Western Australia Chin Woo was founded in 1987 when a small group of people came together under Dr Tan KeeLee to train Northern Shaolin Kungfu. Classes were initially held at Victoria Park Recreation Centre, Patch Theatre and Leederville Recreation Centre. At that time, it was more of a Chinese Kungfu school, teaching the art of Northern Shaolin Kungfu (as taught by Chin Woo Athletic Associations all over the world) to members of the public.
In 1992, the vision of Western Australia Chin Woo began to change as its members started to embrace the fundamentals of Master Huo’s philosophy in establishing Chin Woo – to promote Chinese cultural fine arts. In 1994, Mr Jeow HengYong (a member of Selangor and Kuala Lumpur Chin Woo Athletic Association) came and contributed to the structure of Western Australia Chin Woo.
In 1995 Mr Lim KokYong (from Nanyang Junior College Lion Dance Troupe, Singapore and Northern Shaolin Kung Fu School, Singapore), Mr Lim ChinSai and Mr Kang YenHun (both from Nanyang Junior College Lion Dance Troupe, Singapore) joined Western Australia Chin Woo and taught its members the art of Lion Dancing, both Northern and Southern Lion Dancing. This contributed to the expansion of Western Australia Chin Woo and it became more culturally and community orientated. All proceeds from teaching and performances of Tai Chi, Shaolin Kung Fu and Lion Dancing went back into the school, in the purchasing of gear such as Lion Dancing costumes and martial arts equipment.
(from left) Mr Lim ChinSai, Mr Kang YenHun, Dr Tan KeeLee and Mr Lim KokYong
On the 25th of June 1996, with the help of Mr Thum TengKok (formerly a member of Penang Chin Woo Athletic Association, Malaysia) and Mr William Soon, both STC Partners Certified Practising Accountants, The Western Australia Chin Woo Athletic Association Incorporated was officially founded. The aim of the Association is to promote Chinese cultural fine arts to the people of Western Australia, to encourage a harmonious multicultural society based on the understanding and respect of various cultures. The Association is run by people who are genuinely interested in promoting Chinese culture and who contribute their time and efforts voluntarily.
During the 5th World Chin Woo Wushu Carnival in 1998, Dr. Tan KeeLee became acquainted with Grandmaster Guo YuanCheng (instructor for Tianjin Wushu Team and Tianjin Chin Woo Athletic Association, China). Grandmaster Guo YuanCheng trained under the famous Grandmaster Pan QingFu during his days as a Tianjin Wushu Team Athlete. Dr Tan KeeLee invited Grandmaster Guo YuanCheng to live in Australia to teach modern Wushu to the members of Western Australia Chin Woo. Dr. Tan and his students received coaching from Grandmaster Guo from 1998 to 2002.
During the year 2001, our Lion Dance Troupe expanded into Dragon and Lion Dance troupe when Mr John Chong and Mr Ken Woo (both instructors from Selangor and Kuala Lumpur Chin Woo Athletic Association, Malaysia) came and visited Western Australia Chin Woo and taught the art of Dragon Dancing.
Mr John Chong & Mr Ken Woo (second and third from bottom right) with Western Australia Chin Woo Lion & Dragon Dance Troupe
Throughout these years, all of the classes were conducted at public parks and recreational centres. One goal was to build up Western Australia Chin Woo with the required infrastructure and professional equipment. This became possible in 2002 when Western Australia Chin Woo purchased a small warehouse in Canning Vale, Western Australia and enabled Wushu, Dragon and Lion Dance training in our own premises.
Training Hall in Canning Vale, Western Australia
During the year 2006, Western Australia Chin Woo became official members of the Australian Kung-Fu Wu-Shu Federation (AKWF). The AKWF is the peak organisation representing the martial arts industry in Australia and the official member of the International Wushu Federation (IWuF). Western Australia Chin Woo has also been recently been appointed by the AKWF to be the State representative for Kung Fu-Wushu in Western Australia and the head of the organizing committee for State competitions and tournaments.
During 2008, Western Australia Chin Woo was joined by dragon dance enthusiast, King Long Ching from Johor Bahru Hua Tiong Wushu Association. King imparted a great deal of dragon dance expertise to Western Australia Chin Woo and through that, a strong bond between Western Australia Chin Woo and Johor Bahru Hua Tiong was created.
Dragon Dance with King Long Ching (Head)
Between the years of 2006-2011, Western Australia Chin Woo saw many successes in national and international Wushu competitions. In 2011, Western Australia Chin Woo members made up 9 of the 12 athletes in the Australian National Wushu Team and enjoyed multiple top 10 placings at the IWuF sanctioned 11th World Wushu Championships. Western Australia Chin Woo has also been honoured by many visiting high calibre instructors including world renowned, Mr YU Li Guang, retired head coach of the Hong Kong Wushu team.
Mr YU Li Guang instructs junior Hui Wen Tan