3. CHIN NA
  14. TAN TUI
    1. BOH & MAH

Praying Mantis

The traditions of the Chow Gar and Kwong Sai Jook Lum branches each maintain that their respective founders Chow Ah-Nam and Som Dot created their styles after witnessing a praying mantis fight and defeat a bird. Such inspiration is a recurring motif in the Chinese martial arts and can be found in the legends of Northern Praying Mantis, both White Crane styles, T'ai Chi Ch'üan, and Wing Chun.

However, the traditions of the Chu family branch contend that the name "Southern Praying Mantis" was chosen to conceal from Qing forces its political affiliations by pretending that this esoteric style of Ming loyalists was in fact a regional variant of the popular and widespread Praying Mantis style from.

Northern Praying Mantis ( literally "praying mantis fist") is a style of Chinese martial arts, sometimes called Shandong Praying Mantis after its province of origin. It was created by Wang Lang and was named after the praying mantis, an insect, the aggressiveness of which inspired the style. One Mantis legend places the creation of the style in the Song Dynasty when Wang Lang was supposedly one of 18 masters gathered by the Abbot Fu Ju , a legendary persona of the historical Abbot Fu Yu (1203-1275), to improve Shaolin martial arts. However, most legends place Wang Lang in the late Ming Dynasty.

The mantis is a long and narrow predatory insect. While heavily armoured, it is not built to withstand forces from perpendicular directions. Consequently, its fighting style involves the use of whip-like/circular motions to deflect direct attacks, which it follows up with precise attacks to the opponent's vital spots. These traits have been subsumed into the Northern Praying Mantis style, under the rubric of "removing something" (blocking to create a gap) and "adding something" (rapid attack).

One of the most distinctive features of Northern Praying Mantis is the "praying mantis hook" a hook made of one to three fingers directing force in a whip-like manner. The hook may be used to divert force (blocking) or to attack critical spots (eyes or acupuncture points). These are particularly useful in combination, for example using the force imparted from a block to power an attack. So if the enemy punches with the right hand, a Northern Praying Mantis practitioner might hook outwards with the left hand (shifting the body to the left) and use the turning force to attack the enemy's neck with a right hook. Alternately, he/she might divert downwards with the left hook and rebound with the left wrist stump to jaw/nose/throat.

Northern Praying Mantis is especially famous for its speed and continuous attacks. Another prominent feature of the style is its complex footwork, borrowed from Monkey Kung Fu.


There are many legends surrounding the creation of Northern Praying Mantis boxing. One legend attributes the creation of Mantis fist to the Song Dynasty when Abbot Fu Ju, a legendary persona of the historical Abbot Fu Yu (1203-1275), supposedly invited Wang Lang and seventeen other masters to come and improve the martial arts of Shaolin. The Abbot recorded all of the techniques in a manual called the Mishou ("Secret Hands") and later passed it onto the Taoist priest Shen Xiao. This manual supposedly disappeared until the Qianlong reign era when it was published under the name "Arhat exercising merit short strike illustrated manuscript". Some sources place the folk manuscript's publication on the "sixteenth day of the third month of the spring of 1794". The manual records Wang Lang "absorbed and equalized all previous techniques" learned from the 17 other masters.

A full one third of the masters listed all come from fictional novels. Yan Qing and Lin Chong come from the Water Margin and Emperor Taizu, Han Tong, Zhang En and Huai De come from the Fei Long Quan Zhuan ( “The Complete Flying Dragon Biography”), which was published prior to the aforementioned manual.

Another legend connected to the Song Dynasty states Wang Lang participated in a Lei tai contest in the capital city of Kaifeng and was defeated by General Han Tong the founder of Tongbeiquan. After leaving the fighting arena, he saw a brave praying mantis attacking the wheels of oncoming carts with its "broadsword-like" arms, Mantis fist was born shortly thereafter. However, most legends place Wang Ming living in the late Ming Dynasty.

Connection with General Yue Fei

The "Four Generals of Zhongxing" painted by Liu Songnian during the Southern Song Dynasty. Yue Fei is the second person from the left. It is believed to be the "truest portrait of Yue in all extant materials."

As previously stated, the Water Margin bandits Lin Chong and Yan Qing, the adopted of Lu Junyi, are said to be part of the 18 master supposedly invited to Shaolin by the legendary Abbot Fuju. According to the folklore biography of Song Dynasty General Yue Fei, Lin and Lu were former students of Zhou Tong, the general’s military arts teacher. One martial legend states Zhou learned Chuojiao boxing from its originator Deng Liang and then passed it onto Yue Fei. Chuojiao is also known as the "Water Margin Outlaw style" and "Mandarin Duck Leg" In the Water Margin's twenty-ninth chapter, entitled "Wu Song, Drunk, Beats Jiang the Gate Guard Giant", it mentions Wu Song, another of Zhou's fictional students, using the "Jade Circle-Steps with Duck and Drake feet". Lin Chong is listed above as being a master of "Mandarin ducks kicking technique".

Lineage Mantis Master Yuen Man Kai openly claims Zhou taught Lin and Lu the "same school" of martial arts that was later combined with the aforementioned seventeen other schools to create Mantis fist. However, he believes Mantis fist was created during the Ming Dynasty, and was therefore influenced by these eighteen schools from the Song. He also says Lu Junyi taught Yan Qing the same martial arts as he learned from Zhou. Master Yuen further comments Zhou later taught Yue the same school and that Yue was the originator of the mantis move "Black Tiger Steeling[sic] Heart".


Widespread styles

There are several styles of Northern Praying Mantis, the most famous of which are:
Seven Star Praying Mantis Boxing. This style is the original form of praying mantis kung fu and is widespread in the Shandong Province and surrounding areas. Luo Guangyu is famous for having passed down this style to Hong Kong and other parts of Southern China, where it is still practiced today. Seven Star is considered by many as the 'hardest' of the Praying Mantis styles, however it still utilizes soft-hard principles and is classified as a soft-hard style.

