Nam Yang Kung Fu Retreat

Pai, Thailand

Nam Yang Kung Fu Retreat is a residential martial arts training, offering Kung Fu for combat and self-defense and Chi kung and meditation for health.

Training Camps 11

Limited availability
1 person currently interested

Good

Based on 2 reviews

4 Months Internal Kung Fu Instructor Training in Pai, Thailand

January 20-May 22 | May 5-September 4, 2018

Speaks English

from US$5,398

Good 7.7/10

Based on 2 reviews
from US$5,398
Price for:

123 days / 122 nights

Good 7.7/10

Based on 2 reviews

Speaks English

from US$1,350

Good 7.7/10

Based on 2 reviews
from US$1,350
Price for:

30 days / 29 nights

Good 7.7/10

Based on 2 reviews

Speaks English

from US$718

Good 7.7/10

Based on 2 reviews
from US$718
Price for:

15 days / 14 nights

Good 7.7/10

Based on 2 reviews
Limited availability
3 people currently interested

Good

Based on 2 reviews

22 Days Qi Gong Instructor Training in Pai, Thailand

January 20-February 10 | May 5-26, 2018

Speaks English

from US$1,498

Good 7.7/10

Based on 2 reviews
from US$1,498
Price for:

22 days / 21 nights

Good 7.7/10

Based on 2 reviews

Speaks English

from US$399

Good 7.7/10

Based on 2 reviews
from US$399
Price for:

8 days / 7 nights

Good 7.7/10

Based on 2 reviews
Limited availability

Good

Based on 2 reviews

Speaks English

from US$199

Good 7.7/10

Based on 2 reviews
from US$199
Price for:

3 days / 2 nights

Good 7.7/10

Based on 2 reviews
Limited availability
1 person currently interested

Good

Based on 2 reviews

6 Months Kung Fu Apprentice Instructor Training in Pai, Thailand

January 20-July 18 | May 5-October 31, 2018

Speaks English

from US$7,500

Good 7.7/10

Based on 2 reviews
from US$7,500
Price for:

180 days / 179 nights

Good 7.7/10

Based on 2 reviews

Good

Based on 2 reviews

Speaks English

from US$270

Good 7.7/10

Based on 2 reviews
from US$270
Price for:

5 days / 4 nights

Good 7.7/10

Based on 2 reviews

Good

Based on 2 reviews

Speaks English

from US$7,500

Good 7.7/10

Based on 2 reviews
from US$7,500
Price for:

180 days / 179 nights

Good 7.7/10

Based on 2 reviews

Good

Based on 2 reviews

Speaks English

from US$14,000

Good 7.7/10

Based on 2 reviews
from US$14,000
Price for:

366 days / 365 nights

Good 7.7/10

Based on 2 reviews

Speaks English

from US$3,750

Good 7.7/10

Based on 2 reviews
from US$3,750
Price for:

91 days / 90 nights

Good 7.7/10

Based on 2 reviews

Instructors 5

Master Iain Armstrong

Master Iain is a Kung Fu philosopher and author with 36 years of living Kung Fu. Trained personally by Grand Master Tan Soh Tin in Singapore, he’s a two-time world champion and veteran of real street battles. Famous for his high-quality Kung Fu teaching, his instructional films and magazine articles, and for his demonstrations of Iron Shirt Chi Kung, Master Iain is a mine of information but retains a very practical, down to earth, and realistic approach. Most people who meet him are struck by his air of calm, patience, and wisdom.

Marion Hofer

Marion is very serious about her martial arts. She has experience in BJJ, Muay Thai, and kickboxing, but found her true passion in Kung Fu. She is also a certified yoga teacher and horse riding instructor. Marion loves sharing her Kung Fu with her students, who find her very thorough, attentive, and methodical. Hailing from Switzerland, she speaks French and German, as well as English.

