It has taken me a long time to get around to writing this testimonial because I’m not sure I can adequately capture in a few paragraphs how much the Portland Shaolin Center has enriched me as a martial artist and as a person. When I first walked into the school three years ago, I was on the hunt for the ‘right school’ for me; I had quite a bit of prior martial arts training, but had taken a long break and felt I’d been missing something important in my life that entire time. For some people, martial arts is like the best kind of parasitic infection: it gets into your blood and doesn’t let go. I was dying to train, but I knew I wanted certain things:
I must admit, I was worried about being able to find a place that satisfied most, much less all, of the things on my wish list. I visited many schools, and Portland Shaolin, despite being on the other side of town from where I lived, was the one that hit all the right notes, and did it in spades.
Three years later, I know without a doubt that I made the right decision. When I’m not at home, or at work, I want to be at the school. There are times I’ve been there for two hours but still don’t want to leave because I’m having too much fun, and you know, “we could run through that form one more time.” Or days when I’m tired and lazy, or had a bad day at work, or am sore from the last day’s class, but I get up and go to kung fu anyways, because it’s worth it, every time.
If my list matches your list at all, come. Come for the martial arts, stay for the community. It’s something special.