Sifu Jerry Battle

Sifu Jerry Battle and his Sifu Cheung Shu Pui

Sifu Jerry Battle was born and raised in the East Falls Projects of Philadelphia, PA in the 70's.  He is the only son of Jerry and Gwendolyn Battle.  Gang wars were a common problem of the urban ghettos.  Jerry became interested in learning how to defend himself, at a very young age from the bigger kids in the neighborhood.  On his sixth birthday his mother took him to see a martial arts movie starring martial arts great, Bruce Lee.  This movie had a great influence on Jerry, he knew he had to learn Kung Fu or Karate as he called it.  He recalls being bullied everyday by a kid who was much bigger and a few years older than him. Jerry remembers learning Shotokan Karate and Hapkido.  “I envisioned beating this guy during my training. Then one day after years of being beat down by this one guy, it happened.  I was on roller skates.  He knocked me down.  I called him out to fight. I stood in the grass so I wouldn’t slip on the skates and commence to beat him down.  That was the best day of my young life, I was like David beating goliath. This moment made me love the martial arts even more.”

At the age of ten he started studying Wing Chun. His Sifu suggested he should try learning a Korean art.   He started studying Tae Kwon Do at the age of 12 under Ozzie Wright in West Philadelphia.  It was during this time he realized he had an innate ability for martial arts. He trained for two years then started to learn Northern Shaolin Gung Fu at a recreation center not far from his neighborhood.  During his high school years he got into many fights, because there were many street gang members that attended his high school.  Fighting became a daily chore for him and he started enjoying it and at times showed negative traits which were in direct conflict with the martial arts discipline.  He was becoming one of the bad guys. 

Later he joined the U.S Air Force after high school.  Jerry did not enjoy his two years of military life.  Once he left the military, he became a student at Cheung’s Hung Gar Gung Fu Academy in Philadelphia’s Chinatown.  He remembers first learning and only practicing stances.  His legs would be too sore to drive.  Driving a manual transmission, both legs would shake as he pressed the break and the clutch.  It took two months before his legs adjusted to the different use of muscles during training.  For the first year Sifu Cheung did not say much to him.  If he tried to stretch he would yell "you want to stretch?  Stretch in horse stance."  It was very tough and he was very strict. Not many people lasted.  Jerry was given an opportunity to prove himself during a Lion Dance Demonstration, where performers didn’t show up, he had to do the majority of the work during the dance.  From that point on, his name was no longer “you” it was Jerry.

Sifu Jerry and Sifu Louis Diaz

As the years went by, he became one of the selected few out of Sifu’s close students that Sifu would impart historical as well as martial arts information. Although Sifu and Jerry remained close there were times when it felt as though they did not connect.  He vowed to continue the tradition as his Sifu passed on to him.

On November 9, 2010 Sifu Jerry suffered a stroke that ended his ability to do Gung Fu, but his mind is still sharp as ever and he remembers all his training and now passes his extensive knowledge onto Sifu Louis Diaz, he is his official representative

Sifu Jerry Battle Performing Five Animal Fist

Sifu Jerry Battle playing drums for Lion Dancing at the Chinese New Years Celebration In Philadelphia

Sifu Jerry Battle Performing 
  •              (Yiu Ga Dai Pah)                     Yiu Family Big Fork

Sifu Jerry Battle and his Representative Louis Diaz