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14 Days Wudang Kung Fu Training in Hubei, China

  • Sanfeng Academy, Tongshen Gou, Mount Wu Dang Tourism Economic Special Zone, Shi Yan, Hubei, China

Kung Fu School in China

Learn Wudang Kung Fu traditionally. Study the basics and learn more about it from its birth place. Join Wudang Sanfeng Academy, where all people are welcome to learn Wudang Kung Fu. May you be a beginner in the art of Kung Fu or a highly experienced one, wanting to improve more on your craft. Come and join our school where these things dont matter but your will to learn.

Highlights

  • Study Wudang Kung Fu
  • Study plan according to your needs and goals
  • Daily Wudang Kung Fu training Friday to Wednesday
  • Chinese language classes three times a week
  • Daily breakfast, lunch, and dinner
  • Onsite translators available
  • 13 nights accommodation
  • 12 days with instruction
  • Chinese (mandarin), English
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The dormitory

The Sanfeng Academy provides a variety of accommodation options. Most rooms are designed for double occupancy. Some have private baths and other rooms are arranged in suites with a shared bath for the suite.

The Taihe building also has several rooms with full size beds for couples and rooms with three beds. The building is of recent construction and has lots of light and fresh air. The rooms are also equipped with heat and air conditioning. The rooms at the back of the building look out over the orange groves. Both western and Chinese style bathroom facilities are available.

Dormitory's rules

Any actions that may cause damages to the dormitorys property such as removal, alteration or modification of furniture or facilities including towel, Turkish towel, pillow, etc.are strictly forbidden.

Any electrical appliances deemed to be a fire hazard such as immersion heater or hot plates are not allowed in dormitory rooms.

Any kinds of activities involved in vice, namely: smoking, drinking alcohol, drugs and gambling in dormitory rooms is strictly forbidden.

Non-resident students or visitors are not permitted to stay overnight in dormitory rooms.

No fighting, unruly behavior, disturbing noise, harassment of any kind

No pets or animals of any nature are permitted in any dormitory unit or in any dormitory facilities.

Residents are not permitted to let fall or throw any objects out of the dormitory windows, ledges or balconies.

Storing and possession of hazardous items such as guns, explosive devices, firearms, or fireworks that can cause harm to the dormitorys property is strictly prohibited.

Student residents are not allowed to stay overnight off-dormitory without prior permission from the dormitory advisor. Both female and male student residents shall return to the dormitory no later than 10:30 p.m. Students are not allowed to leave academy before 6:30 a.m. or after 10:30 p.m. If you really have an urgent need, please contact dormitory advisor - Lyn and get permission.

Student residents are responsible for keeping their rooms in a sanitary condition. No items should be left or discarded in front of the rooms.

Student residents shall not violate any other rules established by the dormitory.

Theft of any kind or possession of stolen property is strictly prohibited.

Dormitory, main front gate, located at the dormitory entryway

  • Opening hour: 06:30 a.m.
  • Closing hour: 10:30 p.m.

Entrance - exit rules during closing hours

Residents who need to leave the dormitory earlier than the opening hour or return to the dormitory later than the closing hour may get permission from dormitory advisors-Yuan.

Residents, without advisors permission, wishing to leave or return to the dormitory other than at the opening-closing hours shall get permission from dormitory advisors-Yuan.

Summer daily schedule Friday to Wednesday

04:50 - 05:00 Get up

05:00 - 07:20 Training

07:40 - 08:30 Breakfast

08:30 - 11:00 Training

11:30 - 13:00 Lunch

13:00 - 15:30 Rest

15:30 - 17:00 Review

17:30 - 18:30 Dinner

18:30 - 21:00 Training

22:00 - 04:50 Bedtime

Winter daily schedule Friday to Wednesday

05:30 - 05:40 Get up

05:40 - 07:20 Training

07:30 - 08:30 Breakfast

08:30 - 11:00 Training

11:30 - 13:00 Lunch

13:00 - 15:30 Rest

15:30 - 17:00 Review

17:30 - 18:30 Dinner

18:30 - 20:30 Training

22:00 - 05:30 Bedtime

Kung Fu training styles

Wudang Kung Fu

Wudang Kung Fus long history

Wudang Kung Fu is an important style of Chinese martial arts with a very long history. Wudang Kung Fu comprises many training methods designed for health and longevity while at the same time developing many effective fighting skills. It is not just a school of martial arts, but a complete system for both self-defense and health preservation.

Wudang Kung Fu cannot be separated from Daoist culture. Wudang Kung Fu has its roots in the fertile soil of the thousands of years' of ancient Chinese civilization. It encompasses ancient Chinese philosophical theories, combining traditional concepts of Taiji, Yin and Yang, Wu Xing (Five Elements), and Ba Gua (Eight Trigrams) with boxing theory and skills, training principles and attack strategies.

Wudang Kung Fu is a way of studying the laws of life and nature. One may say that Wudang Kung Fu crystallizes the Daoist exploration of life. It is said that Zhang Sanfeng, the founder of Wudang Kung Fu, was cultivating his spiritual energy in the mountains when he witnessed a fight between a magpie and a snake.

The magpie was flying up and down to attack and the snake was shaking its body and raising its head in defense. The scene inspired Zhang Sanfeng and provided him with a general understanding of Taiji theory. He then proceeded to create Wudang Internal Kung Fu. He found in the battle between the two creatures the following principles: One must overcome the strong in a gentle way and one wins by striking only when the enemy has made its move.

Having developed and been supplemented by many masters through the years, Wudang Kung Fu now has several different schools and styles which include Taiji, Xingyi (Form and Will Boxing), Ba Gua Zhang (Eight Trigram Palm), light body Kung Fu, hard Qi Gong, and many other styles of Qi Gong. Wudang Kung Fu has come from deep in the mountains and become an important school of Chinese martial arts.

