Certified Assistant Instructor Clifton Jackson
I want to start with a heartfelt "thank you" for taking the time to read this letter that could possibly be the seed that grows into a complete life transformation. (This is true even if you do not already have experience with the eastern health arts such as Chi Kung, Tai Chi, Yoga, Martial Arts, etc.) Just by actively pursuing the harmonization of your mind and body through a regular Tai Chi, Chi Kung, Chinese Yoga or Chinese Kung Fu discipline – you are among the top 2% of Americans who choose to improve themselves. As you know, most people don't - most stop growing in their late 20's or early 30's. This leads to at best stagnation, at worst atrophy or decay.
As you know, good health and inner peace do not happen by accident! (Poor health, stress, and unhappiness happen by accident.) Having a regular Tai Chi or Chinese Kung Fu practice reverses this effect. You get younger each year!
Certified Assistant Instructor Mario Rodriguez
Most people do not wake up each morning with a sense of purpose – an "aliveness" and passion, ready to seize each moment and embrace the day. Even among the few that do have a feeling of purpose – most don't have the health and vitality that comes with an eastern health discipline. Don't be among the many – be among the few!
Before I explain our Apprentice teacher-training program let me ask you a few questions:
• Do you feel better since you began your Tai Chi or Chinese Kung Fu practice?
• Do family and friends notice a calmness or inner-peace when you come home from class?
• Would you like to take your Tai Chi or Chinese Kung Fu practice to the next level and gain greater insight into youself and others?
• Do you like working with others – do you like to see others grow and realize their potential?
Certified Assistant Instructor Maria Spitler
If you answered yes to any of the above questions, read on. If you answered no to all the above questions – please stop reading (don't waste your time.)Your journey into finding your own power
So what is Apprentice teacher training?
The first thing you learn as an Apprentice Teacher is that you can only give what you have an abundance of. So this means that you must first transform yourself before you can help others to transform.
Unfortunately, personal transformation is not for everyone – it is for the few. So your journey begins with deepening your own practice and understanding of the mechanics of mind and body. For example, you will learn:
Certified Instructor Ryan Figg
• The 3 root causes of unhappiness (and how to avoid them)
• The cycles of the 5-elements and how to use this tool for understanding yourself, others and events.
• How Yin and Yang theory applies not just to your Tai Chi and Chinese Kung Fu practice but to your daily life
• How to identify the 7 chakras – and use this understanding for self-healing and healing others.
• Understand the 5000 year old language of the "I-Ching" and how it was and still is used to see patterns in nature, human affairs, relationships, etc.
• How can even a simple understanding of posture can bring a greater sense of energy and inner-peace.
• How to teach the Nei Kung (Tai Chi Foundation) and other parts of the Tai Chi and Chinese Kung Fu curriculum so you can share it with family, friends, and yes – even your students.
• We will even go over how to set up your own "practice" and recruit students (for those looking to become a professional Master Gohring certified teacher.) (The definition of professional is to be paid for your work – in this case paid for your teaching.)
• And much more....
Certified Instructor Thomas Terbay
Before you apply, there a few things to consider.
What do you want to gain from the teacher training program – or you can even think of the question as "who would you like to become as a result of the training."
Are you interested in teaching professionally or just learning to deepen your practice (we have a licensing program for teachers that want to go pro.)
Are you willing to completely "show up" for each class. To "show up" does not just mean to attend the class – you must be fully engaged in the process and embrace each moment.
Certified Instructor Peyton Hunter
Understand that a tai chi or kung fu teacher's deepest responsibility - and ultimate reward - is the ability to transform the lives of individuals seeking mental, physical, emotional and inspirational growth - and leading them to a healthier state of existence. Through this process you too become transformed. As the saying goes: "A rising tide lifts all boats."
When it comes to considering a Master Gohring’s Tai Chi & Kung Fu career – ask yourself:
Do I currently have a high level of job satisfaction? The fitness professionals industry has an 85% job satisfaction rate according to an Idea Health & Fitness survey. My personal belief is that Tai Chi and Chinese Kung Fu teachers have a much higher job satisfaction. Think about it – you live the Chinese Martial Arts lifestyle!
Certified Instructor Dixie Cochran
So who am I and why am I qualified to teach you? I am currently a 7th degree black belt registered with the National Black Sash Association. I have been teaching full time for over 20 years, and currently own Master Gohring’s Tai Chi & Kung Fu, Triple Oak Investments and Kick Butt Coffee. I began my training in the mid 80's under Master Teacher Larry Sanders. The discipline was Nei Wai Chia Tai Chi & Kung Fu – a Chinese hybrid of martial arts, chi gong and yoga. The biggest thing he imprinted on me (aside from all the form, movement, and healing techniques) was that ANYONE can benefit from the eastern arts – all you need to do is be willing to learn.
