Stan is one of the UK’s leading Kung Fu experts or ‘Masters’ and co-Founder of Masters Black.
Stan was born in Stockport, but raised in Buxton, Derbyshire, UK along with his three older siblings. His parents, who moved from Hong Kong to the UK in the late ’60s, worked hard to make sure all of their children remained connected to their Chinese heritage, and Stan spent nearly all of his childhood holidays visiting his family’s remote Hong Kong village, Kam Tim in the New Territories. It was here that Stan first began to learn Chi Kung – slow movements of the body combined with breathing and meditation – from watching his Father and local friends and family.
Having grown substantially by the age of 12, Stan was a natural candidate for the rugby team and quickly shone as prop for the first team at Stockport Grammar School. But his height and his ethnicity made Stan stand out and he became the occasional target for name-calling and aggression; It was following a threatening encounter with a local thug that Stan realised he had to learn to defend himself. Stan enrolled for lessons in Thai Boxing in nearby Manchester and immediately showed a natural flair.
As he progressed through school with A levels in Maths, Physics and French and then onto Leeds Metropolitan University to study IT, Stan began to merge the two disciplines of Chi Kung and Thai Boxing. He started developing his own style of movements combined with regular trips to Hong Kong and training with revered Masters to help him focus and calm his mind and succeed. This training was behind closed doors as none of these Masters taught in traditional schools, they shared their knowledge to a closed circle. His initial jobs after University played to his physicality and he worked in security roles at venues including the infamous Hacienda nightclub in Manchester, where he looked after some well known Manchester bands.
However, Stan soon decided against working in physically confrontational roles and wanted to use his IT degree; he drew on his Chi Kung disciplines to focus his mind, decide a new path and achieve it. Shortly after, and with no previous experience, Stan successfully applied for a Project Management job and was hired by Seeboard Plc in Crawley in 1997. He quickly proved himself to be a highly skilled Programme and Project Manager – excellent at developing and executing complex strategies, communicating clearly with people at all levels and delivering results on time. He soon set up his own consultancy Emperor Consulting Limited and has worked with Reuters, RBS, nPower, Eurocontrol Agency, BBC and the Department of Health.
It was during work on a large project in the West Midlands in 2001 that Stan was introduced to his future business partner Dave Taylor, a highly experienced and accomplished Kung Fu Master. Already a Kung Fu Master himself, having trained for over 20 years, Stan quickly formed a friendship with Dave and the pair trained together, each learning from their different experiences and approaches to Kung Fu – with Stan bringing historic Eastern teachings and expertise in Chi Kung energies and breathing techniques, for example, Kam Ying Kung Fu and Nei Gong Internal Strength and Focus Techniques, and Dave bringing Western realism, for example, Wing Chun Dynamics and Iron Shirt Chi Kung techniques.
In 2015 Stan and Dave decided to share their unique blend of Kung Fu and Chi Kung with others and set up Masters Black – a unique service that teaches focus, mindfulness and emotional control through precise movements of the body combined with deep breathing practices. It is extremely rare for two Kung Fu Masters to teach together in this way.
The company supports individuals who are dealing with commonplace challenges including anxiety, depression and stress, but can also be adapted for those who simply want to improve technique and enhance physical wellbeing. With Stan based in London and Dave in Worcester, the business provides one-to-one coaching for individuals, as well as group training for corporate companies across the South East and the West Midlands.
Outside of Kung Fu, Stan is a keen chef and prides himself on his Chinese culinary skills – having learnt many recipes from his father who ran a Chinese restaurant for many years; Stan’s signature dish and carefully guarded secret recipe is Char Sui Pork!