Lineages - Master Zhang Sanfeng

Zhang San Feng was born Zhang Jun Bao in Liao Dong during the late Yuan Dynasty. His family lived in Longhu Hill, Jiangxi Province. His grandfather was an expert in reading fortunes by watching the stars and constellations. Before Zhang Jun Bao was born, his grandfather predicted there would be good fortune in Liao Dong, and so he moved there. At the age of five, Zhang Jun Bao suffered from a severe illness and lost his eyesight.

His grandfather heard that some nearby Daoist priests had an incredible way of curing illness; so, he took Zhang Jun Bao there. Within a week, he was cured and had regained his eyesight.

The Daoist priest loved Zhang Jun Bao and took him as a disciple, teaching him both writing and martial arts. Like all fathers, Zhang Jun Baos father wished him every success. Zhang Jun Bao was expected to take the state exam for a career in the government.

However, he was not interested in becoming a politician or minister. He loved martial arts and visited many ancient temples. Later in life, he traveled to Yan Jing and took up a local government post through the relationship of a good friend. But Zhang Jun Bao soon quit and returned to Liao Dong where he spent most of his time in a deserted temple.

One day at the temple, a Daoist priest approached him. They talked throughout the night, and treated each other as old friends, regretting not having met earlier. As they parted, Zhang Jun Bao wished to be living a life of solitude, wanting to be free like the clouds and birds. He spent the next few years traveling around, learning martial arts and becoming famous.

When he was visiting Shan Xi Province, he realized that the Daoist priest he met earlier was Qui Chu Ji, the disciple of the renowned Wang Chong Yang of the famed Eight Immortals. Zhang Jun Bao moved to the Jin Tai Temple in Bao Ji and was accepted by the respected Daoist Huo Long as a disciple.

He became versatile in Daoism and named himself San Feng , which means heaven and earth. (In the 8 trigrams, San represents heaven, or qian . Feng represents earth, or kun ). Zhang San Feng came and went without shadow. Settling down in Wudang Mountain, he was inspired by watching a snake fight a bird.

By incorporating his training in Wushu, Daoist internal alchemy, and Qi Gong, Zhang San Feng created Nei Jia Quan (Internal Martial Arts), which was later called Taijiquan or the Tai Ji Quan 13 Style. The Tai Ji Quan 13 has formed the basis of Wudang Internal Martial Arts, often referred to as Daoist Gong Fu or Taoist Kung Fu.

The Wudang San Feng Pai, meaning Wudang San Feng Sect or lineage, continues the traditions and teachings of our patriarch and the teachings of his successive followers. Wudang Internal Kung fu is based upon the principles of Infinity (Yi Wu Ji), Supreme Ultimate (Tai Ji), and Two Extremes (Liang Yi).

Over the years the combining of these principles a variety of styles have developed and flourished, most notably: Baguazhang (Eight Trigrams Palm), Xingyi quan (Form and Intention Fist), Liangyi quan or Taiyi quan (Two Extremes Fist), Xuangong quan (Dark Gate Fist), Baxian (Eight Immortals Style), Fuhu quan (Taming the Tiger Fist) and more.

Kung Fu weapons

Baxian cudgel/staff (eight immortal cudgel): It has 61 postures in all. This work is a treasure of the Wudang Eight Immortal School which is only handed down secretly to specially-nominated disciples. It was created in reference to the features of the eight Taoist immortals, namely, Zhong Hanli, He Xiangu, Lu Dongbin, Han Xiangzi, Lan Caihe, Cao Guojiu, Tie Guaili, and Zhang Guolao. It is told in legend that Zhong Hanli undid her clothes to sleep; He Xiangu caught the stars and the moon with her cudgel; Lu Dongbin seemed to get drunk; Han Xiangzi played the flute; Lan Caihe painted flowers; Cao Guojiu recited poetry; Tie Guaili descended from the clouds with one leg; Zhang Guolao rode a donkey facing backwards. From such descriptions, people can vividly visualize how this cudgel play presents its contents.

Baxian sword play: It has 81 postures in all. Baxian Sword originated from the Stances of Eight immortals. This movement synchronizes sword and body incorporated into one unit and embeds intention in body movement. It is characterized by simplicity, the combined force of hardness and softness, and imitates the stances of the eight immortals.

Chiwu spear play: It has 72 postures in all. It is said that spear is the king of weapons. (Earlier called the sword the king of weapons.) Many famous generals in antiquity were skillful using spears. Once mastered, the body and the spear cannot be separated from each other, and the spear moves in harmony with the body and vice versa. The Ziwu Spear can be used to parry overhead, press downward, prick forward, and punch backward. It is an ideal weapon for both attack and defense. The whole set of movements is very smooth and swift, as though a supple dragon were playing with water.

Easy shovel: It has 72 postures in all. The easy shovel is a unique weapon of Taoist martial art. It is somewhat similar to the Buddhist crescent shovel and is a must for Taoists when they travel. It is said that the easy shovel was passed down by Lao Tsu. Lao Tsu left 81 shovels to encourage his disciples to cultivate their moral character attentively, in a hope that they would do good and eliminate evil. The Easy Shovel is a weapon incorporating cudgel, fork, and spear. Its main movements are pressing, parrying, pricking, shoveling, wiping, and patting. Such art looks magnificent applied with masterful skill.

Fochen play (horse-tail whip): It has 55 postures in all. This weapon has the reputation for being aloof from the mortal world. It is a soft weapon which is very portable and easily carried. The movements in this form are mainly cut, pull, shake, and sweep. When it is performed well, people are often surprised by the sensation that they resemble the wind sweeping the ground. It combines features of sword and broadsword with the styles of whip and dart, thus fully representing the perfect combination of hard and the soft, launching all attacks subtly but not overlooking defense.

