Sifu Mario Lopez
In the year of the Dragon, 1964, Mario Lopez was born. He was the son of Spanish parents living in Germany, and he was a very active child.
During the 1970’s, Mario’s life was changed forever after learning about the famous actor and martial arts legend, Bruce Lee. Like many people at that time, Mario wanted to dedicate his life to learning Bruce Lee’s art of Jeet Kune Do (JKD), however there were no schools where Mario could learn as the art was still very much in its infancy. Schools able to teach it, in fact, did not exist in Germany, but this did not deter Mario from searching for a place to begin training. Through his dedication to find a school, Mario learned that Jeet Kune Do’s main techniques came of the art of Wing Chun. On April 8, 1980, Mario began his first lesson in Wing Chun and it was there that Mario said, “One day, I’m going to be a Wing Chun teacher.”
In September of 1995, Mario’s first school opened five months after meeting Seef Randy Williams. It was a tiny school (only 35 square meters), but it was the beginning of his dream to teach Wing Chun on a fulltime basis. Over the years, Mario’s dedication to this dream led him to change locations. As his student population grew, so too did his classroom, and in 1999 his dream to teach Wing Chun fulltime finally came to pass. Today, Mario is now the chief Sifu of a 470 square meter Martial Arts Academy in Duisburg, Germany and he is the first student of CRCA to complete the Wing Chun system.
Mario’s Ranking Career in CRCA Wing Chun:
- Yellow Belt, 1997 (Germany)
- Red Belt, 1998 (Germany)
- Green Belt, 2007 (UK)
- Brown Belt, 2009 (Germany)
- Black Belt I, 2010 (Romania)
- Black Belt II, 2011 (Romania)
- Black Belt III, 2012 (Mexico)
After Mario completed the final test for his third degree black belt in CRCA Wing Chun, Seef made an announcement throughout the CRCA organization: “Mario is the first in line.” The announcement declared that Mario’s dedication, commitment, and completion of CRCA instruction made him the only student eligible to succeed the Seef as the head of CRCA. On February 21, 2016, Seef Randy Williams gave Mario his jade ring, symbolizing the transfer in leadership of CRCA to Mario, saying “May the force be with you. CRCA is now yours.”
Mario’s vision and mission is to let Close Range Combat Academy grow up as an organization with a team of individuals dedicated to expanding the school’s influence, visibility, and access.
Already, Mario has increased these efforts thanks to today’s technology, using Facebook to communicate with CRCA Instructors all over the world, creating a YouTube channel so that member-students can practice at home, and opening an official Facebook page to inform CRCA members and friends about CRCA news.
As you can see, CRCA now has an official website, accessible in six different languages, where every CRCA School, member, Barn Member, and private student can access instruction documents and video clips for their training. Mario has also developed a universal testing standard for all instructors, which you can find under the header: Ranking.
Sifu Mario Lopez is dedicated to promoting every single CRCA school around the world.
If there is something you like with regards to CRCA, please let us know. For question and/or concerns, please contact Mario: firstname.lastname@example.org