Wushu in China


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Rambler's Top100


Probably the fact of Chinese martial arts beginning had been never officially noted down. Fight techniques were developing during long period in fights either between people and animals or different tribes. Experience was collected through years and various techniques passed through generations.



The old China

Old China...

During many centuries they used miscellaneous types of weapon. However if you lost your weapon you had to fight hand-bared. Various schools of martial arts took their beginning there. Many schools and styles created new forms imitating grapples of different animals like tigers, panthers, monkeys and bears; birds like eagles, cranes and roosters: snakes and insects like mantis, etc. Chinese people considered animals to have natural martial qualities and abilities. Thatís why they took imitation as the best foundation for martial arts.



Bronze martial artistsí gallery

...the next several hundreds of years

As far first martial techniques appeared long ago, step by step they become a part of culture. As well as they were influenced by many other elements of Chinese culture. For Chinese neighbors, this country was well-developed cultural center, so that many things were borrowed from there. In their turn Chinese people spread themselves all over the Asia bringing in their own culture. Thus Chinese martial arts could influence Asian countries.



The Shaolin Temple

Temple Shaolin

Chinese emperors encouraged the development of martial arts in military field, the rising level of their fighting abilities, including hand-to-hand fighting skills. It was almost necessary for officials to be skilled in fighting as well as military people had to be of high intellect. Thatís why bronze statues had epigraphs like, ďan educated man not experienced in martial arts can not have authority in the Heavenly EmpireĒ.



A Shaolin Monk

Shaolin Quan

In 1911 the Tsin dynasty was destroyed as a result of the Sun Jatsen's revolution. During that time all wushu kinds and styles revived. Owing to freedom and Chinese society changing many hidden schools came up and became open, and their secrets became available for wide range of people.



Ancient books

Old books...

Since 1920s to 1930s a great number of books on martial arts were published. But this period is also known for the civil war when Chan Kaishi made an effort to unite the country. President Chan Kaishi ordered to start the Nankil Central Institute Goshu (1928) to give to Chinese martial arts an official status. Many famous masters were invited to work there. The traditional name "Wushu" ("the martial techniques") was changed to the Chzhungowshu ("the Chinese martial arts") or briefly Goshu ("the national techniques"). That was the first time when all Chinese martial arts styles had been gathered in China for experience interchange. Unfortunately in 1937, after having whole three graduations, the Second World War started and the Institute was closed.

In 1949 wushu was completely forbidden in China. Cloisters were closed and some friars moved to Taiwan, the USA and other countries where they started their own schools. Later on, wushu trainings were organized at the National Institute of Athletics. In this organization Wushu was taught in a cut way to avoid the possible martial artistsí collusion against the government. Thus wushu took many gymnastic attributes. The situation hadnít been changed up to 80s.




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