Harrow play: It has 56 postures in all. A harrow can weigh more than 50 kilograms and is a unique weapon in Taoist Kung Fu. It is a mixture of broadsword, spear and cudgel. Some people believe that for a harrow practitioner, in front it is a spear for him to wield; to the sides, two tulwars; and behind, a rake is supplied; and in addition to the combination of the three, a cudgel is in the middle communing with the three. The main movements for this weapon are pricking, liao (upper cutting), mixing, and raking.

Longhua sword play: It has 71 postures in all. As part of the northern Wudang Kung Fu lineage, Longhua Sword Play features the typical movements of a dragon. When performed perfectly, it looks as though the dragon was passing through the clouds, suddenly rushing into the peaks or unexpectedly darting into the bottom of a canyon. Throughout the entire form, the movements are perfectly coherent and full of vigor.

Spring and autumn broadsword: It has 48 movements in all. As a single weapon form, the broadsword enjoys the same popularity as the spear. Where the latter is often connected with the magic of dragon, the former is commonly related to the courage of a tiger. There is a legend: Guan Yu, a famous general in the Three Kingdom period, was an expert in using the broadsword. So he named it scimitar. He also liked to read the History of Spring and Autumn Period and wanted to follow the example to become a hero of that time. Therefore, people named it the Spring and Autumn Broadsword. The main movements for this work are cutting, liao (upper cutting), wiping, and patting. When practiced well, the broadsword can go wherever the body goes. Each posture is full of force, steadiness, and vigor.

Taiyi Xuanmen sword: This is the most valuable treasure among weapon manipulation arts. When performed perfectly, the sword is to follow the movement of body, and is manipulated by the will so that it can achieve such a state that the body and the sword can cooperate as one unit.

Wudang Sanfeng Taiji Jian (sword): This has 65 postures in all. It is said that this art was created by Master Zhang Sanfeng who incorporated many other sects sword play. Tai Chi Sword not only has Wushus characteristics of overcoming the hard with the soft, restraining motion with stillness, the practitioner relaxing and using the opponents force, manipulating the whole with little strength, but also the Taoist health-preservation methods. It has the function of body strengthening as well as self-defense.

Xuangong broadsword: It has 63 postures in all. This Kung Fu form belongs to the Wudang Xuangong School. The postures include cutting, sweeping, hooking, tangling, and upper cutting. When performed correctly, it feels as though a dragon were dashing out of water. The combination of highly flexible wrist work and strong internals results in coherent and smooth movements.

Xuan Men sword play: This weapon has 74 postures in all. While Shaolin enjoys fame for its long history of cudgel manipulation, Wudang gained its fame for its internal Kung Fu and sword forms. The sword plays a very special role in Chinese martial arts, and is considered the King of Weapons.

Xing Yi

Xing Yi Quan (form and intention fist) with 22 postures in all. It is also called form-and-will chain boxing, and is composed of cuts, straight blows, swings, oblique-thrusts, corkscrew blows, and so on. The movements are simple, succinct, and effective in combat.

Baji Quan

Eight-extremes boxing (Baji quan) has 47 postures in all. There is a very popular saying apply gentle Tai Chi to manage the country; use fierce Baji to overtake the domain. Baji Chuan is characterized by its vigor and explosive manner of applying power. The movements are rather swift, vigorous, violent and steady. It can be used for long-distance attack as well as short-distance defense.

Bagua Zhang

Eight diagrams palms (Bagua Zhang) - has 8 sub-categories each of which contains 8 movements. Bagua Zhang is a form of internal Kung Fu, making use of the laws of Five Elements growing and transformation as well as applying the increase and decrease pattern of Yin and Yang.

Based on the movements of walking in a circle, this art proceeds like doing grinding, Bagua Zhang transforms its positions and movements as in a mystery. Old Bagua palm, round body Bagua palm, Bagua chain palms are the most famous categories of Bagua. Old Bagua palm is quite demanding in the degree of body flexibility required.

When practicing, the body should move naturally as though the practitioners were wading through mud and full concentration is required. It is beneficial for strengthening the body and useful for defense as well as health preservation.

Long Hua Quan

Longhua Boxing (Longhua quan) has 28 postures. Wudang Mountain can be divided into Southern Wudang and Northern Wudang. We often say that the south is famous for fist boxing while the north is famous for leg applications. Longhua boxing is of Northern Wudang Kung Fu. It is mainly characterized by leg movements assisted with essential fist work.

Fu Hu Quan

Fu Hu Quan (Taming the Tiger Fist) has 65 postures in all. It is also called Xianglong FuHu Chuan (tiger-taming and dragon- subduing boxing). It is the most common form of boxing for Taoist to train their Kung Fu. It is characterized by much complicated fist work assisted with leg work.

Xuanzhen Quan

Xuanzhen Boxing (Xuanzhen Quan) has 41 postures in all. It is an elementary practice characterized by simplicity and practicality, containing most Wudang basic fist work, leg work as well step work.

Xuan Wu Quan

Xuanwu Boxing (Xuanwu Quan) has 53 postures. Xuanwu Quan is also called Two Symbols Boxing, which comes from the saying: the coordination of Yin and Yang gives birth to Taiji, and the separation of the two leads to Two Symbols. In this boxing style, the advantages of yin and yang can both be felt.

Some of the movements are rather swift, some are relatively slow; some are hard while some are quite soft. This is why it is called Two Symbols. This style of Kung Fu can be used to train hands, eyes, body, and Kung Fu basics while enhancing explosive strength (outburst power, and rebounding ability).

Jiben Quan - Basic Exercise

Basic Exercise (Jiben Quan) - 28 postures in all. Fundamental preparatory movements for beginners to practice basic fist work, leg work as well as stance work.

