defensive elements. However, I have learned that every Art has strengths and vulnerabilities and it is the Martial Artist whom eventually defines the Art and not the other way around as is taught to the beginner.
Although I have a strong foundation in the Arts of Taekwon Do and Hapkido, over the last decade I have researched, studied, fine tuned, and I have redefined a self defense package that is very unique and effective. I have put many of the techniques to the test in real life based scenarios. Being a police officer has allowed me to fine tune the techniques for realism. Many of the techniques are based on natural laws and the resisting subject inadvertently pretty much applies the technique for you. Very little energy is required to affect the techniques and the outcome is minimal injury if at all to the subject. I have incorporated a philosophy and standard that utilizes No wasted movement, No wasted time, and No wasted energy. It is my dream to introduce this system to the world so that many people with goodness in their hearts can use this system to keep and maintain balance ensuring a peaceful world for all mankind. This Art has a name... Ki Jung Do. Please read the attached history subtitle to get an understanding of why it was created and what it consists of.
I have only touched on a "snap shot" of my journey, to give a picture and somewhat understanding of the training I offer. It is my hopes that my students benefit from the training I provide, as I pay the gift forward, and continue to be a lifetime student myself.
Master L. Hartley