This blog post is to recall an April 7, 1986 article in the Richmond Times-Dispatch about the Richmond Moy Yat Kung Fu Academy and Anthony ‘Moy Tung’ Dandridge, shortly after he founded his (and Richmond, Virginia’s) first Ving Tsun Kung Fu school. Staff writer Ames Arnold notes Moy Tung’s relaxed and informal yet disciplined approach to kung fu training, and his emphasis on kung fu’s applicability to life, not just self-defense. The article is based on an interview with the young Sifu Moy Tung and has numerous interesting quotations.
Today, Moy Tung is a grandmaster with three generations of students teaching under him. Three decades after the publication of the below article, the same authentic Ving Tsun kung fu is being taught the same way, and its roots in Richmond, VA have grown even deeper. Today, the Richmond metro area is home to three local branches, as well as the Moy Tung Kung Fu Association headquarters. Around the U.S. and the world, there are twenty-plus Moy Tung-lineage sifus teaching.
Kung Fu: Time and Energy Join to Form Art by Ames Arnold, Richmond Times-Dispatch
Martial arts mentor Anthony Dandridge says most people think kung fu is just a way to beat up the bad guys. That, he says, is the popular notion learned from movies, where fighters with fancy spins duke it out with much grunting and groaning.
“We think kung fu is about fighting,” the 26-year-old native Richmonder recently said of the common misconception. Actually, Dandridge contends, kung fu “means time and energy.”
“You’re doing kung fu and you don’t even know it. Chinese practice it; Americans take it for granted,” Dandridge said. For Dandridge and others involved in the kung fu way of life, the training systems develop a relaxed attitude that colors every action. It’s this whole- life approach that Dandridge said he teaches in his new school …
Certainly, the kung fu forms are used for self-defense, Dandridge said. Some kung fu moves are deadly, he’ll admit.
But there’s more to be gained than a fighting style. Dandridge insists the discipline and the rigorous repetition required for kung fu excellence can carry over into one’s work and home life.
“You practice the kung fu not to learn how to fight, but you learn how to fight. It all exists together,” Dandridge said.
You can read the entire article in any online news archive covering the Richmond Times-Dispatch, or on your next visit to the Main St school. We are posting this excerpt and single photo of the three in the article for educational and historical documentation purposes, We believe this constitutes fair use.