Xuan Gong Quan

Xuan Gong Quan (Dark Gate Fist) - 3routines including all the Wudang basic fist work, leg work as well as stance work. This primary level is characterized by simplicity and practicality.

Taiji

Taiji history

Zhang Sanfeng came to Wu Dang created Taiji 13 posture, became the assembler of Taiji and created Wu Dang Taiji. Influenced by Taoist religion and philosophy, ancient Chinese people invented many methods for cultivating essential nature and eternal life for longevity and immortality: Dao Yin; Tu Na; sitting meditation; observing the inner body and the mind; five animal play; and, many ceremonial forms of Taoist rituals. These all contributed to the origins of Taiji.

About 700 years ago, Zhang Sanfeng came to Wu Dang to cultivate his internal energy to achieve immortality. When he observed a snake fighting with a sparrow, he had a breakthrough and created Taiji 13 postures. This emerged from the ancient art of internal cultivation, combined with all the characteristics of martial arts styles and his own internal alchemy method. Wu Dang internal martial arts were created at the same period of time.

Taiji is not just the simple Taiji forms that we see in current times. It is a combination of Wu Ji, Taiji and Liang Yi, three different levels of form. Movement became a cultivation method with many facets: stillness to motion; exterior to interior; basic to advance; motion united with stillness; and fast movements combined with slow movements. Zhang Sanfeng became known as the developer or assembler of Taiji. He refined these ancient arts and created the Wu Dang Taiji system.

From him, two branches extended one to the North and one to the South. In the North, his successor was Wang Zhong Yue, and subsequently his successor Jiang Fa, created Zhao Bao Taiji. This became a community style, which differed from the style practiced in the monastery. Five styles evolved from Jiang Fa: Chen Wang Ting's Chen style Taiji; Yang Lu Chang's Yang style Taiji; Wu Yu Xiang's Wu style Taiji; Wu Jian Chuan's Wu style Taiji; and, Sun Lu Tang's Sun Style Taiji.

These five styles became the most popular styles in the world today. From the Southern lineage, the successor Zhang Song Xi, was in turn succeeded by several families who remain more mystical and less known to the world. Wu Dang mountain Taiji, and Zhao Bao Taiji remain more traditionally mystical and secret. From 1959 to today, the Chinese government has created many simplified styles of Taiji from the different family styles. These simplified styles and competition routines are designed for people to practice and to promote Taiji for the general public.

Taiji concepts

Taiji is an ancient Chinese system of exercise for people of all ages that can prevent and cure disease. It promotes health and is also an effective form of self-defense. The circular movements of Taiji are non-strenuous, soft and flowing. It is often described as "moving meditation" because it relieves stress and improves concentration. The slow turning motions loosen the joints and spine and relax points of tension in the body. Taiji trains the mind to direct the flow of internal energy or Qi.

The movements are performed with silk-like energy that is continuous, flexible, soft and effortless. Slow, deep and gentle breathing regulates the forms tempo. Taiji can be an effective therapy to strengthen the digestive, circulatory, and skeletal systems. Taiji is thought to be descended from natural movements of animals observed by Taoist monks. Taiji was developed by incorporating the vast knowledge of Taoist meditative practices into moving postures, creating what is known as a soft or internal form of exercise.

Conforming to Taoist philosophy, the form originates from Wu Ji, a state of stillness. Motion arises forming yin and yang - two complimentary opposites that combine to form the whole. Each movement within the form contains yin and yang: inhalation and exhalation, soft and hard, empty and solid, right and left. In Taiji, the body moves as a complete unit. The spine must be straight and the head is held as if suspended by a string from above.

The shoulders and elbows drop naturally. The chest is slightly concave while the back is slightly convex. The waist is the axis for all movements and must be loose. The mind must be totally concentrated and absorbed in the form. The subconscious mind directs the form while the conscious mind becomes pure and empty. Mind, body and spirit are united as one and a state of selflessness exists.

Push hands and sparring

Wu Ji and Taiji training will produce enough Yuan Qi to balance its power. The first two stages of training, Wu Ji and Taiji, allow the practitioner to produce enough Yuan Qi to balance their internal power and improve their Qi quality, smooth the meridian channels and produce explosive power: Hun Yuan Jing. Once the practitioner has mastered these two stages they are ready to advance to the third stage to train Jing for use in application. This stage of training is called Push Hands.

Through at least ten years of push hands training (single hand, double hand motion or static push hands), the practitioner trains to listen for Jing, yielding to Jing, and to emit Jing. You will be able to hear the opponent's intention at any moment, feeling your opponent's pathway of Qi, directing the opponent's Jing's landing point. This enables the practitioner to overcome motion from stillness. Softness overcomes hardness, applying four ounces to overcome a thousand pounds.

After practicing push hands to maturity, the practitioner can use Jing by subconscious free will. He can achieve a level of integration of hands, eyes, steady mind, body and footwork; and can apply it to Taiji freehand sparring. This is the advanced level of Taiji practice and requires over 20 years of practice. That is why we say that you don't know Taiji if you only have ten years experience. You know a little bit if you have 20 years experience. Only then can you say that you know Taiji. To learn Taiji push hands requires an experienced master instructor.

13 style Taiji

It contains 13 routines and 60 postures in all. It is believed to be the authentic Taiji Chuan handed down by Master Zhang Sanfeng. Because it contains 5 steps and 8 positions, it is also called Taiji Mu Boxing. Wudang Taiji Chuan applies the soft to overcome the hard, stillness to restrain movements.

