What Is Kung Fu ?
The term "Kung Fu" refers to the martial arts of China. Kung Fu originated in a
place called the Shaolin Temple, where monks practiced Kung Fu for health and
self-defense during their quest for enlightenment.In its original meaning,
kung fu can refer to any skill achieved through hard work and practice,
not necessarily martial arts.
Speaking about martial arts, even today many people are confused and never understand what martial arts means to them. A lot of people still believe “monkey style,” “drunken mantis style,” whatever style you think of, can be used in a real fight. That’s wrong. In a real fight, there is no style. You knock someone down as soon as possible – that’s a fight. You can use just one finger to knock people down, your palms, fist, elbow, shoulder, hip, knee, foot, head - there are no rules in a real fight.
The first Shaolin temple was a Buddhist monastery built in 377 A.D. in the Henan province of China. In 527 A.D. a Buddhist prince, Bodhidharma, or Da Mo in Chinese, traveled to the temple for religious teaching, but found the monks weak and in poor health. To find a way to give the monks strength and vitality, Da Mo locked himself in a room for nine years of meditation. His resulting work, Yi Jin Jing, a series of exercises which developed strength, vitality, and internal energy, is considered the original Shaolin martial art.
Historically, Kung Fu in China was an integral part in the education of scholars and the leaders of government. The Chinese people placed great value in the practice of Kung Fu because they felt it taught respect, patience, humility, and morality.
Kung Fu is a general term which includes hundreds of styles of Chinese martial arts. Some examples of Kung Fu styles are Long Fist, Eagle Claw, and Taiji Quan.