Plum Blossom Praying Mantis Boxing. One of the oldest among all Northern Parying Mantis styles, it is widespread in Shandong Province, Jilin, Liaoning and South Korea. It traces its lineage directly from Li Bingxiao (b.1700s) to Zhao Zhu to Liang Xuexiang (1810-1895). Liang Xuexiang was the first master to use the name of Plum Blossom. Liang Xuexiang's disciples, mainly Jiang Hualong, Liang Jingchuan, Sun Yuanchang, Hao Hong and Xiu Kunshan are responsible for popularization of this style in the 20th century. In the early 1900s, it heavily influenced the development of Taiji Mantis of Cui Shoushan and Wang Yushan, Taiji Plum Blossom of Hao Family, Taiji Mantis of Zhao Zhuxi and Babu Mantis of Wei Xiaotang.

Taiji Praying Mantis Boxing. Today this style is represented by two distinct lineages. The first one is that of Cui Shoushan and Wang Yushan and is based on Song Zide and Jiang Hualong's Plum Blossom teachings in Laiyang, Shandong Province. It is popular in Laiyang, Yantai, Qingdao, Dalian, North America, Russia, France and Spain. The second lineage can be traced to Sun Yuanchang's Blum Blossom, who was yet another disciple of Liang Xuexiang. Its most famous progenitor is Zhao Zhu Xi, who is said to have taught (both directly and indirectly) thousands of students during his lifetime in Vietnam and Hong Kong, who have since spread to all corners of the globe. He was given the Cantonese nickname Chuk Kai, meaning "Bamboo Creek", for a famous battle he fought with bandits at that location. This style has since become prevalent in places such as Korea, Hong Kong, Vietnam, and North America.

Taiji Plum Blossom Praying Mantis Boxing. This style is, historically, a combination of two different lineages of Mantis: Taiji Mantis and Plum Blossom Mantis. This style is widespread in Yantai, Qingdao, Beijing, Dalian, Harbin, etc. What is now called Taiji Plum Blossom traces its lineage to Hao Lianru —a disciple of Liang Xuexiang, his sons Hao Henglu, Hao Hengxin and his grandson Hao Bin. The later three combined both Taiji Mantis and Plum Blossom in the early 20th Century, creating the current style. Hao Lianru's five sons have since spread the style elsewhere. This style is well-known for its large, two-handed sword, and for being somewhat 'softer' than Seven Star Praying Mantis.

Six Harmony Praying Mantis Boxing. Known as the 'softest' or most 'internal' of the Praying Mantis styles, Six Harmony was passed down by Ding Zhicheng whose students taught in Shandong Province as well as Taiwan. Six Harmony Praying Mantis has a very different curriculum, with unique routines not found in other Praying Mantis styles.

Southern Praying Mantis (martial art)

For the Northern Chinese self-defence technique from Shandong, see Northern Praying Mantis (martial art). Despite its name, the Southern Praying Mantis style of Chinese martial arts is unrelated to the Northern Praying Mantis style. Southern Praying Mantis is instead related most closely to fellow Hakka styles such as Dragon and more distantly to the Fujian family of styles that includes Fujian White Crane, Five Ancestors, and Wing Chun.

Southern Praying Mantis is a close range fighting system that places much emphasis on short power and has aspects of both internal and external techniques.  As in other southern styles, the arms are the main weapon, with kicks usually limited to the hip and under. Emphasis is placed on strengthening and lengthening the arms.

When an extended arm has strength, it allows the practitioner to move about faster since his arms don't need to recoil or move back for more strength, like in boxing or many other fighting systems.

Like Wing Chun and Xingyiquan—other styles created as pure fighting arts—Southern Praying Mantis has relatively no aesthetic value, unlike its northern counterpart and many other styles.
Southern Praying Mantis is informed by traditional Chinese medicine, in particular the concept of meridians, which it uses for dim mak and tui na.


The four main branches of Southern Praying Mantis are:

  • Chow Gar (Chow family)
  • Chu Gar (Chu family)
  • Kwong Sai Jook Lum ( Jiangxi Bamboo Forest)
  • Iron Ox

A common antecedent can be surmised not only from their similarities but also from the fact that they all share a common routine, Sarm Bo Jin. However, the genealogies of these branches are not complete enough to trace them to a single common ancestor.

Lau Shui

Only the kinship between the Chow and Chu family branches can be verified as their most recent common ancestor, Lau Shui (died in 1942, comparatively recently.

Chow Gar

The Chow family branch traces its art to c. 1800 to Chow Ah-Nam a Hakka who as a boy left his home in Guangdong Province for medical treatment at the Southern Shaolin Monastery in Fujian Province where, in addition to being treated for his stomach ailment, he was trained in the martial arts and eventually created Southern Praying Mantis.

Chu Gar

The Chu family branch attributes its art to Chu Fook-To, who created Southern Praying Mantis as a fighting style for opponents of the Manchu Qing Dynasty (1644–1912) that overthrew the Han Chinese Ming royal family (1368–1644) of which he was a member. According to the Chu family branch, because Chu took refuge there, the Qing destroyed the original Shaolin Monastery in Henan, forcing Chu to flee to the Southern Shaolin Monastery in Fujian.

Kwong Sai Jook Lum

The Kwong Sai Jook Lum style traces its origins to the temple Jook Lum Gee on Mt. Longhu in Kwong Sai, where it was created in the early 19th century by one of the monks, Som Dot.In the mid-19th century, Som Dot passed the art on to fellow monk Lee Siem, who would visit Guangdong to the south and teach the art to lay practitioners there. One of Lee's students from Guangdong, Chung Yu-Chang, would return with him to Kwong Sai to complete his training at Jook Lum Gee. C. 1900, Chung opened his first martial arts school in a traditional Chinese medicine clinic in Bao'an County in Píngshān Town, which his eventual successors Wong Yook-Kong and Lum Wing-Fay were natives of. Wong would be responsible for the preservation of Kwong Sai Jook Lum Praying Mantis within China and Lum (also referred to as "Lum Sang", literally "Mister Lum," out of respect by his successors) responsible for its dissemination without. Succeeding the 4th generation master Lum Wing-Fay is Gin Foon-Mark (Mok, Mok Fun). Gin Foon-Mark represent the highest living authorities on Kwong Sai Jook Lum Praying Mantis.