It reacts later but takes the upper hand first, thus it is a good way for body strengthening and self-defense. By practicing it, people can transform strength (Jing) into internal energy (Qi), then into Shen, so that it makes up for weakness and cooperates with the Tao. It combines Wushu with health-preservation and can achieve the purpose of gaining longevity, becoming more intelligent and stronger.

The process of practicing can be classified into 3 stages: Jing cultivation; Qi cultivation; Shen cultivation. The main cultivation methods include inhaling and exhaling to regulate breath, assisting external force to make up for internal force; standing on stakes to strengthen balance. The main movements are straight blows, pressing, jostling, picking, arraying, elbowing and so on.

When practiced well, it flows very smoothly by following, connecting, pasting, and striking. To practice it well requires peace of mind. Besides, practitioners have to bow the chest but straighten the back, relax the shoulders and lower the elbows. What is more, these all have to be done naturally. Wudang Taiji boxing incorporates movements with stillness. The internal work and external work contain each other, making it is an easy method for health-preservation.

108 style Taiji

The Wudang Sanfeng Sect 108-form Taiji includes 8 parts and 108 movements. This form originated from Zhang Sanfeng's first disciples, and its based on the original shorter 13-form Taiji only with some variations. This form is known exclusively in the Wudang Mountains. It is a tradition that all Wudang monks are to learn this form. This is different from the 13 form, which is usually only passed down to the senior Monk in every generation from each of the eight major temples on the mountain.

The most important thing for the practitioner of this form to remember is to be as relaxed as possible and keep a slow pace, as it is a very long form and should take approximately thirty minutes to perform. Every movement can be used either as an attack or defense, and the basic energy center for all of these movements is the abdominal region, known as the Dan Tian in Chinese.

28 style Wudang Taiji

The Wudang Sanfeng 28-form Taiji is based on the 108-form Taiji. Though compared with other forms, Wudang Taiji seems to be a very ancient form; it's still an abbreviated version of the 108 form, making many of the movements and concepts easier for practitioners to remember.

Taiji Hunyuan Chuang (Taiji mixed force stakes)

Strength (Jing), internal energy (Qi) and Shen are the three treasures of human body. The main focus of this form is to conserve strength and convert it to internal energy first and then to Shen second. Practicing this exercise for a period of time can make one feel more energetic, more intelligent and do others far beyond. The gist of performing this exercise is to master the naturally alternating law of three treasures and finally gain longevity.

Chiran Yangshen Gong

Chiran Yangshen Gong (Natural nourishing life exercise) - the wise cultivate Yang in spring and summer, and Yin in autumn and winter, so that they follow the law of nature. Otherwise it will bring detriment to body and spirit. Therefore, Yin-yang and the four seasons represent the alternation pattern of myriad things in movement. This set of exercises nourishes the body.

Qi Gong

Qi Gong promote balanced and healthy existence

Qigong is a practice that incorporates breathing techniques and specific movements and postures to help adjust balance in a practitioners body and mind, heighten feeling, internal awareness, and bodily communication, and to promote an overall more balanced and healthy existence. As a result of aligning the consciousness and the body in more harmonious communication with each other we find the body healthier, with a stronger immunity to protect against invasive forces like sickness and disease.

As well as specific practices for attaining longevity and making the body and mind overall stronger, more robust, and proficient. Having more internal awareness and stronger bodily communication can also help practitioners to find their individual strengths and weaknesses, develop life goals, and learn to train their bodies and minds together. Wudang qi gong has two systems of qi gong practice: hard qi gong and internal, or soft, qi gong.

The three levels of Qi Gong training practice

Hard Qi Gong can also be called Tong Zi Gong (), or bucket Qi Gong. There are three levels of training in the practice of hard qi gong; beginning with basic level training and moving to the more advanced stages. The practices of Qi Gong involve specific breathing technique, as well as the practice of swallowing air in order to cleanse the internal organs and digestive tract, gathering, distributing, and circulating qi throughout the body, storing Qi, compacting Qi, using Qi for explosive power and protection, and strengthening the internal organs.

Hard Qi Gong practice trains the tendons, bones and skin, while internal qi gong practice focuses on the cultivation of "essence", Qi, and "spirit". Combining these practices together with the conditioning of the skin, muscles, and tendons through repeated hitting with various technique and instruments and various movements can increase the strength of the external body and internal organs.

The practice of Qi Gong is meant to awaken and strengthen the vast potential each individual has; both internally and externally. It can also teach a practitioner how to be in better communication with their body and thus have better internal coordination as it has been conditioned to higher levels of health and power. Once a practitioner of hard qi gong has trained the higher levels of training they can then break objects over their body and be struck with kicks, punches, etc. without sustaining injury.

Internal Qi Gong

Internal Qi gong practice can also be called "soft qi gong. Buddhist practice focuses on the cultivation of the mind or spirit with little attention paid to the body. Daoist qi gongs main focus is on the body and health preservation. Both are considered internal/soft qi gong. In internal Qi Gong the focus is placed on deep breathing without allowing the thoughts to wander too far. The practice of soft Qi Gong does not require the use of large amounts of physical energy.

This type of training can help to open the lungs and strengthen respiration, strengthen the organs, and also open the energy channels and meridians of the body. We practice both hard Qi Gong and soft Qi Gong to connect the body as a composite whole. The benefits of internal Qi Gong practice are vast. Internal Qi Gong practice is beneficial for all people and can help with physical and emotional ailments that a practitioner may be suffering from.

The main practice of internal Qi Gong is the practice of taking in healthy fresh qi and expelling the waste, toxins, and unhealthy qi that have accumulated in our bodies over time. Alongside this practice is the practice of collecting Qi and storing it in the dan tian to strengthen the body and revitalize the energy, and the spirit. After extensive practice and enough qi has been cultivated in the dan tian of a practitioner they can then learn to use it to strengthen the five organs and also to use the mind an intention to circulate Qi to open the bodys energy channels and meridians.

