Are You Over 50?

Austin Kung Fu & Tai Chi

Makes Life Better, After 50!

How Does It “Make Life Better”?

  • RE-ENERGIZE Your Life
  • REDUCE Stress, Tension and Anxiety
  • DECREASE Cognitive Decline
  • SUPER-CHARGE Your Attitude
  • CONNECT with New Friends

Here are just a few of our “over fifty” kung fu and t’ai chi students at Shaolin-Do. Ranging from 50 to 85, you will notice that many of them are wearing black belts, some with two or three diamonds on them!

Are you over 50 and wishing for something unique and challenging in your life? Are you over 50 and thinking that you wish you had achieved the dream of a black belt you held growing up?

It is completely possible to study kung fu or t’ai chi with us as a fifty-something year old beginner. Some of the quotes below will illustrate to you what’s important to these students about their experience.

Like all students, beginners start slowly and gradually improve in strength, flexibility, memory, balance, stamina, and the list goes on and on. And like all students, some of these people started with little or no background in fitness or with health problems they were in search of solutions to, while others were already somewhat active and fit.

What comes as a big surprise to some people is that martial arts isn’t really about learning how to fight at all, but about learning how to be the best you can be…at any age. It’s about bringing strength and balance to your life, your health, and your spirit by doing something that engages you mentally, creatively, and physically. Are you over 50 and looking for ways to make new friends and keep growing? We make great friends of all ages at Shaolin-Do too, as you can see by these smiling faces. So don’t be afraid to give it a try. Most of these students didn’t think they’d still be studying kung fu or t’ai chi five years (or more) after they joined! But they found that they were stronger and healthier than ever and still having fun…so here they are!





“I feel alive with Kung Fu!!!  I love the classes and learning Katas.   It’s something I can do forever and never tire of.”  

Lee, Kung Fu Blue Belt

“When I walked in to the north Shaolin Do school for my first class, it was one of the most important days of my life. I was looking for a great new workout and found that, plus a whole lot of really incredible people. The physical and mental workouts as well as my Shaolin Do family have been feeding my heart, soul and spirit for over 17 years. It is such an integral part of my physical and mental well-being, that I can’t imagine it not being a part of my life.”

Sifu Janice, 4th degree Black Belt

“Turning 40 was a little bit of a shock, but I thought I was ok. Aches and pains kept showing up in new places. I returned to practicing Kung Fu at Austin Shaolin-do even though I was way out of shape. Now that I’ve turned 50, I can attest to Shaolin-do does indeed make one’s life better! I’m in better shape than I’ve been in years and while my body does occasionally remind me that I am over 50, I feel more like I was 30!

Bernard, 2nd Degree Black Belt

“I’m doing things now that I couldn’t have done 10 or 15 years ago. The balance, strength and flexibility that I’ve gained in this program have been transformative.”

Peter, 3rd Degree Brown Belt 

“I started Kung Fu and Tai Chi at this school in my late 40’s and now I’m 66.  I started just for the exercise and soon realized there was so much more.  In addition to the mental and physical growth I found in learning new katas, I found a warm and welcoming place where I’ve made lifelong friends.  Something about learning katas together forges a bond.  The worries of the world drift away and you can focus on the here and now with other people who want the same.  Together you make progress.  The experience is so rewarding.  Master Joe and Master Sheryl have built a martial arts school of excellence and I feel so privileged to be part of it.  We can move our bodies and learn at all ages.  There is nothing to stop you.  Life is truly better with Austin Shaolin-Do.”

Master Lesa Walker, 5th Degree Black Belt 
“Starting at 50 years or older may feel daunting when it is actually not since you start little by little at your current physical condition with a wonderful family environment provided by Master Joe, Master Sheryl, and the rest of instructors and community. I started when I was 56 years old coming out from a surgery that left me with little activity for almost six months.  I was able to regain my strength thanks to the school and realizing that  we cannot stop the clock, but we can slow its tick and enjoy life as we age with grace and vigor through exercise. “

Jorge, 2nd Degree Black Belt

“Memory, strength, and balance are aspects of kung fu training that really help this lady enjoy life and retirement. Plus it’s really addictive – love those endorphine rushes after a great workout with friends!”

Sifu Kathy, 4th Degree Black Belt

“I started practicing Tai Chi in my 50’s. I feel healthier and more grounded than any time in my life. You are never too old and it’s never too late.”

Gayle, Yellow Sash in Tai Chi

“It’s important to stay active as an adult.  The benefits are more than just physical, but for one’s mental fitness as well.  Kung Fu not only improves my strength, flexibility and range of motion, but my balance, and learning new movements helps one to keep their mental acuity as well. 

I was interested in taking up Kung Fu prior to the lockdowns, and thought I had missed yet another window to join.  Master Joe’s online classes and morning workouts have been a bright spot to fight the isolation and to keep in shape.  The opportunity to safely practice in person on Saturday mornings helps, and provides some needed interaction as well.  The classes can meet the skill and ability of anyone, from limber kids to active young adults to us (much) older people who are just starting.

Master Joe and Master Sheryl have provided an easy (and fun) way to stay active and improve one’s fitness, weather it’s Kung Fu, Tai Chi, or a combination of the two.  It’s simple to join the activities, and the presentation of the classes and workouts are flexible enough to cope with the things that can come up.  They are both eager teachers, happy to share their knowledge and experience.”

Wayne, Kung Fu Blue Belt

“As a beginner in my late 50s, overweight, out of shape, dyslexic, and coming off medication that created memory and anxiety challenges, I was an unlikely candidate for “martial artist”. My original goal was to get my 13-year old son interested in Kung Fu, to get some exercise, and maybe lose some weight. It was difficult at first: initially I thought I was going to croak just during warmups, I was often on the wrong foot, and would routinely arrive at the end of a different kata than I started. Needless to say, no one’s star student. But I refused to give up. Nor did Master Joe, Master Sheryl, the other instructors, or my fellow students, give up on me. At age 60 I managed to achieve the 2nd degree Black Belt alongside my son, and still keep up (more or less) with the “youngsters”. I’m still not a star student (although my son became one). But I am deeply grateful for the support, encouragement, and friendships that have accompanied the excellent martial arts training. I’m in the best shape of my life. Shaolin-Do has definitely made my life better. “

David, 2nd Degree Black Belt