Wushu is literally translated as “martial arts” and, when written, is comprised of the two Chinese characters “wu” (martial/military) and “shu” (arts). Chinese characters are based on pictograph, where words were originally represented by their physical appearance. The character for “wu” is the result of two simpler characters, when separated, has been interpreted as “self-defense”.
The term “wushu” comes from Mandarin Chinese, the national language of China, while the term “kung-fu” comes from Cantonese, a dialect of the Chinese language, and both are often used interchangeably to refer to Chinese martial arts in general in English. It was created in the People's Republic of China after 1949, in an attempt to nationalize the practice of traditional Chinese martial arts. Wushu is often used to refer to modern competitive taolu (choreographed forms) and sanda (sparring/fighting) while kung-fu refers to the classical counterpart from which wushu is derived.
The Chinese martial arts are made up of numerous styles which are often categorized into internal (nei jia) and external (wai jia) arts. Internal Chinese martial arts focus on the use of the relaxed body and is used to describe styles such as Tai Chi Quan, Bagua Zhang, Hsing-I, and Baji. While typical physical characteristics of external Chinese martial arts include physical development, speed, and explosive movements as is found in Long Fist, Southern Fist, Ground Tumbling Boxing, and Eagle Claw - both internal and external arts require coordination of the mind and body, and it has been said that they have the same destination while simply taking different paths.
For children in their formative years, self-discipline is important and by implementing repetition, hard work, rhythm, details, and rules, wushu is a fantastic way to improve the learning process. Wushu will provide an activity to do all year round to compliment your other seasonal physical activities and help you become a well-rounded individual since it requires thought in addition to its physical components. Because wushu is skill-based, it is a great way for friends and families with diverse physical talents and abilities to participate in together. It is also an amazing way to develop friendships with interesting people that can last a lifetime.
For professionals who are at your desks or vehicles all day, exercise is absolutely essential. In addition to looking better, exercise has been shown to stimulate chemicals in your brain which can also make you feel better. Numerous studies show that exercise helps to combat depression while improving self-esteem. Wushu can also strengthen your heart and lungs; help improve the quality of your sleep; improve your concentration and focus at work; and has been known to prevent type II diabetes, osteoporosis, and types of cancer. Besides improving the quality and longevity of your life, wushu is simply fun!
For athletes, wushu is a powerful way to cross-train because it is a comprehensive art form that involves running, jumping, kicking, punching, flexibility, explosive linear and circular movements, and much more that will make you the most effective athlete you can be. Additionally, the mental focus, emotional clarity, and physical awareness will enable you to reach your full potential as an athlete.
For performers, your presentation and being in shape are both imperative. Wushu’s performance aspects prepare you to be in a highly competitive position if you would like to be considered for parts involving action sequences, while helping you get in shape like a top athlete. Wushu training helped make Jet Li, Jackie Chan, Keanu Reeves, Jason Statham, Donnie Yen, Zoe Saldana, Carrie-Ann Moss, Milla Jovovich, and Uma Thurman international super-stars.
Who can do wushu?
Anybody can do wushu! Wushu is skill-based, so regardless of your age, gender, physical attributes, or experience, you can be taught wushu through our systematic teaching process. To find out how you can achieve your goals, Contact Us NOW!
Long Fist: This northern style is a synthesis of traditional styles including Cha Quan, Hua Quan, Hong Quan, and Shaolin Quan. Long fist (Chang Quan) characteristics include long-range attacks, running, jumping, flexibility, turning, and varied stance heights. This is the most popular style of modern wushu and is used to lay a strong foundation for wushu martial artists.
Southern Fist: This southern style is a synthesis of traditional styles including Hong Jia Quan (Hung-Gar Kuen), Cai Li Fo Quan (Choy Lay Fut), and Yong Chun Quan (Wing Chun). Southern Fist (Nan Quan) practitioners develop strong legs from low kicks and low stable stances as well as dexterity through versatile hand techniques.
Tai Chi Quan: Literally translated, this style is “The Grand Ultimate Fist”. This style is characterized by deliberately slow and relaxed movement where the practitioners use the force of the opponent as leverage. Though this is popularly seen as exercise for the elderly, sensitivity exercises such as push hands (Tui Shou) can teach the martial artist to apply the teachings of this style practically.
Eagle Claw: The Eagle Claw (Ying Zhao) style imitates the animal it is named after. This style includes the grace, stillness, and readiness of the eagle waiting to attack, while simultaneously displaying its ferocity. The Eagle Claw practitioner will develop flexibility, speed, and explosiveness as this style includes jumping, high kicks, quick hand techniques, demonstrations of balance, and extremely low stances.
Ground Tumbling Boxing: Ground Tumbling Boxing (Ditang Quan) includes attacks while somersaulting, spinning, turning, flipping, and falling. Many of these falls are used to employ the body in the takedown of an opponent or taking the opponent down while from the ground. Ground Tumbling Boxing practitioners will strengthen their bones, muscles, and sinews while accumulating knowledge in self-defense through training this style.
Drunken Boxing: This unconventional method of boxing (Zui Quan) may be the original rope-a-dope where the apparently drunk practitioner deliberately demonstrates weakness and vulnerability, but is actually capable of outstanding footwork, attacks from every angle, and sudden falls which leverage the body in takedowns. This style will develop the martial artist’s entire anterior and posterior chain, increase flexibility, and hone one’s coordination.
Broadsword: The broadsword (Dao), known as the “Marshall of All Weapons”, is considered a short weapon with a blade that is sharp only on one side and often associated with the tiger. This weapon was commonly used in the military and is known for its ferocity. This weapon implements attacks with the sharp side and point, while using the other side for blocks and wraps that remain close to the body.
Straightsword: The straightsword (Jian), known as “The Gentleman/Scholar of All Weapons”, is considered a short weapon with a blade that is sharp on both sides. This weapon is known for its elegance, agility, and flexibility explaining why it is often associated with the mythical phoenix.
Staff: The staff (Gun), known as “The Father of All Weapons”, is considered a long weapon which is usually made of wood, but is sometimes made of metal. The fundamentals of this weapon can be found in most other weapons and is characterized by its sweeps, spins, pokes, and slams. The staff implements many offensive and defensive maneuvers simultaneously.
Spear: The spear (Qiang), known as “The King of All Weapons”, is considered a long weapon which is made of wood and a metal blade for its tip. Because of this weapon’s long-range abilities and its dangerous bladed tip, it developed a dangerous reputation on the battlefield. The power, flexibility of the weapon / practitioner, and lightness of footwork are why the spear has always been likened to the mythical flying dragon.
Nine-Section Whip Chain: The Nine-Section Whip-Chain (Jiu Jie Bian) is considered a traditional flexible weapon with a handle and nine steel sections with a flagged sharp end. This weapon is characterized by its speed, fluidity, and wraps around body parts. It is believed to originally be effective for scaring horses, used as a hidden weapon, and to strike around obstacles.
Our goal-oriented curriculum is designed to take the practitioner from the beginner level to the advanced level through a systematic process. The sash system encourages the practitioner to be focused, motivated, and responsible while developing a sense of achievement. Below are short descriptions of the curriculum at each level.
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