Dave Bevan

Dave's initial success in Kung Fu drew from his experience as a karate teacher and a strong determination to constantly work hard to improve. He has a background in personal training and specializes in strength against body exercises. Dave became attracted to the Kung Fu retreat as he wanted to get away from modern commercial martial arts and commit his life to the study of genuine Kung Fu. He further wants to explore the spiritual aspects of traditional Chinese martial arts and its associated culture. Dave looks after the students at the Retreat as well as teaching.

Andrew Nummey

More than eight years of teaching experience has made Andrew a very patient, clear instructor. Not only that, Andrew has a good eye for detail and a calming nature about him. His favorite aspect of teaching is helping others achieve their goals of self-improvement and seeing their progress. The way that all aspects of Kung Fu link together as a martial art and in life is what fascinates him most about it. Andrew joined the Kung Fu retreat in 2015, before which he was a teacher of English as a foreign language and a Shotokan karate practitioner.

Michael Worthman

Michael is an enthusiastic teacher whilst at the same time maintaining a very relaxed attitude. He first came to the Kung Fu Retreat in 2015 and loved what he found so much that he returned home and worked hard until he had saved enough money to return and join the instructor training program. He intends in the future to open his own Kung Fu school. Although he has lived most of his life in the US, Michael is originally from Guatemala and speaks Spanish as well as English.

Reviews 2

  • Andrew W. Australia

    BookMartialArts website

    Nam Yang Kung Fu Retreat in Pai, Thailand, was a fantastic experience. I attended the Retreat for two weeks with the intention of learning more Kung Fu, new meditation practices and 'getting out of the rat race and slowing down'. Did I achieve this at Nam Yang? Yes. Master Iain is very experienced and freely shared his knowledge and understanding of Kung Fu. Whilst Master Iain does not lead all the classes, other trainers or student instructors take most classes. The daily schedule is broken up into training periods: try to have a decent level of fitness if you can before you attend as it an be up to eight hours of training per day. A beginner, or 'unfit' person would manage, but you will get more out of the training with an increased level of fitness. The accommodation is basic (as cited), I would recommend a private room if your budget permits. The meals are mostly vegetarian dishes with rice. If you're a meat eater, or usually consume more protein, consider a supplement or taking in protein powder/bars. Town is a short scooter ride away or twenty minute walk for coffee, beer or an alternative meal. The people I met were from all corners of the globe and truly amazing people. Check out their website and consider calling Master Iain or Dave to discuss your training needs/requirements and go from there.

Testimonials 13

  • Zander S

    TripAdvisor website

    We were only able to join Nam Yang for 2 days, and it was 100% worth it. The classes were well-taught, we received personalized attention from all of the instructors, and learned an incredible amount in just two days. If you able to join for at least a week, I would highly recommend doing so, but even a day or two will forever change your perspective on kung fu, martial arts, and the way the human body moves. Thanks you to all of our instructors!

  • Richard Outhwaite Singapore

    TripAdvisor website

    We randomly decided to spend a few days at Nam Yang retreat, having had no previous martial arts experience.

    The classes were excellent, a nice mix of physical training, fighting and weapon techniques with some chi gong, stretching and meditation. The classes were suitable for people of all fitness levels and martial arts experience.

    Food is delicious and very healthy, a lot of it grown on the retreat too.

    Having never seen any Kung Fu in real life, Master Ian is truly inspiring. Amazing technique, flexibility and all round wise Zen master!

    We booked to come back and spend at least 2 weeks here after. Something different that you won't regret!

  • a traveler Australia

    TripAdvisor website

    I had no martial arts experience and stayed at Nam Yang for 2 weeks in February 2017. I had a private room which was basic yet comfortable and the food was extremely nutritious, low fat and filling with a clear display of freshness and taste.

    I am 41 years old, overweight and have not been overly active for the past 10 years as my employment has become more managerial as apposed to physical aswell as wrong diet and lifestyle choices.

    Throughout the 2 weeks I felt more energetic, flexible, stronger both physically and mentally as each day went by. Over the 2 weeks I lost 7kgs and gained muscle and flexibility.