The following history are the Kwong Sai Bamboo (Jook Lum) Temple Praying Mantis under Master Wong Yuk Gong stream

The original Kwong Sai Bamboo (Jook Lum) Temple Praying Mantis Kung Fu is neither differentiated by southern and northern styles. However, many people have popularly classified this system as Southern Praying Mantis.

The history was told and passed by Master Cheung Yiu Chung ("Master Cheung"); Som Dot (the founder of Praying Mantis Kung Fu) was raised in Tibet. During the Qing Dynasty, Lee Kun Ching (Lee Shem See) and Wong Do Leng became the disciples of Som Dot. Som Dot taught his disciples Kung Fu and Spiritualism at Long Fu Shan in Kwong Sai province and the Jook Lum Temple of Wu Tai Shan in Shan Xi province.

On a journey to heal his patience Lee Shem See travelled to the southern regions of Zhi Zhu - the "crossroad" of Xing Ning and Mei Xian (Mei County). As destiny would have it Cheung Yiu Chung met Lee Shem See and was subsequently invited to be his disciple.

Cheung Yiu Chung accompanied Lee Shem See to the Wu Tai Shan Jook Lum Temple in order to practice Kung Fu and study medicine. Ultimately Cheung Yiu Chung mastered these pursuits. In 1917, Master Cheung completed his studies and left Wu Tai Shan Jook Lum Temple. In 1919 Master Cheung returned to resided in Wei Yang Xian (Wei Yang County) Dan Shui in Guangdong Province. During the winter of 1929, Master Cheung established a Kung Fu Kwon / School in Ping Shan to propagate the Bamboo Temple Praying Mantis Kung Fu Style.

Forefather Wong Yuk Gong, raised in Ping Shan, is the eldest disciple of Master Cheung. At the age of Thirteen Wong Yuk Gong began to follow Master Cheung and learn the art of Jook Lum Temple Praying Mantis Kung Fu. At the age of 17 Wong Yuk Gong accompanied Master Cheung to propagate the art of Bamboo (Jook Lum) Temple Praying Mantis Kung Fu in a shipping company called Tin Wo Suen Kwon (Hong Kong).

In his early years Wong Yuk Gong widely spread throughout the communities of the three Wai Dong Bao regions the art of Bamboo (Jook Lum) Temple Praying Mantis Kung Fu. Wong Yuk Gong mastered both Kung Fu and traditional medicine in Ping Shan School and then also established Kung Fu Kwon's / Schools in many places including Tsuen Wan and Kwun Tong (Hong Kong) to nurture his disciples and propagate the art.

Bamboo Temple Praying Mantis has two primary elements: Sun Kung signifying the spiritual practice of kung fu and Ming Kung, which is the physical practice of the art. For those teaching Sun Kung, the over riding principle and practice is Spiritualism at the altar.

For those teaching Ming Kung, the phrase "Good hands technique is inherited from Som Dot and, expertise in Kung fu is practiced in the Bamboo Temple" is the over riding principle at the altar.
The foundation Praying Mantis hand skills from this stream should be the first form ("Dan Jong") and second form ("Seung Jong"). Weapons include the Sword, Double Swords, Iron Bar, Spear, Sabre, Staff, Halberd and so on, whilst the traditional and Unicorn dance and Gong / Symbol are practiced. There is not a so-called "Head" in Wong Yuk Gong brotherhood. They just say "Heir". The heir acts with ultimate humility, compassion, harmony and benevolence to all.
Master Wong Yiu Wah / Wong Yiu Hung, sons of Wong Yuk Gong, is alive and well currently teaching in China.

Iron Ox

The Iron Ox branch is named after its founder, Iron Ox Choi (Choi Dit-Ngau; who fought in the Boxer Rebellion (1900).

"Hakka Kuen"

Though the origins of Southern Praying Mantis may be contested, what is indisputable is its association with the Hakka people of inland eastern Guangdong. The region that is home to Southern Praying Mantis begins in the very heart of Hakka territory at Xingning, where Chow Gar founder Chow Ah-Nam came from. From Xingning, the Dongjiang flows west out of the prefecture of Meizhou through Heyuan, where Iron Ox founder Choi Dit-Ngau came from. In the prefecture of Huizhou, the Dongjiang forms the northern border of Huìyáng County, where Kwong Sai Jook Lum master Chung Yu-Chang and Chow/Chu Gar master Lau Shui came from. From there, the Dongjiang flows into the Pearl River Delta at Bao'an County (present-day Shenzhen), where Kwong Sai Jook Lum masters Wong Yook-Gong and Lum Wing-Fay came from. These masters all belonged to the Hakka people, who kept Southern Praying Mantis to themselves until the generation of Lau Shui and Lum Wing-Fay.

In fact, Kwong Sai Jook Lum tradition records that it was once nicknamed "Hakka Kuen" (literally "Hakka fist") by the general public of the Pearl River Delta. When Lum Wing-Fay first began teaching Southern Praying Mantis in the United States, he did so at Hakka fraternal organizations such the Tsung Tsin Association Lum would eventually accept students that were not Hakka, but they still had to be Chinese (with the rumored exception of a Caucasian taxi driver whose extraordinary kindness to Lum won the driver some basic instruction from one of Lum's disciples). It was the following generation of Kwong Sai Jook Lum masters who made the art available to non-Chinese.

Lau Shui's acceptance of the non-Hakka Ip Shui as a disciple had much to do with the kindness that Ip and his wife showed Lau when he had fallen ill and was isolated from any relatives by the Japanese occupation of Hong Kong. Most of Lau's other disciples, including the so-called "first five tigers" and four of the "last five tigers"—Chu Kwong-Wha, Chu Yu-Hing, Lum Wha, and Wong Hong-Kwong—were all Hakka.

