Dojo & Instructors

Moon Dragon Dojo (formerly Tuyê’t Tan Dojo*) has been sharing Cuong Nhu Oriental Martial Arts with adults and kids for over 25 years in Berkeley. Our dojo is led by Master Allyson Appen who has been teaching Cuong Nhu for over 34 years. Our instructors (mostly women) are dedicated to teaching martial in an open and positive way, and find joy and satisfaction from helping our students learn and grow as martial artists and as people.

We often talk of the dojo as our family, and if you choose to train here, you’ll see why after a short time. We support each other both in and out of the dojo with a spirit that starts from our workouts together, and grows through our friendships over the years.

* We changed our name because no one can pronounce “Tuyê’t Tan” correctly, and we were updating the website.

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Instructors

Allyson AppenMaster Allyson Appen, Head Instructor, Shichidan, seventh degree black belt
Teaching and training for over 35 years in Cuong Nhu, Master Allyson has complemented her Cuong Nhu expertise with six years of aikido and three years of judo, she is now concentrating on developing her skills in internal arts: taiji and qigong. Allyson stresses alignment and technique over strength, and believes in the power of a positive attitude — that and I love seeing the surprise and delight in a student’s face when they accomplish something they did not think possible. It’s the best!
— Master Allyson
classes should be really fun. She served as president of the Cuong Nhu Board of Directors as well as for years as regional representative. Selected as “Martial Artist of the Year” in 2000 by the Pacific Association of Women Martial Artists (PAWMA), Allyson has also served on the PAWMA board of directors. She was inducted into the Association of Women Martial Arts Instructors (AWMAI) Hall of Fame in 2015.

rb01Rosanne Boudreau, Nidan, second degree black belt
Sensei Rosanne has been teaching and training in Cuong Nhu for thirteen years and has enriched her training with four years of judo. Rosanne initially started Cuong Nhu as a way to physically challenge herself and get in shape. She quickly became hooked by the fun classes, the supportive community of teachers and classmates and the benefits to fitness of mind, body, and spirit. Rosanne loves teaching and training and continues to learn and grow with her dojo mates. Confucius:
I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand.
Sensei Rosanne served for three years on the Pacific Association of Women Martial Artists (PAWMA) Board of Directors and was elected president of the board for the year 2012. She is currently the Cuong Nhu Regional Representative for the Western Region.

ayAlyssandra Yochelson, Shodan, first degree black belt
Alyssandra started martial arts in 2007 when she was 15 years old. Now working her way through young adulthood she’s still practicing and committing herself to the study of Cuong Nhu. She passed her black belt test May of 2013 and earned her first red stripe in the summer of 2014. Her plans for the future include someday starting her own dojo, but that won’t be until she finishes college at least. Her strengths within the style itself would be the performance of the katas (pre-arranged combat technique forms, similar to steps in a dance) but she loves grappling and self-defense as well. She’s very proud that she placed 1st and 2nd at the Berkeley Cuong Nhu Kata tournament in 2014. Don’t ever tell me you “can’t,” just say “I can’t yet.” Doubting yourself is the surest way to fail.
— Sensei Alyssandra
She loves coming to class and working hard as a way to de-stress from her life — it’s like magic as a good solid workout will make any anxiety simply vanish like smoke in the evening sky. She enjoys teaching classes even though teaching “grown-ups” is still mildly intimidating; but she’ll never back down from the challenge or the chance to teach anyone something new and enjoyable. She complements her Cuong Nhu training with 7 years of gymnastics and a year of cheerleading. She also continues to dance on a regular basis, applying the grace and fluidity into her martial arts training.

Jennifer Argle, black belt
In early 2008 Sensei Jennifer began training at Moon Dragon (then known as Tuyê’t Tan) dojo as part of her recuperation from a stroke in the summer of 2006. She was drawn to the eclecticism of Cuong Nhu that allows each student to develop creatively and she is grateful to have instructors who encouraged her throughout the years. Part of growing as a Black Belt is learning to teach, which is my main focus now.
— Sensei Jennifer
In May 2014, she received her Black Belt. Sensei Jennifer has regularly attended the Cuong Nhu national and west coast training camps as well as other martial arts seminars. She has also complemented her Cuong Nhu training with a year of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.

Corie Ralston, black belt
Sensei Corie Ralston is thrilled to be teaching and “giving back” to the dojo that has nurtured her training and where she has made many good friends over the years. She loves the variety in the Cuong Nhu curriculum — the traditional kicking and punching of the hard styles, the blending techniques of the soft styles, the throwing and falling of judo — and is especially interested in teaching the practical self-defense applications of each. She welcomes all interested students of all ages and abilities to her classes!

 

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