The benefits of Qi Gong

The result being that a practitioners body and mind then gradually returns to the calm, soft, supple state of a child. The practice of Qi Gong is a practice that people of all body types, ages, and goals can partake in. The practice of Qi Gong can help strengthen a practitioner's external and internal bodies, vital energies, spirit. By awakening the potential of our bodies, strengthening their immunity and inter-communication, and understanding them more we can eventually have success in having a clean and calm body and mind.

The eight brocades

The eight brocades are a set of Qi Gong exercises that originated in China and are practiced throughout the world. They are also known as the Eight Silken Movements, The Eight Treasures Dao-yin, The Eight Pieces of Silken Brocades, Baduanjin, or Pa Tuan Chin. Whatever the name, they are a set of qigong movements that date back thousands of years.

Just as there are many names of the Eight Brocades, there are various names for each of the movements and a variety of styles. You will also notice seated and standing versions of the movements. Remember, these movements have been passed down through the years, with each master having a slightly different style.

The Eight Brocades are most often considered a medical qigong exercise set. You will see similarities between the Eight Brocades and the first eight movements of the Eighteen Hands of the Lohan, which are a set of exercises taught to Buddhist monks at the Shaolin Temple in China. Because of this similarity, you will also read that the Eight Brocades are a martial arts qigong.

It is suggested that you do the entire set at least once per day. Go at a pace and do the number of repetitions which matches you fitness and health level. Gradually, work up to eight repetitions of each movement. By completing these qigong movements, you should notice improved health, increased energy, reduced stress, a revitalized mind and body, improved balance, and an overall sense of wellbeing.

Tai Yi Wuxing (five element) Chuan

25 routines with about 81 movements in all. As an important school of Wudang internal Kung Fu, Taiyi is somewhat similar to Wudang Tai Chi. It was established by Master Shouxing, who was of the Longmen Sect of Wudang Taoism in the Ming Dynasty. It combines the 13 styles of Tai Chi Chuan, the Five-Animal Exercises of Hua Tuo (a famous doctor of the Han Dynasty) and Dao Yin (Taoist Yoga) in terms of breathing, regulating, striking and defense.

Theoretically, it lays more emphasis on the application of Yin-Yang and Five Elements, so the layout resembles the frame proclaimed by Yin-Yang and the Five Elements theory. When practicing, the mind-will is more important than strength, and, transforming to adapt to circumstances is more effective than direct resistance.

It requires that the heart-mind and breathing accompany each other, and that the waist move in harmonious correspondence with the motion of the hipbones. The body has to act slowly, smoothly and naturally. When practiced well, it looks like a worming snake. Yet in fact, it achieves the effect of a forceful as a thick callus, in well attainment of overcoming vigor while flexibility is well preserved.

Crane-Style Stakes (walking crane)

Crane-style stakes also called walking crane Qi Gong, is a nourishing life and health-preservation exercise. It imitates the movements and stances of white cranes in the wilderness.

Masters

Master Zhong Yun Long

Master Zhong Yunlong is a 14th generation legitimate inheritor of Wudang Sanfeng Pai (pai equates to sect), an orthodox Wudang Internal Kung Fu successor of two great Wudang Taoist masters and senior priests: Guo Gaoyi and Zhu Chengde. When Wudang Taoism first opened to the outside world, Master Zhong Yunlong was sent by the Wudang Taoist Association, to unearth Wudang martial arts which were then only being practiced outside the temple.

The Wudang Taoist Association established the first Wudang Taoist Martial Arts Team and Master Zhong was the foremost member of the team. In 1989, Master Zhong replaced the senior Taoist priest Guo Gaoyi as the "Wudang Taoist Association Martial Arts Chief Coach". At the same time, he was appointed as the principal and chief coach of the Wudang Taoist Kung Fu School by the Wudang Taoist Association. This was the first time Wudang Kung Fu was formally shown in public.

Master Jiang Fei

Jiang Shiqing, born in Suizhou City, Hubei Province, is a 15th generation legitimate inheritor of the Tai Chi Master Zhang Sanfeng. As the disciple of Master Zhong Yunlong, the 14th generation legitimate inheritor, Jiang has practiced martial arts consecutively for decades since childhood and has come to develop a profound understanding of the soul of Taoism.

Being a favored student of Master Zhong, Jiang has grasped the essence of several different sects of Wudang Martial Arts, such as Tai Chi, Xing Yi, Ba Gua, Ba Xian, Xuan Wu, Xuan Gong and Tai Yi. Through perseverance and diligence, Jiang has continued to develop his skill and understanding of his practice and the nature of Tao.

Master Xiao Long You

Xiao Longyou, Daoist name Shiyang, is a 15th generation legitimate inheritor of the Wudang Sanfeng Pai (Sect). Xiao was fascinated with martial arts from childhood. He began the practice of external martial arts at seven and went to the Wudang Mountains at eleven to become a student of Master Zhong in the Wudang Taoist Academy when he learned that Wudang is the cradle of Internal Boxing. He was affected and valued by his coaches and seniors for he respected and was kind to others.

Master Zheng An'Gang

Zheng An'gang, born in Yangxin City, Hubei Province, is a 15th generation legitimate inheritor of the Tai Chi Master Zhang Sanfeng. Zheng An'gang was born in a family that is in the martial arts aristocracy, and has practiced martial arts continuously with his father since he was a child. He came to Wudang Mountain when he was 15 years old and became one of Master Zhong Yunlong's disciples.

Wudang Sanfeng Academy

The academy

Our academy specializes in teaching Taoist culture and training future coaches of Wudang Kungfu and nourishing life practices. It is not a place for sight-seeing and entertainment, but for cultivating stillness of mind and developing a deeper understanding of Taoism. As such, the environment is simple and supportive of a reclusive lifestyle, secluded from the hustle and bustle of modern life. Our academy is not a hotel, but rather a place for study and personal enrichment.