Chu Gar Southern Praying Mantis tradition contends that the Hakka descend from loyalists of the Ming Dynasty who fled south when it was overthrown by the Qing Dynasty. However, according to mainstream Chinese historical scholarship, the term "Hakka" originally referred, not to refugees fleeing persecution by the Qing Dynasty, but to those whom the Qing Dynasty paid to settle in underpopulated regions of southern China. Among southern Chinese martial arts, the Chu family branch of Southern Praying Mantis is far from alone in claiming an anti-Qing heritage; that most do reflects the prominence of anti-Qing partisans in southern Chinese martial arts. Both Guangdong and Fujian are provinces that the Hakka call home, both are strongly associated with the southern Chinese martial arts, and both saw strong and persistent opposition to Qing rule, such as the Hakka-led Taiping Rebellion and the Heaven and Earth Society, whose founders were from the prefecture of Zhangzhou in Fujian Province, on its border with Guangdong. Societies like Heaven and Earth were noteworthy for how their membership transcended traditional Chinese social barriers like those separating Hakka from non-Hakka. In fact, a precursor to the Heaven and Earth Society was organized by Ti Xi, one of the Heaven and Earth founders, in Huizhou, part of the aforementioned "heartland" of Hakka Praying Mantis. The Heaven and Earth Society developed myths of Shaolin origins as part of a larger anti-Qing narrative. Perhaps Hakka opposed to the Qing Dynasty did something similar, redacting their own migration and the southward flight of Ming loyalist refugees into a single narrative.

Chin Na

Chin Na or Qinna, qín ná, is a Chinese term describing techniques used in the Chinese martial arts that control or lock an opponents joints or muscles/tendons so he cannot move, thus neutralizing their fighting ability. Also chin na su, su meaning technique. Chin na su literally means technique of catching and locking in Chinese. Some schools simply use the word na to describe the techniques.
While techniques along the lines of chin na are trained to some degree by most martial arts worldwide, many Chinese martial arts are famous for their specialization in such applications. Styles such as Eagle Claw (Yīng zhua quán ) which includes 108 different chin na techniques, Praying Mantis (Tánglángquán) and the "Tiger Claw" techniques of Hung Gar, Shaolin 8-Animal Kung Fu (Chi Lu Chuan) and Pan Nam Wing Chun are well known examples. Though they do not use the Chinese name of Chin Na, many of the Japanese martial arts (or budo) utilize techniques of locking, trapping and breaking identical to Chin Na. Notable among these are Judo, jujutsu and Aikido.

Chin Na can generally be categorized (in Chinese) as:

  1. "Fen Jin" or "Zhua Jin" (dividing the muscle/tendon, grabbing the muscle/tendon). "Fen" means "to divide", "Zhua" is "to grab" and "Jin" means "tendon, muscle, sinew". They refer to techniques which tear apart an opponent's muscles or tendons.
  2. "Cuo Gu" (misplacing the bone). "Cuo" means "wrong, disorder" and "Gu" means "bone". Cuo Gu therefore refer to techniques which put bones in wrong positions and is usually applied to joints specifically.
  3. "Bi Qi" (sealing the breath). "Bi" means "to close, seal or shut" and "Qi", or more specifically "Kong Qi", meaning "air". "Bi Qi" is the technique of preventing the opponent from inhaling. This differs from mere strangulation in that it may be applied not only to the windpipe directly but also to muscles surrounding the lungs, supposedly to shock the system in to a contraction which impairs breathing.
  4. "Dian Mai" or "Dian Xue" (sealing the vein/artery or acupressue cavity). Similar to the Cantonese "Dim Mak", these are the technique of sealing or striking blood vessels and "Qi" points.

Chin means to seize or trap, na means to lock or break, and while those actions are very often executed in that order (trap then lock), the two actions can also be performed distinctly in training and self defense. Which is to say, a trap isn't always followed by a lock or break, and a lock or break is not necessarily set up by a trap.

There is quite a bit of overlap between Chin Na theory and technique with the branches of traditional Chinese medicine known as tui na as well as the use of offensive and defensive ch'i kung as an adjunct of chin na training in some styles.

Dragon Kung Fu

The movements of the Dragon style literally "dragon shape rubbing bridges" of Chinese martial arts are based on the mythical Chinese dragon.


The history of Dragon style has historically been transmitted orally rather than by text, so its origins will probably never be known in their entirety. Modern Dragon style's history can be reliably traced back to the monk Tai Yuk Sim See who was the abbot of Wa Sau Toi (White Hair) temple on mount Luofu. No reliable records of the style's origin prior to that exist, though there is much speculation regarding the subject.

Dragon style has roots in Hakka Kuen, a combination of the local styles of the Hakka heartland in inland eastern Guangdong with the style that the monk Gee Sim Sim See taught in Guangdong and the neighboring province of Fujian in the 1700s.

North of the Dongjiang in the northwest of Bóluó County in the prefecture of Huizhou in Guangdong Province is the sacred mountain Luófúshān. Luófúshān is the site of many temples, including Wa Sau Toi where, c. 1900, a Chan (Zen) master named Tai Yuk taught Dragon style to Lam Yiu-Kwai, who in turn passed the art on to the many students of his schools in Guangzhou.
Lam Yiu-Kwai and Cheung Lai-Chuen were good friends from their youth in the Dongjiang region of Huizhou, longtime training partners and later cousins by marriage. Lam and Cheung would open several schools together, and Dragon style and Cheung's style of Bak Mei share many similarities.



The dragon stylist relies on a variety of fighting techniques that can be employed for a wide range of needs. The style uses techniques that can cripple or kill an opponent if the need arises or it can be used simply to control a minor street fighting situation.  Like most southern style kungfu, it has limited kicks and jumps and consisted mainly of fist , palm and clawing techniques. Power generated from the waist using soft hard jin.


The Dragon Kung Fu practitioner typically attacks with winding low yang; that is, powerful and quick movements. For example, when striking with the fist, more power can be exerted when the movement originates from the feet, is guided by the waist, flows through the body, and exits through the fist.

Foot work

In Southern Dragon style, leg work is characterized by a zig-zag motion that mimics the imagined movement of the mythical Chinese dragon. This also allows one to use floating and sinking movements which are very important in generating power and stability.making your body calm and relaxed.

Southern Dragon style motto

"Control yourself, let others do what they will.
This does not mean you are weak.
Control your heart, obey the principles of life.
This does not mean others are stronger."

