The late Great Grandmaster Lam Wing Fay (also known as Lam Sang out of respect from his peers) of Hakka descent immigrated to the United States from China by way of England during the early 1950’s.  He made his home in New York City’s Chinatown where he, for a short period of time, taught at the Sung Tsing Association during the evenings.  By the mid 1950’s, he was invited to teach at the Hip Sing Association at 3 Pell Street.  His stay at Hip Sing was also for a brief while.  Great Grandmaster Lam Sang established his association of the Chinese Freemason Athletic Club and taught there by the late 1950’s at 96 Mott Street, where he accepted his most dedicated disciples.  By 1963, Jook Lum Gee Tong Long Pai was the largest Kung Fu school in Chinatown New York.  He continued teaching until 1969 when he retired to Taiwan.  He returned to New York in 1981 and taught privately until his passing in 1991.

* Biography courtesy of Sifu Norman Chin

Jook Lum (“Bamboo Forest”) Southern Praying Mantis
is one of the four main branches within the Southern Praying Mantis style of Kung Fu and was created in the 18th century by Monk Sam Dot.  The style is native to the Hakka communities of Southern China and is closely associated with other Hakka styles.

Jook Lum Southern Praying Mantis places heavy emphasis on close-range fighting techniques and is known for its short explosive strength and rapid hand movement methods.  The style applies internal and external energy techniques through fluid hand and arm movements targeting specific points of the body.  Leg movements and footwork are designed to quickly move within striking range of an opponent and utilizes low kicks.

Like other southern style Chinese martial arts, Southern Praying Mantis is also characterized by strong stances and a powerful waist to complement fast striking and offensive hand maneuvers.  Training focuses on stances, body forms, hand strikes, sticky/touching hands, and application of Yin energy.  Among the diverse forms, “Sam Bo Gin” is considered one of the most important in the Southern Praying Mantis system.  It is a “Qigong” based form and is the first one to be taught.

A student in our Jook Lum Southern Praying Mantis class will receive instruction in the traditional Praying Mantis forms, two-person defensive/offensive application routines, and weapons such as staff and double butterfly swords.  Class is limited to adult students with foundation skills.

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