Sifu Arthur Berry 1979 founder

In 1972, Sifu Arthur Berry began his formal study of the martial arts. For 6 months, he studied an Okinawan style of Karate called Isshin Ryu at a local YMCA. Later that year, Sifu Berry discovered the ancient art of Chinese Kung-Fu.

From 1972 to 1975, he pursued the study of Green Dragon Tai Praying Mantis Kung-Fu. Between 1975 and 1977, Sifu studied Kaju Kempo, a Japanese Karate system known for both its strength and throws. 1977 marked a major turning point in the martial life of Sifu Arthur Berry. It was during this year that he met Chin Ho Yin, a Grand Master of Northern Shaolin Kung-Fu. It was Sifu Berry's honor and privilege to train under Grand Master Yin over the next six years.

1980 was another critical year in the development of Sifu Arthur Berry. That year, he earned his teacher's rank in Green Dragon Tai Praying Mantis Kung-Fu, while continuing an exhaustive study of Northern Shaolin Kung-Fu under the tutelage of Grand Master Yin. However, it was in this same year that Sifu Berry began to share the gift of Kung-Fu that he had endeavored for so long to master. As a result, Sifu Berry founded and opened the Chinese Kung-Fu Club of DeKalb, Illinois and has taught Chinese Kung-Fu to over 1,000 students.

Sifu Berry's Chinese Kung-Fu school emphasizes the true meaning of Kung-Fu, teaching history, mind/body training, and martial applications as they were taught to him by Grand Master Yin. Sifu Berry has competed in the black belt division of countless tournaments throughout the Midwest over the years. His efforts have earned him hundreds of trophies, awards and accolades. Additionally, Sifu Berry has been a tournament official since 1980 and continues to have an active role in the tournament scene across the Midwest.

Many of Sifu Berry's students have followed in his knowledgeable footsteps. Students from the Chinese Kung-Fu Club of DeKalb have participated in open tournaments, winning numerous trophies and awards in sparring, forms, two-man forms, and weapons divisions. A select few of Sifu Berry's students have earned the privilege of becoming teachers themselves and have carried on the traditions of Chinese Kung-Fu as passed down to them from Grand Master Yin.

Sifu Berry has been a distinguished member of the Midwest Kung-Fu Association, the American Karate Association, the Academy of Oriental Fighting Arts, and the American Kempo Bu-Jutsu Karate Association (AKBKA).

Sifu Berry's instructors include:

*Chin Ho Yin - Grand Master of Northern Shaolin Kung-Fu and a Buddhist Shaolin Monk of the Shaolin Temple in China. 5 plus years

*Lanard Martin - Instructor of the Green Dragon system of Tai Praying Mantis Kung-Fu and Chinese Boxing. 5 years

*Andy Torok - A master of the Kaju Kempo Japanese Karate system. Master Torok's school is located in DeKalb, Illinois. 3 years

*Larry Daniel - National Karate champion and instructor of Isshin Ryu Karate, Kung-Fu and a specialist in martial arts weaponry. 6 years

*Keychun Song - Master of 7 Star Praying Mantis, Shaolin Kung-Fu and of the 18 weapons of Kung-Fu. 2 years

Hello! My name is Sifu Arthur Berry, founder of the Chinese Kung-Fu Club of DeKalb, and I want to let you know a little bit about myself and what it takes to be a Sifu of Chinese Kung-Fu.

I have been incredibly fortunate to have studied a rare form of Chinese martial arts that has been passed down to only a few people in America. After 7 years of study and 10 years with several other traditional styles, I have found that a true Sifu is one whose teachings convey martial skill as much as self-discipline and compassion. An appreciation of the art's tradition, history, and an unwavering patience are all needed to effectively teach the extremely difficult art of Kung-Fu. The student must move through various levels of development, with the Sifu guiding and showing them that they must first crawl before they can walk, and then walk before they can run.

I went on to found the Chinese King Fu Club of DeKalb in 1979, and we have endeavored to remain traditional in our approach throughout our school's history. The true meaning of Kung-Fu is emphasized through the teaching of history, mind/body training, application, and the balance of Yin and Yang. Hundreds of people of all ages and walks of life have received instruction over the years, and our current class makeup consists of everyone from NIU students and alumni to teachers, doctors, carpenters, and mechanics.

We are an NIU campus-based club that emphasizes Kung-Fu for the serious-minded only. It is a very rare opportunity to study this form of Chinese martial art, but with the size of our training areas and the practical limitations of instruction mean that only a select few will be able to join.

Our club meets from 7:00 - 9:30 pm on Sunday, Tuesday, and Thursday. Feel free to contact me via email at and please mail any correspondence to the address at the bottom of this page.

Martial Arts Instructors

Finding the right instructor can be a long and time-consuming process, since legitimate and skilled teachers rarely advertise themselves or their willingness to take on new students. But as in other pursuits, finding quality instruction is the most important decision that you will ever make with respect to your martial training.

With all of that said, there are some general standards that can be applied to teachers, regardless of their style: Does the instructor demonstrate a clear love of his or her art and its teaching, or are they simply "martial entrepreneurs" looking to maximize profits to the detriment of their teaching? How well do they seem to work with their students, and do they promote a positive atmosphere with mutual respect? Are you up to both the physical and mental demands of the training itself?

Please click the following link for further suggestions on identifying good instructors:


The age range of students in any given school can vary considerably, with everyone from young children to seniors taking part. However, teaching even a small number of children frequently requires a far more concentrated and involved degree of instruction due to the great energy of the very young, so child classes are often much shorter in duration and conducted separately from their teenage and adult counterparts.

Because of this, one-hour classes are the norm when children are involved, while adult classes typically last for 1-2 hours, with both groups frequently meeting 2-3 times per week. Instructors usually charge a fee to cover the expense of any equipment used and for renting or maintaining the premises where training occurs. Monthly expenses for students of all ages can vary considerably depending upon the area of the country, and contracts are sometimes encouraged by the more business-minded.

On a personal level, you can expect a variety of positive changes to accompany any sustained period of serious training: Improved mental and physical discipline; greater self-confidence; a more pronounced appreciation of your art's heritage, culture, and tradition; and an outgrowth of respectfulness and compassion. In other words, devoting yourself to the study of your respective art can serve as a focusing lens for self-improvement in all areas of your life.


There is no quick road to success, and training in the martial arts is no exception. Rather than serving as a mere stepping stone to the next rung of the martial ladder, the basics of any art constitute an essential foundation that will be both strengthened and built upon as your training progresses. Not unlike how a tree depends upon its extensive root system to provide it with strength and stability, the skill of a martial artist will be restricted or advanced according to their mastery of the basics.

Progression and Ranking

Progress within any martial art is usually recognized through a variety of colored belts or sashes, with the highest level typically being black. Reaching such a high level of proficiency in your respective art takes years, but even its achievement is more of a new beginning than an end of your studies, since such students frequently become teachers themselves in a more official capacity and help to carry on the legacy of their school.

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