Wood Carving Kung Fu

In keeping with our martial art’s Chinese heritage and their definition of the term “kung fu”, which refers to any study, learning, or practice that requires patience, energy, and time to complete…. this Chinese wood carving artist has significant kung fu.

“One tree, four years of work and an indescribable amount of talent: that’s what it took to create this incredible masterpiece. A famous Chinese wood carver chopped down a single tree and tirelessly worked on it for over four years to make this piece.

It all started out with a simple tree trunk…

Then Zheng Chunhui, a famous wood carver, spent over four years creating this masterpiece.

The carving is based on the famous Chinese painting “Along the River During the Qingming Festival.”

The original artwork was created over 1,000 years ago.

The piece won the Guinness World Record for the longest wooden carving and measures over 40ft (it is 2.286 meters long, is 3.075 meters tall at it highest point, and is also 2.401 meters wide).

The intricate carvings of daily life in ancient China are so detailed and perfect, they could drop your jaw.

It’s no surprise that this incredible work of art is drawing so much attention. It’s amazing, but not just because it’s so big, but also because it’s so incredibly detailed.

Source:  http://www.viralnova.com/tree-trunk-carving/

Science of Martial Arts

Brea Shaolin Kung Fu

Brea Shaolin Kung Fu

“The true science of martial arts means practicing them in such a way that they will be useful at any time, and to teach them in such a way that they will be useful in all things.”

Miyamoto Musashi (1584-1645), founder of Niten-ryū style of swordsmanship.  The Book of Five Rings Trans. D.E. Tarver

Flexibly Rooted

Brea Shaolin Kung Fu - Flexibly Rooted
Parents take note – there are three aspects of kung-fu training that enabled our students to do well in life.  These aspects revolve around being “flexibly rooted”.  Through the years, the school has seen firsthand these three things enable our younger students with the knowledge and discipline to become highly competent and confident adults.
  1. Consistent and enduring training.   This includes not just a physical level, but also a discriminating use of time and experience that reflect in their pursuit of education and work ethic.
  2. Awareness through self respect.  As they learned to push themselves and achieve their desired goals, they grew to respect not only others and their kung- fu training , but they grew to respect themselves.  A sense of confidence and ability that they learned to apply in a full range of different circumstances.  A learned habit they would call on time and again in hard times as well as good to know they can accomplish anything because they persevered in their kung fu training.
  3. Through self effort they learned self-discipline and self-efficacy.  Nothing was given to them – they had to earn it through toil and persistence.  And in the process they learned never to give up, no matter how hard it was.
Throughout the history of this school, the use of these kung-fu principles have not only come to bare in our young students future academic and professional careers, but also in their personal sense of themselves.  Whether it be with their wives, kids, friends, work associates, or strangers, they stand flexibly rooted!

In the News…

Brea Shaolin Kung Fu was recently interviewed as a subject of an article published in the CSUF newspaper, The Daily Titan.  We know Master Jeu Susing as Master Bob Hsing…

Tai Chi Can Help Students Reduce Stress


Students at the Brea Shaolin Kung Fu studio focus their energy into their balance. Tai chi helps with movement of the body and lower body strength.  Chu-Ling yee / Daily Titan

Students at the Brea Shaolin Kung Fu studio focus their energy into their balance. Tai chi helps with movement of the body and lower body strength.
Chu-Ling yee / Daily Titan

Students suffering from stress and are overwhelmed by school may want to try tai chi. Tai chi, an ancient kung fu fighting defense, can help relieve stress and lower blood pressure.

Tai chi originated as a form of martial arts, but due to its health benefits, tai chi is now taught as an exercise too.

The exercise can ease tension, strengthen the lower body and help blood flow more easily throughout the body. Tai chi provides a workout without the intensity of a regular cardio workout. The movements are typically circular and never forced.

Master Charles Robert, owner of Brea Shaolin Kung Fu, said tai chi helps the thighs act as a second heart. Tai chi movements help muscles in the thighs contract, causing less strain and work for the heart to pump blood. Robert has practiced tai chi for 20 years and his studio teaches more of an internal and competition form.

Internal focuses on breathing and less of muscle power to exert force. Competition form of tai chi is not fighting, but it is judged on timing and technique. Tai chi instead focuses on the little movements of the body.

There were originally five styles of tai chi: Yang, Wu, Chen, Hao and Combination. Years ago, an assembly gathered in China and decided to standardize the five different forms of tai chi to create a competition form.

Anybody can begin taking tai chi for its health benefits and further their skills by tackling competitive aspects of the practice.

Master Jeu Susing who teaches tai chi at the studio begins teaching students the basic Twenty-Four Movement, which consists of 24 separate movements. The competition forms of movements are titled by numbers of steps in them.

“The teacher is the key,” Susing said. Average students are unable to reproduce the same results by themselves. Students are limited to what they know.

Master Susing teaches students not only how to do the movements, but also how to improve their chi.

One of the main reasons why tai chi is effective in helping to relieve stress is attributed to the deep breathing that is involved. When students are focused in what they are doing and are breathing correctly, they can find peace with themselves. They focus on themselves and forget about the situations that are causing them stress.

Stress causes high blood pressure, chest pain and fatigue, according to the Mayo Clinic. By taking tai chi, people can help prevent future illnesses. Tai chi has also been proven to  help ease fibromyalgia and arthritis.

Doug Robson, 66, said tai chi has helped him with arthritis and keep his body limber. Robson attends classes at the studio twice a week.

Tai chi eases the joints and lubricates them with all the movements they do. There is no aggressive jumping involved that could harm the bones.

Another benefit of the exercise is that no one is there to scream at the students, because it is a relaxing environment.

The lower part of the body also gets stronger since tai chi requires people to move their hips and use their legs. There is a misconception about tai chi that it is a slow-paced exercise most suited to seniors. Robson said anyone can do this form of exercise.

“I can do just about any form and it will start calming me down,” Robson said.

He recommends practicing tai chi for 15 to 30 minutes a day. Susing said people can see improvement within three months.

Using the Mirror

Brea Shaolin Kung Fu - Using the Mirror

Brea Shaolin Kung Fu – Using the Mirror

The mirror can be helpful for developing your kung fu ability.

Before or after class, you typically have time to practice anything you like:  kicks, stances, forms, chin na, san shou, etc.  By paying attention in class, you see how higher rank perform certain movements.  Perhaps you had a movement that was taught or corrected in class by Sifu.  The mirror let’s you judge for yourself just how well your movement stacks up.  Is your technique well balanced?  Are your stances low and strong?  Are your kicks and punches fast and sharp?  Is your posture correct or are you leaning, tense or just off?  The mirror and your honest judgment will give you the answers.

During class, the mirror is helpful in a different way.  Like the above, you can measure how high, fast and powerful your kicks are getting, how your stances compare to the rest of the class, etc.  However, during class, the mirror can be used when being taught new movements and greater details of old movements.  You can see multiple angles via the reflection and see things you might not have seen otherwise.  The mirror can also provide you with better peripheral vision to ensure you don’t hit or get hit by others.  It can even help you see others if you get confused or stuck – hopefully that doesn’t happen.

The mirrors can do all of that for you and more – the only thing you need to do is use them properly (i.e. not a great idea to look at yourself in the mirror when sparring and definitely not when you are standing at attention).  And one more thing, clean the sweat off of them after class every now and then.