Sifu Joel Bell
Sifu Joel Bell is the Instructor of the
Middlesex Wing Chun Kuen branch of the Midlands Wing Chun Kuen Association (UK)
run by his teacher Sifu Rawcliffe (the senior western student and
representative of Grandmaster Ip Chun).
Sifu Joel Bell began his training in Wing Chun
in 1998 at the Solihull branch of Midlands Wing Chun Kuen, under Sifu Shaun
Rawcliffe. Having no previous martial arts experience, it was the philosophical
side which drew him to begin practicing.
Hooked from the first lesson, Joel began
practicing with fellow students outside the club and, under the guidance of his
Sifu and senior kung-fu brothers progressed through the system, finding that
one's understanding of Wing Chun is never complete. To this day he still
strives to maintain his 'beginners' mind' in training and continually goes back
to polish the basic tools, within which the higher levels of the art can be
As a professional teacher and lecturer, Joel
has always been fascinated by how Wing Chun is passed on. This lead him to
research and compare Western and Eastern methods of teaching, finding striking
similarities in the methods used for directness of transmission, in the
teaching of Jazz music and Martial Arts.
As a musician and improvisation specialist, he
has also found many parallels in the music world. Preparing to react
appropriately to unknown events in an unknowable situation is the essence of
both the improvising musician and self-defence. A jazz musician and martial
artist conceptually practice their art the same way, honing their insticts and
polishing the tools of their craft.
Sifu Joel Bell now teaches Wing Chun in
Middlesex as the Middlesex Wing Chun Kuen (a representative branch of Sifu
Rawcliffe's Midlands Wing Chun Kuen Association).
In keeping with the philosophy of the Midlands
Wing Chun Kuen the Middlesex school will be kept reasonably small and
family-like, representing Sifu Rawcliffe, the Midlands Wing Chun Kuen and
thereby Grandmaster Ip Chun.