Through Master Sanders I was introduced to and trained with many private teachers: Master Michael Bryant (Nei Wai Chia Kung Fu), Professor Moses Williams Jr. (Hung Gar Tiger-Crane Kung Fu), Ron Eckelbecker (Taoist Yoga, Crane Kung Fu), Barbara Germersausen (Integral Hatha Yoga), and more.
Certified Instructor Theron Kassens
Later with Tom Whitaker (Nei Kung, Tai Chi), Grandmaster Cheng Jin Cai (Chen Tai Chi), Symon Stanley (Xingyi, Pakua, Taoist Tai Chi), Patrick Robinette (defensive fire arms), Master Jose Santamaria (professional martial arts leadership college), Master Jason Campbell (UMABT), Master David Shiu (Chinese Calligraphy and Painting) and Shi Yan Feng (34th Generation Shaolin). There are of course many other teachers I have trained with – but the above are the main ones off the top of my head.
So why do I train teachers? It is what I do, it is who I am. My purpose (dharma) is to study the secrets of health, longevity, success and inner-peace and share what I find. I have no plans to let all this info "die in my head!" I help others reach their highest potential. Want a full or part time career in Tai Chi or Chinese Kung Fu? I can help you. Want to open a school? I can help you. Want to buy an existing school? I can help you. I am fortunate not just to have found my passion years ago - but to be able to show others how to live theirs. I have spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on my "tai chi and kung fu education", and hundreds of thousands of dollars on my "business education." No need for you to spend that much – I already did the work (and spent the $!) Your education will cost a lot less than mine!
Certified Head Instructor Mary Grabhorn
Here are a few reasons to become a Apprentice teacher:
• Your self-esteem improves as you help others improve their lives.
• You become healthier – you deepen your own practice.
• You learn through students (anyone who has taught will confirm this.) The best way to learn a topic is to teach it!
• You become more "in tuned" to your self and others.
• You set an example to your students to live an "Apprentice Life" This means to always be growing, and to have the playfulness of a child with the focus of a Zen master.
• There is no shortage of work for a qualified teacher. If your goal is to own a school, there are financial rewards (and the reward of owning your own business that helps others.)
• You are in a good environment (compare this to an office environment.)
• You remember that life is not a race, it is a journey. You make time to stop, think, breathe, relax, and meditate. This becomes your "job."
• You can develop greater independence – most want control of their life, but few achieve it. When you are in business for yourself you have greater control your own destiny and that of your family.
• Also – your goals may not be material at all. For example: You may want to start teaching Tai Chi or Kung Fu to friends and family, and continue your personal studies while living the Tai Chi or Kung Fu lifestyle.
"Success is the progressive realization of a worthy ideal."
- Earl Nightengale
Be the master... A seeker of truth... An individual on a mission of positive change. It is my belief that we all have the ability to be such a leader. Walk this path and become your own seeker of truth, and learn to elegantly share your wisdom.
Remember that the Apprentice Teacher training is not for everybody. There is an application process to determine admittance. The focus is on all aspects of teaching and living the principles of Tai Chi or Chinese Kung Fu within a contemporary context and language. It is an exclusive opportunity to grow, connect, and contribute to your overall growth as a teacher and/or as a person.
You will be expected to show up at your best. Your reward is the certainty that you are meeting your highest standard and dreams about who you are and who you are capable of becoming. As Shakespeare said: "We know what we are, but know not what we may be."
"There is no way I am qualified to teach – I just started my Tai Chi or Chinese Kung Fu practice"
As you can imagine, I hear that quote a lot. However, if you were thinking that, you are correct – you are not qualified to teach. However, are you qualified to learn how to teach? The biggest qualification is the desire and openness to learning. In my experience, most Tai Chi and Chinese Kung Fu and eastern healing professionals begin their teacher training in the first year of practice. Remember my first teacher, Master Sanders? He taught me that "When you fight for your limitations, your reward is that you get to keep them!" Don't let your limited self-concept stop you from being all you can be. Poor self-esteem is the great killer of the human spirit.
However, if you do apply and I believe you do not have the ability to do this – I will not be shy in telling you. Twenty years of teaching full time has taught me to recognize when it does not make sense for a student to join the program. There are more students who want to learn than there are slots available – so I must make sure that our teacher / student relationship is set up for success.
Fill out the attached application and bring to me in person. I will set up an appointment for us to meet and go over your application.
Stay present and stay focused. I look forward to your success!
Master Teacher Thomas R. Gohring
May your future be bright and shiny,
Thomas Gohring, Master Teacher
7th Degree Black Sash Tai Chi and Kung Fu
PS #1 – Often I hear, "I'd love to but… it's not a good time, I'm so busy, I can't afford it, I'll have more time next year, etc." The same people who say that are usually very unhappy and love to cling to their excuses – and of course next year is no different than this year. Don't be that person. If you are inspired – TAKE ACTION TODAY!