    The training was interesting and could be as demanding as each individual could handle fitness wise. In saying this I would recommend Nam Yang to anybody regardless of physical ability or age to be of benefit to both body and mind.

    The instructors were at different levels but all we're professional and displayed 100% dedication, patience and skill in their delivery of all lessons, training and knowledge to all students.

    Overall Nam Yang is a professional outfit and is a true credit to Master Ian for his knowledge, motivation, training procedures and the foresight for setting up Nam Yang Kung Fu Retreat in such a beautiful and appropriate location.

    The only mistake I made was not staying longer, but plan on returning sooner rather than later as the experiences I received there we're both memorable and life changing.

  • Fernando Barata Russo

    Nam Yang Kung Fu Retreat Facebook page

    My wife and I spent almost a month at the retreat. An amazing experience. Highly recommended even if you are a complete beginner like us.

  • John-Michael Sookias United Kingdom

    Nam Yang Kung Fu Retreat Facebook page

    There was a time when Thailand would spring to mind adventure and spiritual discovery. Now, you’re more likely to be flooded with images of 18 year olds face down in their own sick at a full moon party or sunburned families taking full glutinous value out of their all inclusive packages in their beach front resort. Sadly, the mystery of the raw Thai islands are long gone. Don’t fret, what the South of Thailand lacks, the North of Thailand makes up in abundance. So where does one head when in search of said spiritual discover and adventure? Nam Yang Kung Fu Retreat in Pai.

    When we were searching for an escape from the relentless pace of professional life in London we were attracted to the selling points of the retreat; stay in bamboo huts on a hilltop retreat in the middle of jungle mountain town, eat homemade Thai food all day, clear the head with some meditation and kung fu, then go explore the obscene amount of waterfalls and jungle trails nearby. Sold.

    Nam Yang was everything we wanted. In fact, it actually caters for anyone looking to get some rest or detox all the way to aspiring Kung Fu masters. We met people stay for a week and some that had been there for 6 months. We could have stayed that long too if we didn’t have life calling us back. You wake up at the crack of dawn with Qi Gung/Thai Chi and meditation overlooking the rolling hills of Northen Thailand. After a tea break you crack on with a bit of kung fu before breakfast is ready made by the lovely thai cooks. After a little break you get back down to the practice area for some more kung fu, sparring and even some weapons training. On some days they might squeeze in a third session. Doing this all day everyday apart from Saturday and Wednesday gets you feeling something. You feel a whole new link between body and mind. It a feeling that doesn’t really come naturally to Westerners. You manage your thoughts better. See things within that you never allowed yourself the time to do. You just generally feel better physically and mentally. Its a holiday that you don’t need a day to recover from when before you get to work. So next time you need a holiday, look for relaxation here instead of the usual booze-fueled rager (although they are fun once in a while).

  • Bryan Flowers Thailand

    Nam Yang Kung Fu Retreat Facebook page

    Excellent place! I will be back. It was a great introduction to kung fu.

  • Channy Wild

    Nam Yang Kung Fu Retreat Facebook page

    Great instructors, had so much fun, met lots of lovely people, looking forward to doing a proper 6 months at Shaolin in the future

  • Beko Kaygee United Kingdom

    Nam Yang Kung Fu Retreat Facebook page

    A must for anyone interested in Martial Arts, Exercise, Health & Wellbeing!!!

  • a traveler New York, USA

    TripAdvisor website

    I finally visited the Nam Yang Kung Fu Retreat in Pai, Thailand in February 2016 (just last month) after almost a year of research and online exchanges with Master Iain Armstrong, Chief Instructor and head manager of the Retreat. There are a lot of critical minds in the traditional martial arts community, and some might doubt that an institution like this can truly offer as much as it appears to claim. What I experienced at the Retreat has turned out to be one of those rare cases in life where something that seemed too good to be true, not only wasn’t, but actually exceeded expectations.

