About Paulie Zink

Students often ask Paulie Zink if he was always extremely flexible. He was not. He was stiff as a teenager. It wasn’t until he trained long and hard in Taoist Qigong and Taoist yoga that he developed his exceptional skills and flexibility.

Paulie was privately trained for ten years by a Chinese Kung fu master. On his own initiative, Paulie studied Taoist alchemy theory and observed a variety of animals. As a result, Paulie deepened his awareness of energetic alchemy. And he developed numerous yoga postures, variations of postures, movements, and meditations, thereby creating his own style he calls the Art of Yin yoga or Yin Yang yoga.

What is now commonly taught as Yin yoga is a beginner-level portion of Paulie Zink’s complete art of yoga. However, yin and yang are inseparable. Paulie never intended for his art to be taught as a single polarity. The yin aspects of his yoga should be balanced with its Taoist yang aspects.

Paulie Zink Bio
Paulie Zink

How Yin Yoga Got Started

Paulie Zink began studying Hatha yoga when he was 14 and martial arts two years later. While he was in college, he met a Kung-fu master from Hong Kong named Cho Chat Ling. Master Cho had been imparted with secret martial arts knowledge by his uncle and was obligated to pass on the legacy. He wanted to choose a proficient, worthy practitioner who could show the art to the western world. He found in Paulie the potential and the tenacity of spirit necessary to meet this aim.

After some time Master Cho chose Paulie to become his sole protege. Master Cho came to Paulie’s home and instructed him privately every day for six to seven hours. About three hours of his daily practice were devoted to flexibility training and Chi Kung. Paulie was taught the Taoist arts of yoga and Chi Kung as a foundation for his martial arts training.

Master Cho taught Paulie three distinct Kung-fu styles collectively called Tai Shing Pek Kwar (Monkey kung fu) combined into a discipline that demanded tremendous mental concentration, harsh physical exercise, and esoteric spiritual practices.

For seven years Paulie Zink continued his daily intensive level of study with his master while he simultaneously developed his own art of Yin Yang yoga. After seven years time Master Cho began to taper the frequency of his visits, although Paulie continued to train just as vigorously. By his tenth year, Master Cho declared Paulie to be his own master and his training ended.

(Photo: Paulie with his Master)

Paulie Zink
Paulie Zink Grandchampion

Paulie Zink, The Reluctant Competitor

Master Cho told Paulie he had transmitted to him in ten years time what would usually require twenty-five years or more to learn. Paulie Zink is the only Westerner to be traditionally trained in the secret knowledge of the art of Tai Shing Pek Kwar in a direct Chinese lineage from the arts’ originators. Master Cho never charged Paulie for his lessons.

Master Cho insisted Paulie compete in the martial arts arena. Paulie entered in the solo “Empty Hands” and “Weapons” divisions of approximately one hundred martial arts tournaments from local to regional to national levels. He won the Grand Championship in all of them, often in both divisions. Master Zink’s tournament career culminated with him winning the Grand Championship at the Long Beach International Karate Championships three consecutive years.

Classes With Paulie Zink In The Old Days

Master Cho obligated Paulie to teach some of the arts he had learned. So, for many years Paulie taught semi-private classes from his home. These classes were held on Thursdays and Saturdays. They started at 8:30 pm and usually lasted five to six hours. The yoga-only students stayed for the first two hours.

Students practiced in the garage on a cement floor. And for a long time, they had no heater. Numerous students came to these classes briefly or sporadically. However, Master Zink had a small group of deeply devoted students who attended his classes on a semi-weekly basis for several years.

Paulie also taught occasional workshops at Martial arts and yoga schools. Eventually, he started teaching weekly yoga classes at local schools. And later he became a traveling master teacher.

Paulie Zink School
Paulie Zink

Yin Yoga Today

As the founder of Yin yoga, Paulie Zink continues to evolve his Taoist art by adding postures and variations, movements, and insights.

Paulie’s Complete Art of Primal Yin Yoga goes way beyond the simplified, mainstream version of Yin yoga that is commonly taught.
It incorporates numerous additional postures and flow movements, along with elemental and animal energetic awareness. These deeper dimensions of the art can greatly facilitate healing and expedite growth.

Paulie Zink Credits

Paulie Zink has been inducted into three Martial Arts Halls of Fame. He has co-authored two books on Monkey Kung-fu, and starred in two series of Kung fu and Yin yoga training videos produced by Unique Publications and Panther Productions. Dozens of articles about Master Zink and his art have been published in major martial arts magazines. And he has been featured on many magazine covers.

Paulie Zink was featured in the BBC seriesJerry Hall’s Gurus”, a documentary on spiritual teachers produced by Tiger Aspect Productions, UK. (Jerry Hall is a former supermodel and was the long-time partner of Mick Jagger, with whom she has four children.)

Paulie Zink has taught Yin Yoga and medical Chi Kung at:

    • Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health, Stockbridge, MA
    • Omega Institute for Holistic Studies, Rhinebeck, NY
    • Esalen Institute, Big Sur, CA
    • Yo San University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Los Angeles, CA
    • University of California Los Angeles, International Student Center
    • Deaconess Hospital, Cancer Treatment Program, Billings, MT
    • Midwest Yoga Conference, Chicago, IL
    • Yoga Journal Conference, Lake Geneva, WI
    • Illinois Neuro-Spine Center, Rush Copley Hospital, Chicago, IL