A Little History on Kung Fu
Kung Fu a generic label used to describe the martial arts that come from China. Chinese kung fu is not only about fighting but about self discipline, self respect, humbleness and patience. What makes the Chinese martial arts unique is the use of meditation as part of their art. Also the many weapons they have to master is another unique benefit of kung fu. Kung fu really took off in China when they added mind training to their workouts. They were the first to combine mental exercises with physical. The results were the most effective martial arts system around. When the figured out how to train the mind correctly they were able to push the body way beyond its normal limits. One form of meditation they used was Chan meditation.
Chan or Zen was introduced to the Shaolin monks by an Indian priest by the name of Bodhidharma. Bodhidharma would catch the monks falling asleep while in meditation. In order to help them with their meditation he introduced breathing exercises for health, meditation, self-development, and self-defense. Chinese monks still live and practice Chan meditation as well as Shaolin Kung Fu.
Kung fu has more variety of movements, systems, weapons and traditions compared to most of the other martial arts. There are soft and hard types of martial arts in china. Both styles include the use of weapons. Some of the weapons include the broadsword, staff, kwan do, butterfly knives and three section staff. It芒鈧劉s estimated that there are over 200 styles of kung fu. Compare that to Karate or Judo. However, this isn芒鈧劉t always a good thing. It causes much argument and confusion in the kung fu community. You see everyone studying a system believes their system is the best and was the original style. The good thing about this is that there should be a style to suit every body type out there.
Chinese kung fu is a deeply-rooted part of the country"s 5000-year -old civilization. This art is as much of the culture of China as is tea. It芒鈧劉s said that Chinese Kung Fu is the oldest method of combat training from which all other styles and methods derived. In the late 6th century, Chinese Kung Fu is thought to have been introduced to the Okinawan people as Karate. Chinese Kung Fu is arguably one of the oldest styles of martial arts. Their knowledge was passed down and preserved in forms or sets.
A good martial arts system combines the mind and the body. As well as practical self defense. The movements are combined in the styles sets or forms. These forms are like living dictionaries of all the movements. This is how the old masters would pass down their arts to the next generations. As complex as most martial arts systems are the Chinese kung fu systems can take a lifetime to master and understand.