Richard Nicholls’ martial arts training began in 1974 when he studied Tae Kwon Do for a couple of years. In 1983, his Tai Ji training began as rehabilitation for injuries incurred as a result of a traffic accident. For four years Richard trained under The Australian Academy of Tai Chi learning and his path back to physical well-being was well under way. From 1988 to 1990, he had the opportunity to study under David Yuen, Chief Instructor of The Queensland Hung Gar and Tai Chi School. During this time he was hugely assisted and influenced by Ian Taggart.
1991 saw the introduction of Master Ian Lee and his Wu Zen Dao system. Master Lee is a world-renowned Tai Ji exponent/teacher and helped guide Richard to his instructor level achieved in 1997. Also under Master Lee, Shifu Richard was able to reach an Intermediate level in Shaolin Long Fist and practice a variety of weapons, notably short staff, fan, pu dao, long staff, straight sword and broadsword. These have greatly assisted his martial understanding of Tai Ji. Also in the internal styles, Shifu Richard was able to reach the level of Xing Yi Instructor before Master Lee’s return to Taiwan.
In recent years, Shifu Richard has undertaken the National Coaching Accreditation Scheme and is now recognized as a Level 1 Coach by the Australian Sports Commission. This requires meeting their stringent regulations.
For over 17 years now, Shifu Richard has volunteered his services as a tournament official for the National All Styles tournament circuit. He has achieved the rank of a Level 4 National Referee and in 2007 was awarded “Official of the Year” – no mean feat!
Shifu Richard continues to learn and teach Tai Ji and Xing Yi at The Traditional School of Chinese Martial Arts under ShiGong Jason King and still receives regular tuition from Master Lee. Shifu Richard would like to acknowledge fellow instructors Ian Taggart and Kevin The as great influences on his journey.
Shifu Richard’s bio can be downloaded here