Codes of Southern Dragon style

  • The seeds were first planted from Haufeng; the essence was gained later at Haushou
  • Restrain one's self and yield to others not because one is weak, but to uphold the ethical Tao and let the others have their claim.

Four rules & two principles

  1. Focus to train and condition the body. One must not have any act of laziness.
  2. Be righteous and uphold your honor. One must not have any act of hypocrisy.
  3. Respect your parents, honor your teacher. One must not have any act of defiance.
  4. Treat others with honesty, treat your friends with loyalty. One must not have any act of arrogance.

Black Tiger Kung Fu

Shaolin Shandong Black Tiger Kung Fu, Hei Hu Quan, black tiger fist) is a northern Chinese martial art which originated in Shandong Province.

It is characterised by its extensive footwork (similar to Shaolin Southern Eagle), acrobatic kicks, low, wide stances, and unique fist position (where the thumb is curled in the same manner as the other fingers, rather than wrapped around them). According to the Shaolin Grandmasters' text the style is the single most external style in the Shaolin canon; the longer the stylist practices, however, the more she or he comes to rely solely on internal power. In this respect it is similar to Northern Praying Mantis.

The traditional lineage of the system begins with master Wang Zhenyuan in the late nineteenth-century; but the style was originally formed at the Shaolin Henan Temple before being transferred to Wang. The style was then passed from Wang Zhenyuan to Wang Zijiu, then to Wang Zhixiao, and finally to Su Fuyuan (Cantonese: Souw Hok Gwan). Currently Shandong Black Tiger is actively taught in the Netherlands and Indonesia.

Fu Jow Pai
Fu Jow Pai , literally "Tiger Claw System", originally named "Hark Fu Moon" (Black Tiger Kung Fu System), has its origins in Hoy Hong Temple.The system "was modeled after the demeanor and fighting strategy of an attacking tiger. The striking movements are lightning fast, agile and powerful. Techniques unique to Fu-Jow Pai are ripping, tearing, clawing and grasping applications."

Fu Jow Pai Grand Masters trained in the following additional styles:

  • Wong Bil Hong mastered Hung Gar under Wong Kei-Ying and his son, Wong Fei-Hung.
  • Wong Moon Toy mastered Hung Gar under Lam Sai Wing and Mizongyi under Lau Chook Fung and Doon Yuk Ching before training in Hark Fu Moon with his uncle, Wong Bil Hong.
  • Wai Hong also learned (most notably) Hung Gar, Mizongyi, Choy Lee Fut, and Tai Chi Chuan

In 1971, Wai Hong sponsored the first full-contact kung fu tournament in the US and which became the model for future US full-contact tournaments. He also founded the Eastern United States Kung-Fu Federation, which he led for eight years. Fu-Jow Pai has appeared in multiple movies, documentaries, and tournaments.

Leopard Kung Fu

Leopard Kung fu is style of Kung fu and is one of the Five Animal styles.
It was supposedly created by Jueyuan with help from Bai Yufeng and Li Sou. The emphasis of leopard is speed and angular attack. The leopard does not overwhelm or rely on strength, as does the tiger, but instead relies on speed and outsmarting its opponent. The power, as in all kung fu forms, comes from a solid stance, but in leopard it particularly comes from the aggressive speed. The leopard practitioner will focus on elbows, knees, low kicks, and leopard punches.

The goals of Leopard style are to:

  • develop muscle speed for external strength.
  • teach patience.
  • use the leopard punch for penetration and lower body springing power.

The leopard style was founded on the creators' observation of the movements of the leopard in the wild, and therefore practitioners of the style imitate these movements. Blocking is wasted in Leopard - the style can be summed up with "Why block when you can hit?" It does not rely on rooted stances, and would only assume a stance while in attack in order to launch at the opponent. This hit and run technique of the leopard, something especially effective against larger opponents, is unique to the animal.

The primary weapon is the leopard fist, which can be likened to a half-opened fist. The primary striking surface is the ridge formed by folding the fingers at the first phalangal joint. The secondary striking surface is the palm. The leopard claw can also be modified for grabbing and tearing.

An interesting technique of the leopard is the ability to simultaneously block and strike the opponent. This is not commonly used in the harder martial arts (like the other Shaolin styles, for example). The sheer speed of the leopard is a defining characteristic of the style; however, as with all martial arts of this style, the practitioner's ability to provide the necessary speed diminishes as he ages, reducing his or her efficacy in combat.

In popular culture the Leopard style is used in the Mortal Kombat series. Darrius uses the art in Deception' and the character Nitara also uses the style in both Deadly Alliance and 'Armageddon

Pào Chuí (Cannon)

Sān Huáng Pào Chuí (Chinese: 三皇炮捶; literally "Three Emperor Cannon Punch") is a Chinese martial art attributed to the Three August Ones: Fuxi, Shennong, and Gonggong.
The spread of Pào Chuí was due in part to its early association with Shaolin. Pào Chuí was one of the earliest styles to be imported intact into the martial arts curriculum at the Shaolin Monastery. According to legend, the Shaolin monks learned Pào Chuí from a martial artist of Mount Emei.
At a festival thrown by the Emperor Gaozu, the Shaolin monk Tanzong gave a demonstration of Pào Chuí.

Chen style Tàijíquán includes a Pào Chuí routine in its curriculum.

Five Animals

In the Chinese martial arts, imagery of the Five Animals (wǔ xíng; literally "Five Forms")—Tiger, Crane, Leopard, Snake, and Dragon—appears predominantly in Southern styles, especially those associated with Guangdong and Fujian Provinces.

The Five Animal martial arts supposedly originated from the Henan Shaolin Temple, which is north of the Yangtze, even though imagery of these particular five animals as a distinct set (i.e. in the absence of other animals such as the horse or the monkey as in T'ai Chi Ch'üan or Xíngyìquán) is either rare in Northern Shaolin martial arts—and Northern Chinese martial arts in general—or recent (cf. wǔxíngbāfǎquán; 五形八法拳; "Five Form Eight Method Fist").

