The History and Development of Kung Fu

Many people used the term martial arts to refer to different sports like karate, tae kwon do, jiu-jitsu, judo, Kung Fu, and other forms of these sports. Today, one can see the influence that these sports have as more and more schools have been established to provide training to both amateurs and advanced practitioners such as the Martial Arts classes Washington DC, and other private and public martial arts schools. 


General Background 

Kung Fu, in particular has a great history and development that has formed primarily in China. It was originated and created not as a form of os sports but a way of life and survival needed in the primitive ways of like in China over a million years ago. It required basic skills in chopping, cleaving, and stabbing for defense and offense to protect oneself from any harmful elements in the surrounding. Later on in the Xia and Yuan Dynasty, Kung Fu was formed and developed as fighting skills and reached its heights in the Ming and Qing Dynasties. Today, it is seen as general Chinese martial arts that develop harmonies between mind and body.  



Kung Fu was originated in the slave society and was later developed to equip soldiers on the battlefield in the Xia dynasty. In the Shang and Zhou dynasties, this practical function of Chinese Kung Fu was made consistent when it was used to train soldiers and enhance the army’s morale. Later int the rule of Qi Huanghong, martial arts contests were held for entertainment and of a selection of heroes.  



Kung Fu was later developed in 221 BC and 1911 when the plain of China was unified by the Emperor Qin Shihuang. Kung Fu, which was utilized to train soldiers for battles, was then integrated with new modifications and was later called Hong Fist. It was during the Qin and Han dynasties that sword dance, fencing, wrestling, and sword fighting became popular in China that also influenced Chinese Kung Fu.  


The Song Dynasty made some influences that led to the integration of southern and northern martial arts. However, in the Yuan Dynasty, Han people were forbidden to practice Kung Fu. The people were forced to gather secretly meet to practice the martial arts in hidden sight. Jeuyuan, the abbot of Shaolin Temple during these times achieved to create the Seventy-Two Fists which is known as Huaquan and later learned how to execute other advanced skills. 


In the Qing Dynasty, the Han people were still not permitted to practice Kung Fu that led to the decline in its practitioners in the Shaolin Temple, but small gatherings continued in the folk people. After the 1840 Sino-British Opium War, many martial arts groups in the common communities in China stood up to prevent the British armies to enter and invade Guangdong.  


It was in the Republic of  China that the first non-governmental organizations of Kung Fu were established that led to the spreading and branching off to different fields in neighboring countries like Malaysia, Vietnam, Macau, Hongkong, Singapore, and others.  

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