Da Si He Dai Yi, Master Richard Yi Ho
Master Richard Yi Ho, founder of He Jia Pai, has been studying, practicing and teaching Chinese martial arts for over 40 years. In ancient China, martial arts (wu shu) was directly related to, and inseparable from the military. In fact for many historic figures of the Chinese martial arts, service in the military was an integral part of their training. Master He served in the military and was a member of the U.S. Army Airborne and 11th Special Forces. Master He distinguished himself in the military by being awarded honor graduate from the largest airborne (paratrooper) class to graduate from Ft. Benning (starting class of over 850 candidates). Master He was also nominated by the governor of Maryland to attend Officer’s Training at the Annapolis Naval Academy. Master He’s father as well as his grandfathers also served in the military, each were distinguished military officers trained in wu shu. Master He’s father, He Jie, was an officer and spokesman with the Taiwan Navy. He Jie was the youngest assistant attache with the Taiwan Navy and was a diplomat to the U.S. in the 1950’s. Master He’s paternal grandfather, He Hong Tang, was a general for the Republic of China and aide-de-camp to then President Chiang Kai Shak. He Hong Tang was a graduate of the renowned Huang Pu Military Academy and was a commander in the historic “Northern Expedition Campaign”. This campaign was used to purge the warlords of the north after the fall of the Qin dynasty. Master He’s maternal grandfather, Tan Kuo Tou, was a general for the Repubic of China who served as Chief of Staff to President Chiang Kai Shak. Tan Kuo Tou was in charge of security in Taiwan when the Republic of China relocated there. In addition to Bing Chuan (military fist), Tan Kuo Tou also practiced various forms of Qi gong.
Master He’s formal martial arts training commenced at an early age in the He family system of wu shu. This training combined both internal and external training with practices in qi gong, nei gong (internal power), wai gong (external use of energy), forms, weapons, medicine, chin na (grappling), shuai jiao (Chinese wrestling), etc.. Master He excelled in the martial arts and by early teens was a high level practitioner. To review other perspectives of the Chinese martial arts and to add other traditional forms, Master He later studied Sun Tai Ji, Wu Tai Ji, Hsing Yi and Ba Gua from Master Wang Qing, the 48 Combined Tai Ji from Sifu Carrie Wong, the White Lotus system (which included numerous styles of Chinese martial arts) from grandmaster Wong Lim, various Chinese and Japanese systems from Sifu George Ho, Tian Shan Pai from Sifu Pei. In addition, Master He has also been a top competitor in the martial arts and has taken first place in numerous kung fu and open-style tournaments in both forms and fighting.
Master He is currently a full-time practitioner of Chinese medicine and teacher of the Chinese martial arts with his wife Si Nai Gretchen He. Si Nai Gretchen has been studying and practicing Chinese martial arts since 1988, and she is also senior instructor in the He Jia Pai system of Chinese martial arts.
Through research both in the U.S. and in China, Master He is constantly developing, refining and innovating new ideas in the Chinese martial arts and in Chinese medicine. Master He also devotes much time to translating Chinese martial art and medical texts and is a craftsman of ancient Chinese weapons.