Shi Yan Ming

Martial Artist
Born Feb 13, 1964

Shi Yan Ming is a 34th generation Shaolin warrior monk, teacher and actor, best known as the founder of USA Shaolin Temple. Trained at the Shaolin Temple in the People's Republic of China (PRC) since the age of five, Shi Yan Ming defected to the United States in 1992, before opening the USA Shaolin Temple in Manhattan, where he has taught hundreds of students, including numerous celebrities.… Read More

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1964 Birth Born on February 13, 1964.
1969 5 Years Old In 1969, the five-year-old Duan's Buddhist parents, still worried about his health, took him to the 1,500-year-old Shaolin Temple, the only remains of which after repeated destruction by warring dynasties and the current government were the foundation and some walls. (The temple as it is known today was reconstructed around the turn of the 21st century.) As this was in the middle of the Cultural Revolution, the familiar red and yellow robes and shaved heads were also not present among the monks, and would not be until approximately 1980, after the Cultural Revolution ended. … Read More


1980 16 Years Old In 1980, a young Jet Li arrived at the temple to shoot his feature film debut, Shaolin Temple. … Read More


1985 21 Years Old In 1985, Shi won the 65 kg (147 lb.) championship in the Xian National Sparring Competition. … Read More
1992 28 Years Old In 1992, Shi, who had won many national martial arts competitions, was chosen to be among a group of select Shaolin monks invited by the American Kung Fu Association to tour the United States, the first such tour for the Shaolin, to spread the knowledge of Shaolin Kung Fu. … Read More


1994 30 Years Old Choosing New York to be his new base of operations in order to spread the message of Buddhism and Shaolin kung fu because he saw it as the "capital of the world", Shi opened the first USA Shaolin Temple at 96 Bowery Street in Chinatown in December 1994. … Read More
1995 31 Years Old In June 1995, Shi traveled to Toronto, Canada to perform with a delegation of his brother Shaolin monks, headed by Great Master Shi Yongxin, who were sent on tour to Canada.
1999 35 Years Old 1 More Event
In 1999 he returned to China with his students to help build relations between China and the United States. … Read More


2006 42 Years Old …  In 2006 Rodale Books published Shi's own book, The Shaolin Workout: 28 Days to Transforming Your Body and Soul the Warrior's Way. … Read More
2010 46 Years Old The USA Shaolin Temple has six international satellite branches in Austria, South Africa, Trinidad, Chile, Argentina, and Mexico. In 2010 Shi and the USA Shaolin Temple purchased over of land in Middletown, Delaware County, New York, where he intends to build a new Shaolin Temple. … Read More
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