The Legend of the Five Animals

Shaolin first became famous because the Tang Dynasty (618–907) saw fit to favor the monastery with its patronage as thanks for the role its monks played in the Battle of Hulao. The sudden renown of the Shaolin martial arts attracted pilgrims who came specifically to study its fighting methods. However, the more people that sought training at the temple, the smaller the proportion of them that had the time or the inclination to truly dedicate themselves. Some regarded the Shaolin imprimatur as a kind of talisman that rendered years of training unnecessary. Others only wanted to fight well and cared little for esoterica like qìgōng, erasing over centuries the difference between the Shaolin martial arts and those crude methods on which it was supposed to improve.
Another was Jueyuan, who in the 13th century started from first principles with the 18 Luohan Hands, the original 18 techniques of the Shaolin martial arts. Like those before him, Jueyuan used the original 18 Luohan Hands as a foundation, expanding its 18 techniques into 72. Still, he felt the need to seek knowledge from outside the confines of the temple.

In Gansu Province in the west of China, in the city of Lanzhou, he met Li Sou, a master of "Red Fist" Hóngquán (紅拳). Li Sou accompanied Jueyuan back to Henan, to Luoyang to introduce Jueyuan to Bai Yufeng, master of an internal method.

They returned to Shaolin with Bai Yufeng and expanded Jueyuan's 72 techniques to approximately 170. Moreover, using their combined knowledge, they restored internal aspects to Shaolin boxing.
They organized these techniques into Five Animals: the Tiger, the Crane, the Leopard, the Snake, and the Dragon.


Jueyuan is also credited with the Northern style "Flood Fist" Hóngquán (洪拳), which does not feature the Five Animals but is written with the same characters as the Southern style Hung Kuen, perhaps the quintessential Five Animals style. Moreover, as in the Southern Hung Kuen, the "Hóng" character (洪) in Hóngquán actually refers to a family name rather than its literal meaning of "flood." However, the two styles have nothing in common beyond their shared name.

Moreover, in Mandarin, "wǔxíng" is the pronunciation not only of "Five Animals," but also of "Five Elements," the core techniques of Xíngyìquán, which also features animal mimicry (but of 10 or 12 animals rather than 5) and, with its high narrow Sāntǐshì (三體勢) stance, looks nothing so much like a Fujianese Southern style stranded in the North

Chang chuan – Long Fist

Chángquán "Long Fist" is a general term for external (as opposed to internal) Northern Wushu. It is one of the types of Wushu kung fu.

The forms within the Long Fist style emphasize fully extended kicks and striking techniques, and by its appearance would be considered a long range fighting system. In some Long Fist styles the motto is that "the best defense is a strong offense," in which case the practitioner launches a pre-emptive attack so aggressive that the opponent doesn't have the opportunity to attack. Long Fist uses large, extended, circular movements to improve overall body mobility in the muscles, tendons, and joints. After advanced study, a Long Fist practitioner will find that its forms contain Qin Na joint-locking techniques, as well as Shuai Jiao throws and takedowns.

The Long Fist style is considered to contain a good balance of hand and foot techniques, but in particular it is renowned for its devastating acrobatic kicks. Of contemporary wǔshù events, Long Fist techniques are most popular and memorable with its whirling, running, leaping, and acrobatics. Chanquan moves are difficult to perform, requiring great flexibility and athleticism comparable to gymnasts.

Long Fist’s arsenal of kicks covers everything from a basic front toe-kick to a jumping back-kick, from a low sweep to a tornado-kick. Specifically, typical moves in modern Changquan include: xuanfengjiao (旋风脚; "whirlwind kick"), xuanzi (旋子; "butterfly jump"), cekongfan (侧空翻; "side somersault"), and tengkongfeijiao (腾空飞脚; "flying jump kick").

History of Long Fist

The core of Changquan / Long Fist was developed in the 10th century by Zhao Kuangyin, founding Emperor of the Song Dynasty (960–1279). His style was called Tàizǔ Chángquán, which means "the Long Fist style of Emperor Taizu." In semi-legendary "classic" writings transmitted by Tàijíquán's Yang family, their martial art is referred to by the name Chángquán in one of the received texts. These texts can only be reliably dated to the second half of the 19th century. The Long fist of contemporary wǔshù draws on Chāquán, "flower fist" Huāquán, Pào Chuí, and "red fist" (Hóngquán).

Subtypes of Long Fist

  • Pào Chuí (Chinese: 炮捶; literally "cannon punch") pre-Tang Dynasty;
  • Chāquán (Chinese: 查拳; Cha Yuanyi style) Tang Dynasty (618–907);
  • Tàizǔ Chángquán (Chinese: 太祖長拳; "Emperor Taizu long fist") Song Dynasty (960–1279);
  • Fānziquán (Chinese: 翻子拳; "tumbling fist") Song Dynasty (960–1279);
  • Hóngquán (Chinese: 紅拳; "red fist") Song Dynasty (960–1279); and
  • Huáquán (Chinese: 華拳; "China fist") Tang Dynasty (618–907).

A sample Long Fist curriculum

North Shaolin Long Fist Kung Fu Includes:

  1. Bare Hand Forms
  2. Weapons
  3. Chin na Dui Da (Joint Locking skills & sets)
  4. Two Man Fighting Routines
  5. Self Defense Applications
  6. Iron Palm Training (Internal)

Hand Forms:

  1. Lian Bu Quan - Consecutive Linking Step Fist
  2. Gong Li Quan or Power Fist Form
  3. Tan Tui or Springing Legs
  4. 20 Methods Fighting Form or Er Shi Er Fa Chuan
  5. Duan Da Quan - Fighting In Close Quarters Boxing/Short Hit Boxing
  6. Hua Quan - First Set Of China Fist Yi Lu Xi Yue
  7. Hua Quan 2 - Second Set Of China Fist Er Lu Xi Yue
  8. Hua Quan 3 - Third Set Of China Fist San Lu Xi Yue
  9. Hua Quan 4 - Fourth Set Of China Fist Si Lu Xi Yue
  10. Hua Quan 2 2 Man - Second Set Of China Fist Two Man Fighting Set Er Lu Xi Yue
  11. Hua Quan 4 2 Man - Fourth Set Of China Fist Two Man Fighting Set Si Lu Xi Yue

Hand Forms Explained:

  1. Lian Bu Quan - Consecutive Linking Step Fist: the most basic Shaolin Long form containing over 70 applications.
  2. Gong Li Quan or Power Fist Form: the second basic form using dynamic tension at the end of each technique which develops muscles and tendons. Contains over 70 applications.
  3. Tan Tui or Springing Legs: contains spring-like kicks.

