Chinese Kung Fu (Martial Arts)

Chinese Kung Fu (Martial Arts)

Kung Fu (Martial Arts or Wushu) is a traditional Chinese sport which has developed over a long historical period. In order to survive the extremely hostile environment, the primitive Chinese ancestors learned some primary means of attack and defence such as leaping, tumbling and kicking. Moreover, they generally knew how to fight with weapons made from stones and wood or bare-hand fighting. This is considered to be the origin of Wushu.

The movements in Wushu include kick, boxing, wresting and seizing, which are performed by rules. Sects of Wushu are various. Generally speaking, Shaolin Sect and Wudang Sect are the two most famous sects. As the old Chinese saying goes 'In the north, Shaolin Kungfu is primarily recommended. While in the south, Wudang Kungfu is especially valued.' Both of them lay emphasis on the external practice for Jing (genuine energy), Qi (vital energy) and Shen (spirit) and internal practice for muscle, bone and skin.

Shaolin Kung Fu

Being an important part of Chinese traditional martial arts, Shaolin Kungfu is considered to be the authentic Chinese Martial Arts. Originally, it was developed from the Shaolin Temple, in the region of Song Mountain. While cultivating in the thick forest of the high mountains, monks created a set of body-building exercises by learning the postures of flying, jumping and running from birds, beasts and fish. Gradually, these body-building exercises developed into a sort of boxing through long practice and improvement, which is generally called 'Shaolin boxing'.

Shaolin Kungfu include boxing, stick art, spear art, sword art and so on. Shaolin boxing is strong and powerful. It is a combination of attack and defence thus making it practical for real fights. Stick art played an important role in wars. It can not only defeat the enemy and achieve victory, but also improve health and promote longevity. Spear is regarded as the king of the ancient weapons. Spear arts are various, including Shaolin spear, Yezhan spear, Lanmen spear and so on. Sword arts have a far-reaching influence on the Shaolin Kungfu. The vigorous sword dance brings people a wonderful aesthetic feeling.

Chinese Kung Fu (Martial Arts)

Wudang Kung Fu

Wudang Kung Fu is greatly related to the Chinese native religion - Taoism. It is said that Zhang Sanfeng, a Taoist who lived in the Song Dynasty (960-1279) created Wudang Kungfu. The Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) saw the formal popularity of Wudang Kungfu. In order to promote Wudang Taoism all over China, Emperor Yongle of the Ming Dynasty assembled 300,000 civilian workers to build 33 Taoist complexes in Mt. Wudang. It took them 13 years to finish the whole construction. Wudang Kungfu emphasizes the strengthening of bones and muscles and internal cultivation, and encourages the use of softness to conquer the unyielding. It doesn't advocate attack but at the same time it is hard to defeat.

Shadow boxing, Bare-hand fighting in six steps, Wuji boxing are all types of Wudang Kungfu. Wudang Sword is regarded as Wudang's priceless treasure. Taiji Sword, Liuhe Spear, Baihong Sword are also famous Wudang weapons.

The basic Kungfu spirit is to value martial arts while at the same time upholding virtue; this has been advocated by Kung Fu performers from generation to generation. Chinese Kung Fu are just like a knowledgeable teacher from whom people can learn a lot in order to survive in this complicated world.

Famous Wushu Actors

There are many world-famous Wushu actors such as Bruce Lee, who is regarded as the 'King of Martial Arts' as well as a great film star. Jet Li, has successfully developed many Martial Arts figures in a number of blockbusters. Jackie Chan is noted for his outstanding Wushu skills in the film industry at home and abroad. People can really marvel at and admire the charm of Chinese Wushu from their marvellous works.

Chinese Kung Fu (Martial Arts) Chinese Kung Fu (Martial Arts)

Places in Beijing to Watch Kung Fu Show

Beijing Red Theater

The most famous Chinese Martial Art show in the Beijing Red Theater tells the growth of a little monk, and is rather entertaining.

Address: 44, Xingfu Dajie, Workers' Art Palace, Chongwen District

How to get there: Take Bus 6, 8, 34, 35, 36, 41, 60, 116, 707, 957, 958 and get off at Beijing Tiyuguan (Beijing Stadium) Station

Kung Fu Kids

Address: 3F, SOLANA Vivid Town, west gate of Chaoyang Park, Chaoyang District

How to get there: take Bus 419, 852, 985 at Chaoyang Gongyuan Ximen

Laoshe Teahouse

In addition to opera, acrobatics, folk music and tea ceremony performances, you can also watch Kung Fu shows here.

Address: Building 3, Zhengyang Market, Qianmen Xidajie, Xuanwu District

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