The world of martial arts is vast and full of countless undertakings. What you know now may only be a portion of what’s really lying ahead. Even the most knowledgeable about martial arts may find a new thing or few about it.
There are many forms of martial arts. If you're new, you may find it hard to choose whichever is really meant for you. There are different fighting styles that may or may not interest you. So before venturing into the depths of fighting, different types of kicks and whichever it is that you intend to do, if possible, you must first know everything about martial arts.
I've mentioned that there are many types of martial arts but this time, I'm gonna talk about one of the most popular of them all. The Chinese martial arts. Even in movies, Chinese martial arts is something that is celebrated by most. Partly because people are so hooked by the flashy moves and overall intense fighting scenes that these movies have to offer. But in reality, there's a whole lot more than just flashy moves and ass-kicks.
According to history (and legends), Chinese martial arts has been around since the Xia dynasty (2070 - 1600 BCE). It is said that the Yellow Emperor, Huangdi, introduced the very first fighting style to China.
The Yellow Emperor Huangdi is characterized as a valiant general who wrote treatises on medicine, astrology, as well as martial arts, even before he became China’s ruler.
Jackie Chan, Jet Li, Bruce Lee, Donnie Yen and other Chinese actors who are also known across the world started from being Chinese martial artists. They were able to become notable people because of their association with Chinese martial arts.
Chinese martial arts, also known as Kung Fu, is one of the most notable types of martial arts that has been going on for centuries. It consists of multiple fighting styles that are broken down into common traits or “family”. Kung Fu is a term that means any form of skills that have been acquired or mastered through learning and religious practice.
There are numerous types of Chinese martial arts and various ways to categorize them. One way of identifying the type of martial arts is through separating them into external (physical) and internal (mind and spirit) styles.
External martial arts or hard martial arts is a martial art style with a general focus on using the muscles, improving cardiovascular fitness, and overall physical aspects.
Shaolinquan or Shaolin Kung Fu is one of the oldest, largest and renowned forms of Chinese martial arts and falls under the external category. It uses explosive attacks and holistic practices until a certain “level” of hard physical is achieved.
Is another form of Chinese martial arts with an external style. Formerly called Sanshou, it is also known as Chinese kickboxing and has now become China’s official full-contact combat sport.
The internal style of Kung Fu focuses on cleansing the spirit, strengthening the mind, and improving the qi. This can be practiced through stance training, stretching and strengthening the muscles.
Tai Chi or Shadowboxing is an internal style of Chinese martial arts used for defense and health benefits. The concept of Tai Chi represents the unification of the yin and yang and turning them into one single ultimate.
Although Wing Chun is considered a mix of both internal and external style, it is more leaning to the internal approach of Kung Fu which involves clearing the mind for a more relaxed performance of techniques.
Just like any other form of martial arts, Chinese martial arts were developed for various purposes. The genesis of martial arts was attributed based on the needs for self-defense, hunting, and military trainings, as well as improvement of physical and mental attributes of humanity.
If you put your thoughts into it, there are really a lot of things that we still don’t know about. Chinese martial arts is a complex topic to discuss but a whole lot of new information can be gained if we diligently seek them.
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About the Author:
Colton Woodard is a 7th Degree Black Belt in Kuniba Kai Karate Do and holds the title of Kyoshi as well. He loves to teach Karate, Kobudo, and Iaido and considers himself a lifetime student in pursuit of self improvement in both Martial Arts and in Character. Colton loves to visit Japan and speaks conversational Japanese and can write quite a few Kanji. He is a Karate competitor and coach and loves to exercise and make new memories with people all over the world.
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