Stances used in the Long Fist System:

  1. High Tiger
  2. Low Tiger
  3. Rooster
  4. High Lotus
  5. Low Lotus
  6. Bow and Arrow
  7. Horse Stance
  8. Empty - similar to the Cat Stance
  9. Tai chi - similar to Empty, but with toes up and heel on the ground
  10. Half Horse Stance (Lead foot turned forward)

Weapons Training:

  1. Long Staff
  2. Broadsword (Dao)
  3. Double Edge Sword
  4. Spear
  5. Chain
  6. Dragon Phoenix Sword
  7. Umbrella
  8. Straight Sword
  9. Double Sword
  10. Double Broadsword
  11. Pudao

Monkey Kung Fu

Monkey Kung Fu is a Chinese martial art where the movements imitate monkeys or apes in fighting. One of the more acrobatic kung fu styles, movements often include falling, lunging, grabbing, jumping, and tumbling. The staff features prominently in its weapons training, with practitioners using it for attack, defense, and even climbing it like a pole to gain height in combat. The flamboyant movements and sometimes comic actions of the monkey style has made it a popular subject in Hong Kong martial arts movies.


Hou Quan

Hou Quan (猴拳), literally 'Monkey's Fist' or 'Monkey Boxing', is recorded in part as early as the Han Dynasty(206 BC–AD 220) where it was performed as a part of the Mi Hou Wu dance in the Emperor's court. Contrary to popular beliefs, there are actually a number of independently developed systems of monkey kung fu. Examples includes Xingzhemen (行者門) named after the protagonist Sun Wukong of the popular Ming dynasty novel Journey to the West, Nanhouquan (南猴拳) or Southern Monkey Fist originating from the Southern Shaolin Temple as well as the more well known Tai Sheng Pek Kwar Moon (大聖劈掛門) style of Hong Kong. The houquan style from the Emei region, taught by the famous "Monkey King" Xiao Yingpeng and others, was also used as the basis for the modern wushu variant of monkey style (and monkey staff) that is often seen in demonstrations and competitions today. Each independent style has its own unique approach to the expression of how to incorporate a monkey's movements into fighting.

Hou Quan may have contributed to other styles as well. For example, Wang Lang, the 17th century founder of Northern Praying Mantis Boxing (tanglang quan), was said to have borrowed the footwork of the Monkey style to complement the extremely fast handwork of Praying Mantis Kung Fu.

Tai Sheng Men

Tai Sheng Men, or "Great Saint" Kung Fu, was developed near the end of the Qing dynasty (1644-1911)by a fighter named Kau Sze from a small village in Northern China. Legend states that while serving a sentence in prison, he observed a group of monkeys from his cell. As he studied their movements and mannerisms, he found that they combined well with his own Tei Tong style. While exact circumstances of Kau Sze's inspiration remain legend, upon his release he developed his new style of fighting and dubbed it 'Tai Sheng Men' (Great Saint Style) in honor of the Monkey King Sun Wukong in the Buddhist tale Journey to the West.

Pek Kwar
Pek Kwar Kung Fu dates back to the Ming Dynasty some time around 1500.It was widely taught in the army because it is practical, direct and powerful. Pek Kwar concentrates on upper body, forearm, fist, low stance training and total body co-ordination. "Pek" means "chopping or downward arm or fist attack" and "Kwar" means "swinging or upward arm or fist attack," in Chinese. Loosely translated it means "axe fist". (Pek Kwar Kuen is the Cantonese pronunciation for Piguaquan.)

Tai Shing Pek Kwar

Tai Shing Pek Kwar Kung Fu (大聖劈掛門) was developed by Kau Sze's student Kan Tak Hoi, who started learning Pek Kwar kung fu from his father Kan Wing Kwai from as early as 8 years of age. Kan Wing Kwai was a master of Pek Kwar kung fu and after his death, Kau Sze decided to train Kan Tak Hoi in Tai Shing Kung Fu. After mastering Tai Shing Kung Fu and combining it with Pek Kwar Kung Fu, out of respect for Kau Sze's friendship, in naming the new technique Kan Tak Hoi placed Tai Shing at the beginning followed by Pek Kwar hence the name Tai Shing Pek Kwar Kung Fu.


Hou Quan

Traditional hou quan as taught in Mainland China includes running on all fours (i.e. the hands and feet), various difficult acrobatic movements such as flipping sideways in the air, front flips, back flips, hand stands, walking on the hands, forward lunges/dives, backward lunges, spinning on the butt, spinning on the back and many kicks and strikes. Most of the attacks are aimed at the knees, groin area, throat or eyes of the opponent and hand strikes are normally either open handed slaps or clawing with a semi-closed fist called the monkey claw. Besides, a wide array of facial monkey expressions are also practiced, inclusive of happiness, anger, fear, fright, confusion and bewilderment etc. Except for very brief periods, most movements inclusive of running are executed from either a squatting or semi-squatting position and are normally accompanied by very swift and 'jerky' head movements as the practitioner nervously looks around. The monkey staff, or hou gun (猴棍), is one of this style's specialty weapons. Monkey boxing is an imitative technique and so execution of the movements and facial expressions must be so convincing that it looks exactly like a monkey and not simply like a human imitating a monkey hence the very high degree of difficulty associated with this technique.

