Winged Lion School of Tai Chi
Santa Fe, New Mexico
bringing you authentic teachings
Mike DeMarco and I both grew up in Erie PA and were trained in the Liu Seong kuntao system of Willem Reeders. Mike and I eventually each found Tai Chi Chuan. We both started a life-long pursuit of this art. I moved to Washington DC and became a student of Robert Smith, while Mike went to Taiwan.
In the early 1990s, I learned that Mike was launching the Journal of Asian Martial Arts. I still have the first issue, which has a first-rate article by Mike on "The Origin & Evolution of Taijiquan." JAMA was different than any other martial arts publication. The quality was extremely high! Mr. Smith was impressed and he wrote several articles for the JAMA. In 1999, Mike published Mr. Smith's last book, Martial Musings.
Mike is a one of the most influential writers and publishers on Asian martial arts and his work will be read for centuries. But we should not forget that he has been teaching Tai Chi for many years and I can personally attest to his ability to teach and motivate students.
I began doing Tai Chi with Michael DeMarco in 1993 at age 62. Despite several surgeries (knees, shoulders, etc.) over the years, I continued my Tai Chi practice whenever I recovered. Now at age 85 I can attest that Michael's teaching and my perseverance have contributed to my good health, balance, and ability to look forward to many more years of Tai Chi practice.
Sister Rita Panciera RSM
I began my studies with Michael De Marco in 2009, at the age of 65. I had suffered from extreme back pain and was taking cortisone shots every 6 months at that time. After approximately 6 months I no longer need the shots as the back pain had all but disappeared. After another 6 months I quit a 50 year smoking habit as I felt it was a contradiction of the Tai Chi principles that are an integral part of Tai Chi study with Michael. To say that Tai Chi has become a powerful force in my life is an understatement. Studying with Michael has been an enlightening and overwhelmingly positive experience. Clearly this is my unqualified recommendation of Michael as a teacher, and Tai Chi as a discipline for health, wellness and of course self-defense as you earn the permission to be taught various applications.
Santa Fe, NM
Over thirty years, I have dabbled in a variety of physical and martial arts with more than a dozen teachers. The quality and depth of knowledge in Mike’s teaching has stood out to me as uncommonly rich. In particular, his skill with the martial application of tai chi is extremely rare. Through my training at the Winged Lion school, I have finally begun to understand and integrate something deeper of the essence of self-defense—a combination of perception, balance, relaxation and sensitivity that make tai chi an incredibly effective martial art, when it is taught with traditional methods by a qualified Master. But more importantly, through the deeper exploration of tai chi principles I’ve been guided onto a path of self-discovery and healing that has been life-changing. Tai chi has significantly impacted my ability to relax, focus and stay more positive through life’s challenges, which, among other benefits, has helped me to finally quit smoking as well (and stay quit, for two years and counting). After all my exploration, this is the art I will stick with for the years to come.
Tai Chi is an extraordinary art. It is a strict discipline gently applied by this excellent teacher.
Santa Fe, NM
I have been a student of Michael's since the early spring of 2011. We were introduced by my mother who has studied with him for almost ten years. As a University of New Mexico student in the late 1970's I studied Tai Chi. I later studied with an other teacher in Santa Fe.
I can not recommend Michael DeMarco highly enough. His expertise and depth of understanding of Tai Chi and other Asian martial arts would be difficult to equal almost anywhere in the United States. He only recently stopped publishing the quarterly, Journal Of Asian Martial Arts after twenty years and has written, edited and published a treasure trove of other articles and books about Asian martial arts.
He is a wonderful and patient teacher leading his students to the edge of knowledge where they can make wonderful discoveries about Tai Chi and themselves. Personally I have found studying Tai Chi very rewarding for physical conditioning and mental and emotional calming, bringing a renewed clarity to my everyday life. Michael has enriched my life.
Santa Fe, NM
I've studied with four skilled kuntao and/or taichi instructors over the years, but I'd have to say the two years I was lucky enough to spend with Mr DeMarco is responsible for eighty percent of the martial arts I've learned. Really, his tai chi improved my ability to do everything I do—kuntao, landscaping, dancing, frisbee golf, pain management from all the things I listed.
Michael DeMarco is among the best practitioners and instructors I have encountered. Michael's teachings embody the true and original spirit of Tai Chi that embraces softness, not just in name or as an ideal but as a living practice. His push-hands abilities are at a very high level, and his teaching capacity is also at a very high level as he truly incorporates the principles of Tai Chi into his practice not just in word only but in action. This is true not just in the physical aspect of the art but in its more esoteric forms as a way of life, a road to be traveled, and what some might call a spiritual experience. I would recommend Michael DeMarco's classes above any teachers or practitioners in the area.
Santa Fe, NM
I feel very fortunate to learn from Mike. He is a patient teacher who is teaching me the fundamentals of tai chi. I am grateful to him as I am improving my health, balance and focus in all areas of my life.
Santa Fe, NM
Michael DeMarco is a man of broad and deep knowledge and experience in the martial arts. Over the years of our acquaintance, I have found Mr. DeMarco to be a man of penetrating insight and deep personal integrity. If you are interested in exploring the authentic tradition of Yang Style Taijiquan, especially in the well-regarded but hard-to-find lineage of Xiong Yanghe, I strongly recommend that you look into the Winged Lion School. Rich rewards await you!
Russ Mason, M.A., author and teacher of Yang Style Taijiquan,
I have been a student at the Winged Lion School for over 4 years. I have been exposed to other teachers and now know that there are many who really don’t even know or teach the basic Tai Chi principles. I am so glad that I was fortunate enough to find the geniune article in Michael Demarco. His teaching regarding the health aspects of Tai Chi has already made a great difference in my life, as in 2015 I suffered a collapsed lung and subsequent related problems. My annual examination this year showed all returned to normal. I attribute this as well as an overall increase in my sense well-being to the correct practice of Tai Chi.
In addition, I really enjoy the self-defense applications of the art, and Mike is so well versed at this, that one cannot help but absorb at least a small amount of these skills. I wholeheartedly recommend the Winged Lion School, if you have any interest in the benefits of Tai Chi practice.
Santa Fe, NM
Testimonials - Tai Chi, Santa Fe NM
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