Kung Fu Techniques
Kung Fu Techniques
The qigong exercise is not a 'technique' in a true sense. It involves the process of aligning the body
movements, breath and awareness for the purpose of exercise, meditation and healing. The
phenomenon of 'qi' is described as the energy which flows through all the living beings.
There are different styles of kung fu, classified on the basis of schools, sects and families. These
styles have developed over a long period of time and are considered to be important forms of self
defense. The different kung fu styles and techniques can be broadly classified into internal and
external ones. External kung fu styles focus on the development of muscles and improvement in
cardiovascular health. Internal styles manipulate the 'qi'.
Different Styles and Techniques of Kung Fu
The important kung fu fighting styles are explained in the following paragraphs. These techniques
form the basis of the different forms of Chinese martial arts.
The techniques in the monkey style involve monkey or ape-like movements. These techniques are
altogether known as 'Monkey Fist'. Specialty of the monkey style is that a variety of weapons are
used while practicing it. The important techniques of monkey-style kung fu are 'Hou Quan' and 'Tai
Shing Pek Kwar'.
The Hou Quan technique is characterized by acrobatic movements like front flips, sideways flips,
back flips, hand stands, back handsprings, forward lunges, walking on hands, spinning on the butt,
backward lunges, etc. Hand strikes include clawing monkey-fist and slapping. Different monkey
expressions are also included in this technique.
In the stone monkey technique, you get prepared to receive blows on the body in exchange of the
opportunity to target the weaker spots of the opponent. Attempts are made to look out for weak
spots without falling for the temptation of hitting at open spots.
This technique is also known as tall monkey and emphasis is placed on keeping the body upright.
Hitting at pressure points is also a feature of standing monkey.
The essence of the lost monkey technique is that you deceive the opponent by acting like you are
confused and 'lost'. You should retaliate when the opponent is least aware of the moves you are
going to make.
Anger and ferocity are the qualities depicted with the help of this technique. Bringing down the
opponent by means of grappling is an important move made in this technique.
This technique is similar to the lost monkey, however, it should be studied separately. In this
technique, you fake your emotions in order to lure the opponent to launch an attack. Only when the
opponent drops his guard, should attacks be made.
The praying mantis techniques are categorized as 'Northern Praying Mantis' and 'Southern Praying
Northern Praying Mantis
This technique evolved in Shandong, a northeastern Chinese province. The Northern praying mantis
involves the techniques of deflecting attacks that are perpendicular, with circular or whip-like
movements. The praying mantis hook, made with 1-3 fingers is used for attacking the eyes and also
for blocking the attacks of opponents.
Southern Praying Mantis
It was created by the Hakka people who belong to southwest China. This technique is different from
the Northern Praying Mantis and lays emphasis on close-range fighting. The use of low kicks is
limited and hand movements are given more importance.
Quick and powerful moves form an important feature of the dragon style of kung fu. The different
techniques involving clawing, fist and palm are given importance in comparison to jumps and kicks.
The dragon style, which is also known as 'Lung Ying' employs different techniques for crippling the
opponent to such an extent that he is not able to fight anymore. Damaging the joints of opponents
also is one of the important techniques of dragon style. A dragon symbolizes internal strength. The
Dragon style thus, combines internal strength with external strength in order to make extremely
Snake style techniques are used to bring fluidity in movements. This fluidity which resembles the
movements of snake is useful in entwining the body around that of the opponent's. It helps in
defending ourselves in a better manner. The attacking moves can also be made from different angles
by adopting this technique. In the snake style, one doesn't use closed fists while fighting. Not closing
the fists allows making more effective finger strikes and chops.
The main features of the tiger style are acrobatic movements, a wide stance, extensive footwork and
a unique fist position. In this fist position, the thumb should be curled just like other fingers of the
hand. Generally the thumb is wrapped around fingers; however, in this position it should just be
curled. Palm strikes along with fu mei geuk tiger tail kick form the specialty of this style. This
technique brings performers of kung fu to realize their internal power; however, it can be achieved
only after enough practice. The tiger style is all about force and power. There are certain kinds of
sounds made by the kung fu practitioner in order to get rid of carbon dioxide from the system; such
kind of sounds help in replacing the carbon dioxide with oxygen. In this style, one has to target the
opponent's face, neck, wrists, arms and groin.
This kung fu style was developed by Fang Qiniang, a female martial artist. Intricate hand techniques
and close range fighting are the important features of the crane style; these actions resemble the
movements of pecking birds. The flying crane technique employs flapping movement of wings.
This style of kung fu is known for lightning fast movements. Therefore, your footwork should be
quick. In the leopard style, the fist plays an important role in targeting the throat, groin and solar
plexus region. Along with quick footwork, firm stances are needed for making the required moves.
It is a kung fu style known for soft blocks and hard strikes. The Uechi-ryu karate technique is based
on Pangai-noon. Shu Shiwa was the founder of the Pangai-noon style of kung fu.
The kung fu techniques mentioned in the article give us an idea about the highly effective methods
of self-defense used in Chinese martial arts. These styles require a lot of practice and dedication to