Tai Sheng Pek Kwar

There are six variations of monkey kung fu developed as part of the Tai Sheng Men system, and still utilized in the later Tai Sheng Pek Kwar system (although the Crafty monkey variation described below may have been absorbed into the Lost monkey curriculum in Tai Shing Pek Kwar and Bak Si Lum among others, hence there are only five variations listed, in these systems):

  1. Drunken Monkey uses a lot of throat, eye and groin strikes as well as tumbling and falling techniques. It incorporates a lot of false steps to give the appearance it is defenseless and uses a lot of off balance strikes. The practitioner waddles, takes very faltering steps and sometimes fall to the ground and lies prone while waiting the opponent to approach at which time a devastating attack is launched at the knees or groin areas of the opponent. In drunken monkey you use more internal energy than any other. It is one of the most difficult of the monkey styles to master and also the most powerful.
  2. Stone Monkey is a "physical" style. The practitioner trains up his body to exchange blows with the opponent - Stone Monkey uses a kind of Iron body method. It will leave an area exposed on its body for an opponent to attack, so it can attack a more vital spot on the body.
  3. Lost Monkey feigns a lot. He gives the appearance of being lost and confused to deceive the opponent into underestimating his abilities, and he retaliates when least expected. The hands and footwork change and flow from each other at will. All monkeys are sociable animals and so they live in troops or family groups. They are also very territorial by nature and so when they wander into the territory of another troop there is normally a fight possibly resulting in death to the trespassers. This technique incorporates the fear, nervousness and mischief of a monkey who has wandered into a neighboring territory, in that it attempts to pick and eat as many fruits and insects as quickly as is possible while nervously looking around before scurrying back to its own home range.
  4. Standing Monkey or Tall Monkey is a relatively conventional monkey that likes to keep an upright position and avoid tumbling around. This style is more suited for tall people. Tall monkey likes to climb body limbs to make attacks at pressure points. It is a long range style.
  5. Crafty monkey is very deceptive, it uses different faked emotions to lure opponents into attacking. By pretending to be scared for example it lulls the opponent into a false sense of security and waits for the opponents guard to be down, then suddenly attacks when not expected. This variation is not listed in the Tai Shing Pek Kwar system, instead it appears to have been absorbed into the Lost Monkey curriculum.
  6. Wooden Monkey mimics a serious, angry monkey that attacks and defends with ferocity. The attitude of this monkey is more serious, and its movements are noticeably less light than the other monkeys. Wood monkey likes to grapple and bring its opponent to the ground.

Additional Information

Monkey boxers usually wear very bright yellow colored uniforms most often with red trimmings or appliqués. The favorite weapon for Monkey Boxing is the staff or stick and standing beside it, the upper end of the staff is normally 'eye-height' for the practitioner. There are also other weapons favored by Monkey Boxers e.g. the broadsword, straight-sword and the spear as well as the iron ring. Monkey forms are not normally performed fast paced from start to finish as in other techniques, instead the practitioner will execute a very swift series of movements then stop to 'play' (which means to fidget or scratch and it usually involves nervously looking around, picking imaginary fruits or insects from off the legs, arms, ears or head and even the groin area then very quickly eating them or scooping water from an imaginary pond or stream then drinking it). In the lost monkey technique, there is a lot of running, nervously looking around, rolling, kicking and punching to the groin area of the opponent. Please note that the running is done in a semi-squatting position and also that a clenched fist is not used in monkey boxing, instead the fingers are loosely held like a semi-closed fist sometimes referred to as the monkey claw. With the exception of the Tall Monkey technique, all monkey forms tend to be executed from the squatting and stooping positions. When well executed, monkey forms are very comical and generally very entertaining and so tend to attract the most attention at martial arts tournaments.

Iron shirt

Iron Shirt  is a form of hard style martial art exercise for protecting the human body from impacts in a fight. Some martial arts are based on the idea that a correctly trained body can withstand more damage than one that is untrained. Iron Shirt is said to be a series of exercises using many post stances, herbs, qigong and body movements to cause the body's natural energy (qi) to reinforce its structural strength. Practitioners believe that directing energy to parts of the body can reinforce these parts of the body to take blows against them. In the Shaolin version of Iron Shirt, the practitioner would do things such as lying on a stump or supporting tablets of granite on the chest with the goal of toughening the body.

Famous practitioners

According to 13th generation lineage Tai He ("Great Harmony") Wudangquan Master Fan Ke Ping, a collector of rare Kung fu manuals, Zhou Tong, the archery teacher of General Yue Fei, practiced Shènzi bādà Qígōng ( "Testicle Eight Outstanding Techniques"). A book of this style supposedly appeared during the Ming Dynasty and was taught on Wudang Mountain. It became a "hereditary style", taught only to close family members. Other styles include the Hǔ Xiào Jīn Zhōng Zhào (“Tiger Shouting Golden Bell Exercise"), Tie Bu Shan ("Five Phoenix Iron Shirt Work") and the Wu Feng Qi Ming Gui Xi Su ("Five Phoenix Combined Shouting Tortoise Resting Method"). Zhou Tong supposedly learned these skills from an “unknown master” and passed it along. During the Ming Dynasty, Daoist Priest Deng Kun Lun  is fabled to have learned the set and later published a book in 1426 called Dà Sòng Quān Nèi Dì Yī Gāo Shǒu Zhōu Tóng Zhēn Chuán Hǔ Xiào Jīn Zhōng Zhào Fú Qì Liàn Xíng Mì Shù (“Great Song Circle Internal Sequence First Master Zhou Tong True Line Tiger Shouting Golden Bell Exercise Build Secret Technique”).

A folktale called "Meeting Zhou Tong By Chance" states Zhou Tong was walking down the far side of a tall bridge when he noticed a large young man walking up in his direction while looking down at his own feet. Thinking the young man to be a martial arts master wanting to embarrass Zhou by knocking him off the bridge with a shoulder strike, Zhou prepared for a counter-attack and began to swallow air with a subtle “Hm!” and focused all of his energy to his right shoulder. The skin of his shoulder turned red then purple and became hard as rock underneath his clothing. When the two men brushed shoulders, the young man was nearly knocked off of the bridge and the pain caused saliva to pour from his mouth. The attack left him weak in the knees and one side of his body was completely numb. But the incident was a misunderstanding. The young man was none-other-than his future student, the Water Margin bandit Wu Song who was looking down at his feet to avoid large water puddles born from a freak rain shower.

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