Traditional Kung Fu
“Wu” = Military or Martial,”Shu”= Art
(Chinese: 功夫; pinyin: gōngfu; “Hard Work”)
Traditional Kung-Fu is the basis of Contemporary Wushu. “Kung-Fu”, which translates literally as “Hard Work” is the popular term in Southern China and the western world that refers to the Chinese Martial Arts. When first brought to the western world by the likes of Bruce Lee, the term stuck and has been used as recognition to the Chinese Martial Arts but is now used more often to relate to the traditional forms of the Chinese Martial Arts than it is to relate to competitive style “Wushu”.
While Wushu as a competitive sport encompasses a very detailed structure of rules and regulations, Traditional Kung-Fu is identified through lineage and history of both the teachers of the styles and the documented origins of the styles. Typically created and taught through the generations by family clans and “disciples” of the arts, Traditional Kung-Fu or Traditional Wushu reflects a great deal upon the direct applications of movements and techniques for combat and practical use. Many of the movements have traditionally been based on animals and elements of the earth.
Currently, Traditional Kung Fu is as popular as ever and are the most practiced forms of Wushu in the world. There are literally hundreds of styles and thousands of lineages to each form or style of Kung-Fu, which is one of the reasons contemporary wushu was created. To have a structured and widely recognized system of coaching and training the Chinese Martial Arts.
Popular forms and styles of Traditional Kung-Fu or Traditional Wushu include:
– Hung Gar
– Wing Chun
– Choy Lay Fut
– Praying Mantis
– Pi Gua (Eight Diagram)
– Eagle Claw, and many more…
Many of these forms of Traditional Kung-Fu have also been adapted into the competitions of Contemporary Wushu, whereas the most prominent movements and techniques have been utilized to create standard or defined routines under the contemporary system.