    The programs available at the Retreat are truly comprehensive, with something to offer everyone - and for longer term students in particular, an obviously very well rounded martial training. As an on-and-off student and amateur researcher of traditional Chinese martial arts and energetic/meditative practices for over 15 years, I can say the arts taught here are highly traditional in the core curriculum, with authentic lineages to Fujian and Hokkien styles passed in family and master-disciple lines from legendary southern Shaolin sources.

    Modern reconstructed acrobatic forms of “Wu Shu Kung Fu”, with superfluous dramatic movements, are not what is taught here, but profound and practical traditional Chinese Kung Fu. The styles taught here are actually famous for their influence on later and more wide spread systems, but are themselves actually much harder to find, and rarely taught in as complete a form as found here. At the same time, every effort is made to round out the overall training with principles and practices based on hatha yoga, PT, and practical self defense disciplines.

    A stay of even one week here will be potentially life transforming - it’s not only a place for those seriously interested in martial arts and inspired to pursue a potential long term, rigorous training (although indeed it is that!), but also very much for even the merely curious who are willing to absorb some simple yet profound practices leading down the path of holistic wellness offered by traditional Chinese energetic work. Traditional Chi Kung offers, for example, many of the benefits of yoga without the sometimes intimidating demands the latter sometimes seems to present to those who have been less flexible or active.

    The basic Chi Gung sequence taught here is in broad strokes reminiscent of more well known sets such as “Eight Pieces of Brocade”, but slightly more complex and developed for specific progressive areas of focus. It can be learned by anyone of any age or level of fitness, yet is still powerfully invigorating for athletes and experienced people. Persistence in practice afterwards seems likely to yield surprisingly real health benefits.

    The facilities and layout of the retreat reflect practicality, natural beauty, good “feng shui”, and a transcendentally contemplative aesthetic, all at once. This attention to detail is all-encompassing without being heavy-handed, and is uplifting and calming in its effects on the spirit. I don’t know what originally motivated the choice of Pai in northern Thailand for the location, but it seems to have been a stroke of genius.

    A more perfect setting cannot be imagined, and the town and valley of Pai are a wonderful gateway for the traveler to experience the natural serenity and cultural richness of the region, and beyond that, much of Southeast Asia - and it is just a fun place to be! And I would encourage anyone passing through Pai, even and especially those with no experience with martial art, to look into the benefits to mind and body of a stay here - even if you are just curious! There is nothing pressured about the experience - one of the many things that makes the atmosphere here so special.

    Above all, I have to give my respect to Master Iain Armstrong, not only for executing the vision that has made this place a reality, but for setting the tone of the Retreat as a place of wholesomeness and personal development with his calm, grounded energy and patient, attentive (yet not in any way intrusive) style of instruction. The Nam Yang Kung Fu retreat is a treasure for all who value these traditional arts, and for any thoughtful travelers through Northern Thailand whose path goes this way.

  • Monika Muse Lithuania

    TripAdvisor website

    Very harmonic, peaceful place to get in tune with yourself and your environment. Perfect combination of fight techniques, physical exercises, meditation, discovery of Chi energy, and delicious and powerful food.

    Kung Fu is more than martial art, even a bit more than a life style and master Ian and his team are more than willing to share it with you. I never imagined that I could get so passionate about something. Definitely will be back for a longer stay. Discovery of a lifetime. Thank you Nam Yang team!

  • Tsahi

    TripAdvisor website

    This was a bit weird. Not your ordinary attraction. I had no experience in martial arts. We did one class and it was great. I really recommend to do more if you have time.

  • a traveler Amsterdam

    TripAdvisor website

    My best experience in Pai. As a personal trainer and nutritional coach, I learned a lot of posture and balance movements for better breathing and stability. All the trainers and students are warm and welcoming. Thanks again!

  • Andreas Fabricius

    Nam Yang Kung Fu Retreat Facebook page

    The month I stayed in Pai was a milestone on my way to myself. It was unique in terms of professional training combined with the right spirit and hospitality. Thanks to Master Iain and his team to give me the privilege to be with them.

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