Introduction and philosophy

Wudang Sanfeng Academy, nestled at the foot of the Wudang Mountains, was established in 2010 by Master Zhong, a 14th generation lineage holder of the Wudang Sanfeng Sect of Taoism. The Academy is an educational unit whose purpose is to develop and expand Taoist culture and Taoist thought; popularize Wudang martial arts; teach Taoist methods for preserving ones health, knowledge of the science of the human body, life science, and traditional Chinese medical science and disseminate Taoist philosophy for living life.

The Academy is a base from which the Wudang San Feng Pai Friendship Association strives to unite people from across the world to promote peace and health through the cultivation of Wudang internal arts. We welcome sincere students from all continents and countries and respect the individual's religious, philosophical and cultural heritage. Our multi-lingual staff and teachers provide the very best Wudang Internal Kung Fu training to the most diverse base of students.

Open to all interested students

We welcome the dedicated student to our family and design their individualized training program based on their personal goals and objectives. We take into consideration the student's current physical, emotional and spiritual development and needs, and their proposed length of stay to design an achievable but challenging course of study.

The Academy uses traditional teaching methods adapted to this modern world. We offer a buffet of Wudang Taoist culture; the depth and breadth of which is tailored to the individual student. For the student who wants to spend two years developing their Kung Fu skills we offer a systemized approach to achieving teaching certification.

For the student who wishes to spend two weeks focusing on nourishing life practices or two months on internal alchemy, personal development and cultivation we similarly have adaptable systems of instruction. We recognize that students come to us from all walks and at all stages in life and strive to create an environment to support them in their journey of exploration, learning and personal development.

It is our wish to promote development and progress in every country and throughout society through the dissemination of Wudang Internal Martial Arts and nourishing life practices. Our central principle is to guide peoples hearts to peace, to help them enjoy a healthy life, to promote societal harmony, and, even more, to make a contribution to humanitys spiritual development.

The academy

The academy is nestled into an orange grove and is housed primarily in three buildings. Within the main gated area is the office building to the left which also houses the competition team member's sleeping quarters. To the right is the residential building which has the sleeping accommodations for students, meeting and class rooms, and indoor practice room.

Directly across from the main gated campus is the Tai He building which has additional residentially space for students and instructors. The large courtyard in the main campus is the primary training location. There is a small training area in front of the Tai He building as well. Also on the main campus, behind the two main buildings is a small building which houses the kitchen.

Facilities

Internet: The office building has a room which is wired for internet. If you choose to bring your computer, you can connect to the internet in this room. We have a 100m high speed cable network. You can bring your own laptop and use the internet in your free time for work or study, and if you do not have your own computer, you can also email, fax, and make copies in our office.

Laundry: The Academy has several washing machines that are available for student use. Laundry is generally air dried. There is plenty of space to hang laundry.

Meeting and classroom space: The academy has classroom and meeting space in which to conduct English language classes for the competition team, theory and philosophy lectures and more.

Training equipment and facilities: The academy has a wide array of weapons and training equipment for the students to use. Many students opt to purchase their own swords, if they are focusing on any of the Wudang sword forms. While most training is conducted out of doors, the Academy has indoor training space that is also used for sparring and practice during inclement weather and in the outdoor area, in addition to the main courtyard practice space we have a stretching bar and stairs.

Rules and regulations

Follow the coachs instruction while training: Be on time - don't arrive late for training; don't leave the training ground freely; don't speak without the coachs permission; don't fight with others; don't say bad words to others; and dont smoke. When a students behavior in a class is so seriously disruptive as to compel immediate action, the coach has the authority to remove a student from the class.

Temporary schedule of training is from Friday to Wednesday. Please clean your dormitory and bathroom on Wednesday afternoon, we arrange a free car into town for shopping together after lunch. For recreation on Thursday, you can email or watch TV in the academy, or go out, but you should register in Lyns notebook where are you going, when you leave academy and when you come back.

Students are not allowed to leave academy before 6:30 a.m. or after 10:30 p.m. If you really have an urgent need, please contact dormitory advisors-Lyn and get permission.

Please be careful not waste the food, or overuse shared utilities. When leaving any public area doors should be secured and lights / taps turned off.

The school cannot accept responsibility for injuries accrued through practice at the school. All medical costs should be covered by the student themselves, including the cost of preparing medicine within the school. If preparing medicine yourself please seek permission from your teacher.

If during your stay at the academy any assistance is required from our staff all expenses they incur should be provided for. This includes exchanging currency, purchasing tickets or other items and accompanying students on excursions from the school.

Electrical safety: Students must not interfere with / attempt to repair electrical fittings or use electrical appliances within their personal rooms without permission from the staff on duty.

Student residents shall abide by any concerns or warnings about training rules, dormitory rules and any other rules imposed by our Academy. The Academy has the authority to charge for any damages caused by the student. If any of the regulations are broken it is the responsibility of the principal of the Academy to discipline those involved. If students repeatedly break rules and regulations or the offense is serious they will be expelled from the Academy. If the law is broken we will notify the local public security office and legal action will be taken. The Academy will not refund the tuition for a student who is expelled.

Language lessons

We offer a Chinese language class three days a week. We can also organize other classes, for example calligraphy classes or other aspects of traditional Chinese culture. You may also visit many interesting local places with your classmates in your free time.

Culture preparation

Taoism

Taoist Philosophy has guided Chinese society for over 3000 years. People incorporate it into their ordinary lives and find joy and happiness in the infinite well of the present moment. They learn to let life take its own course: to follow nature; to do nothing and to leave nothing undone; to merely look at their own emotions as if they were mere decorations and not to allow themselves to be consumed by them; to accept who they are and to accept whatever is coming.

