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Taiji - a little about the Instructor

Joe Harte began training martial arts in 1975, then in the early 90's found himself inexorably drawn to Taiji.

He is a long time student of Patrick Kelly in the tradition of Master Huang Sheng Shyan.

With 20 years of intensive Taiji training he now runs the Northern School of Taiji in Co. Durham, Northeast England - Concentrated Taiji classes for those who wish to learn deeply.


- Senior Instructor under Patrick Kelly
- Senior Instructor under Dan Russell
- Advanced Instructor Tai Chi Union GB
- First Aid Qualified

whatever the words only your own innate intelligence can determine if the training is right for you. The journey will have to be yours, come and see for yourself.



Starting out in London


I grew up in inner city London and began martial art training at the age of 14 at a local Judo club.
Then in 1977 at the age of 16 a chance meeting lead me to the Shaolin Kung Fu Association run by chief instructor Joe Holmes.
I was to spend the next 10 years training under Joe Holmes and the SKFA It was a fantastic apprenticeship!

On reflection it was the often quoted training of “Mind and Body" that had drawn me to the martial arts in the first place. I had experimented with meditation as a teenager and now this interest resurfaced pulling at me more strongly. Zen in the Art of Archery by Eugene Herrigel caught my attention as well as books on Sport Psychology and the like. I experimented for myself but it was clear I needed guidance.

My Kung Fu teacher was an honest man and when I asked he said he knew little of these things so could not help. For that and the wonderful generosity in the things he taught so well I am forever grateful - It was time to move on, but we are still in touch.

I joined a Jujitsu club run by Prof. Dick Morris. The dojo etiquette was harsh, like stepping back 200 years into feudal Japan. It did include some meditation and I continued for a few years before moving to the north of England.



A young Joe Harte (nice beard!)
with Joe Holmes - My Kung Fu Teacher
showing a nice jumping kick!

Finding Taiji


I sought out Dan Russell of the Northern School of Tai Chi Chuan in Carlisle in the early 90’s. With many years of meditation and martial arts training at the core his training methods were refreshingly different and I was welcomed into the Taiji family with open arms enjoying the eclectic heady mix of Taiji, Meditation, shamanism, Trance and Hypnotherapy that the school offered.

After a few years Dan found the Taiji teacher he had been looking for to deepen his own understanding and so we began training in Master Huang Sheng Shyan's methods with Patrick A Kelly.

As part of the transition to the then new methods I was hugely fortunate to be invited to attend the international seminars that gather Patrick's senior students from all over Europe and beyond.

Patrick A Kelly, our greatly respected guide in Master Huang's teachings, spent some 20 years studying intensively with Master Huang Sheng Shyan. He was the only westerner to be admitted to Master Huang’s inner school.
Patrick systematized Huang's teachings and now with many years of dedicated personal practice the teaching evolves as he continues to offer direct guidance to the instructors of the Northern School of TaijiQuan and others throughout Europe and the rest of the world. He has written several books - Highly recommended.

Relax, Deep Mind.
Spiritual Reality (of Life).
Infinite Dao.

See Books page. They are available through me at the school or on line at www.patrickkellytaiji.com – see links page.


It goes without saying – I am deeply indebted to my teachers and the traditions of their own teachers, for their openness of teaching and kindness.
Whether being there as a mirror to my inadequacies or just ‘being’ - deep and still, so that I may benefit from their inexorable commitment to their individual paths - these extraordinary human beings continue to help shape the person I am.

These Days....

Joe Harte teaches Taiji classes in County Durham. He is a long time student of Patrick Kelly and regular attendee of the International seminars.


See New Starters page for details on how to join




Patrick A Kelly & Joe Harte

Tea anyone?

Joe Harte & Dan Russell MA having a cup of tea

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