PS #2 – As you can imagine, space is extremely limited. I only have so much time to devote to training Apprentice teachers – so I review applications on a first come – first served basis. Don't be left out.
PS #3 – Fill out the application and deliver to me in person.Click here to download the Apprentice Teacher Training Application
What Apprentices Say
What Apprentices Think of the Program
Dear Master Gohring:
As I look forward to receiving my Red Sash in about a week I am reminded of just how much I have accomplished for myself and my family since joining the academy almost two years ago. I came in with the intention of getting free passes to a movie that I can't even remember the name of now, but I will never forget the first impression of the school. It felt like I had come home. I don't know how else to describe it.
I tried out one class and immediately signed up afterward. I waited with an anxious feeling to be invited to join Black Sash Training, and then I approached you to join Masters Path training because I wanted to be a part of that too. I was one of the first group to sign up for the Certified Instructor Training (CIT) last September. I can't believe it has only been a year since I started that part of my training. I remember sitting in that conference with you, and listening to you ask me if I was an A a B or a C. The eager child inside of me was jumping up in my seat with both arms raised shouting "A! A! I'm an A! Pick me!" Thankfully, the more poised woman in me won out and I was able to calmly reply that, "I am an A sir." I knew I wanted to be an Instructor at your school, and looking back now I really had no idea what that meant. You let me join CIT as a Gold Sash even though you usually reserve the right to Green Sashes or higher.
The thought of the path of becoming an Instructor was scary, and in many ways unreal at first. I just couldn't picture myself up in front of the class. It was not yet a part of me. CIT classes have not always been easy. Some days were challenging and some days I felt like there was no way I would ever be able to learn it all. I earned a position as a part time Recruitment Officer and with the help of Mr. Terbay also I think I did pretty well at that. Then I really had to sit down with my self and figure out which path I was really going to take. Was I going to dive in and pursue this crazy idea of becoming a Tai Chi and Kung Fu instructor? I think that the calm quiet introspective qualities of Tai Chi helped me with this process. I turned down a job offer in my previously chosen career field of accounting to earn a more permanent position at the academy. It was a calming and completely terrifying decision. What was I thinking at 31 years old changing my career path after spending money and years in college to become an accountant!? As a single mother it was not an easy decision at all. Was a setting the right example for my daughter. What better example is there for her to see than my pursuing a career in something I love to do and will want to do for the rest of my life.
It is such an honor to look out on the training floor and see smiling faces of students that I brought into the school. I was their first introduction to Master Gohring's Tai Chi and Kung Fu. Many of them are choosing to join Black Sash Training or pursue the Master's Path. It is wonderful to know that I have given back something to the school by bringing in more members to our family because the school has done so much for me. I look forward to so many more challenges and accomplishments I see on my path. I want to be fluent in Kung Fu as well as Tai Chi. My mother called my cell phone recently and after hearing my message she asked me if she would have to someday call me Master Grabhorn. I couldn't stop the warm feeling and smile that came to my face.
Thank you for the opportunity to grow my Self as a human being through all the avenues available at the academy. Who knows, maybe my daughter will follow a similar path in her Kung Fu training. She is 12 now and has already decided to pursue the Master's Path when she returns next summer from spending time with her father. I know she eagerly anticipates earning her Green Sash.
Every day is not about what I get to do, but truly about who I get to become.
- - -
To Future CIT Apprentices:
About a year and a half ago, my brother had emergency heart surgery – of the triple bypass kind. While he was recovering in the hospital, I made a vow that I did not want to go through his same ordeal at any stage of my life. After his surgery, I started shopping around for an exercise routine, something I could do every day, but not get bored doing – something that would be good for my health, good for my mind, but not overly strenuous. Lo and behold, I stumbled upon Tai Chi at Master Gohring's school.
To date, the experience has been amazing. I've progressed substantially from my first day, when everything felt awkward and the uniform looked embarrassingly new. At this stage of development, I am about halfway to my black sash. I'm beginning to grasp the depth of the moves and the subsequent power and energy associated with the moves. My most recent progression has been to join Master Gohring's Certified Instructor Training (CIT) Apprentice program. The benefits were immediate.
Since joining the program about two months ago, I've noticed a change in the way I do my T'ai Chi. My form seems to have more meaning and substance and the energy feels different, more powerful, balanced and rooted. In the CIT Apprentice program we spend lots of time breaking down each move and transition into a number of steps. Subsequently, it has forced me to understand each move in detail. That detail has translated into smoother moves and transitions with a clearer understanding of the principle of sung.
Master Gohring is an accomplished martial artist with a rare gift for teaching. To really take your Tai Chi or Kung Fu to the next level, to really get a complete experience, I highly recommend the CIT Apprentice program. You won't be disappointed.
Mr. Andy Prince