Sifu Donald Mak founded the International Wing Chun Organization (IWCO) in 1997, which today has over 100 affiliated schools located in 16 countries.
For a full bio, continue to the bottom of the page.
Lineage: Yip Man -> Chow Tze Chuen -> Donald Mak
(Continued from the top)
Sifu Mak’s birth year is 1961, a Year of Ox. He was fortunate enough to have become a student and descendent of Master Chow Tze Chuen ( 鄒子傳 ) in 1979. Master Chow was one of a handful of direct students of Grandmaster Yip Man, the teacher of the late kung fu legend, Bruce Lee.
From 1987, Sifu Mak began serving as an Instructor in Master Chow’s Kung Fu school, where he helped coach and train his Kung Fu classmates. In 1997, with his master’s encouragement and blesssing, he started his own Wing Chun school under the name, “Hong Kong Wing Chun Institute“, teaching both group and private lessons until the present time. The school’s name was later changed to “International Wing Chun Organization” in 2008 to reflect the global development of the school.
Sifu Mak’s passion for Wing Chun also led him onto a more academic path where he began2012_01_18-9919
researching the Wing Chun style, particularly its theories and history. His expertise was recognized when he was asked to write articles for the book, “Ip Man Ving Tsun 50th Anniversary,“ which received positive feedback.
Apart from many years of training and skill development in Wing Chun, Sifu Mak speaks good English and communicates clearly, both in conceptual and practical terms. As a result, he has long experience and a proven track record of teaching Western students. A select number of foreign students have already graduated under his teaching programme, and have started teaching his curriculum under the auspices of the “International Wing Chun Organization“.
However, Sifu Mak’s reputation for teaching extends far beyond Hong Kong. Since 1998, he has made a point to travel abroad annually, for about 2 – 4 weeks during his holidays, to teach and offer seminars to students all over the world. To date, he has conducted training in Singapore, UK, Russia, France, Italy, Sweden, USA, Romania, Austria, U.A.E, Iran and China, and for some overseas schools, he has visited numerous times.
In addition to teaching and training, Sifu Mak has a strong interest in raising the standards of Wing Chun and providing opportunities for students to test their skill levels. Since 2010, together with his associations in Europe, Hong Kong, and China, he organized a number of international and regional Wing Chun competitions. To keep standards uniform around the world, he designed a grading and examination system based on his leveled programme. Sifu Mak personally conducts the exams or, in certain cases, designates a qualified examiner.
Sifu Mak also recognizes the entertainment value of Wing Chun and that learning it should be fun. In 2010, he worked on the Wing Chun movie, “The Legend is Born – Ip Man“, directed by Herman Yau, as an on-site martial arts consultant.
Sifu Mak holds an MBA degree from USA (1989) and currently holds the following official titles:
2016 – United States Martial Arts Association – Regular Life Member
2012 – Chinese Wushu Association – Recognized Wushu (Wing Chun martial arts) Duan System – Examiner
2012 – Chinese Wushu Association – Recognized Wushu (Wing Chun martial arts) Duan System – Instructor
2010 – World Wing Chun Union – Recognized Competition Referee
2009 – World Wing Chun Union – Vice Chairman
2009 – Hong Kong Wing Chun Union – Vice Chairman
2008 – United States Martial Arts Association – 8th Dan (Master) – Wing Chun Kung Fu
2008 – Chinese Wushu Association – 7th Duan of Chinese Wushu Duan Wei System
2007 – Chartered Institute of Environmental Health, U.K – Professional Trainer Certificate
2007 – Occupational Safety & Health Council – Training Certificate in Occupational Safety Management
2006 – Hong Kong Muay Thai Association – Recognized Referee and Judge
2005 – Hong Kong Chinese Martial Arts Association Limited, Permanent Member
2005 – World Ving Tsun Athletic Association, Founding Member
2004 – Ving Tsun Athletic Association, Recognized Instructor
2004 – World Organization of Wu Shu Kung-fu Masters, Eight Level Master
2001 – Master Chow Tze Chuen of Wing Chun Chuen Kwoon, Recognized Sifu
1991 – Ving Tsun Athletic Association, Permanent Member
The passion of Sifu Mak in Wing Chun has also led him onto a more academic path of researching on the Wing Chun Style, regarding its theories and history. This necessitates his frequent visit into China from the period between 1990 and 2008 to look up and discuss with old masters who are still alive and practising the different lineages and branches of the style. This exercise has brought him much less known knowledge of Wing Chun, both technically and historically, as well as many experienced Wing Chun practitioners in China as friends and teachers.