They learn not to persecute themselves and not to become victims of their own situations. They learn to entertain life with joy and to have compassion, love and mercy toward the world: the illusion of the physical world. They find unity in the contradictory nature of reality and see the two sides of the same coin simultaneously. They learn to keep this contradictory view of reality in the center of the cosmos and thereby gain control of their own lives forever. This is only a small window into the wondrous wealth of mystical Taoist philosophy.

Sanfeng Academy is situated at the foot of the Wudang Mountains, surrounded on three sides by mountains. It is well situated with good natural energy. The environment is quiet and beautiful, with a temperate climate. On one hand, it is well-located and easy to access; on the other hand, it's separated from town, surrounded by tangerine groves and has clean air and abundant quiet.

All in all, it's a blessed place for martial arts and nourishing life practitioners and ascetics to develop and practice their skills. The location is both convenient for daily life and favorable for practice. Wudang Mountain, located in Shiyan City prefecture, in western Hubei Province, is about 2 hours by car from the nearest airport, but has its own railway station.

Wudang Mountain

Over five thousand years ago, in ancient China, there was a Taoist immortal who was prince of Jingle state. When he was 15 he rejected his crown and journeyed to the Wudang Mountains, to what is now called Prince Slope, to cultivate himself under the guidance of the sage Zi Qi. The prince spent 42 years cultivating in the Wudang Mountains. After overcoming many difficulties, unexpected hardships and through the revelations of a goddess, he floated up to heaven to enjoy eternal life. He was bestowed with the title of Tai Yee immortal and was later called Zhen Wu Greatness.

Thereafter the Taoist immortal Zhen Wu shaped Wudang Mountains' culture as much as geology shaped their topography. Over two thousand years ago, the great philosopher and preceptor of Chinese culture - Laozi and his disciple - Yixi Zhenren cultivated on Wudang Mountain, as a result Wudang Mountain is one of the earliest cradles of Taoism. Over six hundred years ago, a legendary hero, Zhang Sanfeng created Wudang Nei Jia Quan (Internal Martial Arts) which placed Taiji Quan as the central component of internal martial arts making Wudang Mountain the birthplace of Nei jia Quan.

Wudang Shan is known as the No. 1 Celestial Mountain in China and as the birthplace of Nei Jia Quan. It covers an area of 312 square miles with an organized complex of ancient Taoist buildings including 8 palaces, 2 Taoist temples, 36 nunneries, 72 temples, 39 bridges and 12 pavilions, which represent the highest standards of Chinese art and architecture covering a period of nearly 1,000 years. It has such natural wonders as 72 peaks, 24 ravines, 11 caves, 9 springs, 3 pools, 9 wells, 10 peaks and 9 terraces.

The highest peak and temple in the range is Jin Ding, which rises to an elevation of 1,612 meters. In the late 1970s, China began its reform and open-door policy, and the ancient Chinese Taoist center became a Common Cultural Heritage of Mankind. The Wudang Ancient Building Complex in the Wudang Mountains, having been famous worldwide for its beauty, scale and grandeur, was recognized on December 17, 1994 by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and inscribed in the World Heritage List.

Many of the ancient buildings at Wudang were designed and planned according to the legend of Zhen Wu's cultivation, demonstrate traditional building skills, and reveal the emperors' rightful power and the great solemnity of Heaven. They demonstrate the Taoist reverence for nature; contribute great and beautiful royal palaces, mysterious and wonderful Taoism, quiet and classic gardens and other beautiful features. The ancient buildings reflect ancient designs, plans and architecture and are a wonder in the scope of the history of world architecture. The highly harmonious integration of buildings and natural sites surprises people from all over the world.

Meals at the Academy are prepared in a modern Chinese kitchen. Meals are served community style. Every meal includes a soup, two vegetable dishes and one meat dish. The flavours and style vary with every meal. We have a special chef who can customize the meals for students with special food requirements. We think our food is the best among Wudang Kung Fu schools. Students are responsible for washing their bowls and chopsticks.

Places of interest

Dragon Head Incense - The most dangerous scenery: There is a stone carving, protruding from the South Cliff, which people take delight in talking about for many years. This stone carving is called the Dragon-head Stone or the Dragon-head Incense Burner. It is 3 meters long, 0.55 meters wide. Actually, it is two entwined dragons carved together by ancient craftsmen using a variety of techniques, such as circular carving, through carving, and shadow carving. It is said that the two dragons are the saddle horse of Zhen Wu Emperor, who rode them to patrol everywhere. Because of its mysterious character and special status, disciples burned a stick of incense on the head of the dragon to show their devotion once they came to Mount Wudang, in spite of the danger.

Five Dragon Palace: The Five Dragon Palace was the first Taoist temple built on Mount Wudang. Located at the Wulong Ling Ying foothills, west of Tianzhu Mountain, it is of great importance in the development of Wudang Taoism, and was historically called the Palace of Efficacy. The Five Dragon Palace was constructed in Tang Dynasty under the emperors edict. It has over 1,300 years of history, having been built several hundred years earlier than any other building complex in Wudang.

Golden Peak-the highest peak of Wudang Mountains: Golden Peak, or Palace of Harmony, lies at the top of Skyscraper Hill, the highest peak of Wudang Mountains. Skyscraper Hill, at a height of 1613 meters, penetrates the clouds. It was regarded as a pole to support the sky and is the highest point for surveying the scenic Wudang Mountain. Until you have climbed to the peak of Skyscraper Hill and entered the Palace of Harmony, you have not come to Wudang Mountain in the truest sense; whether you are Taoist, pilgrim, visitor, or man of letters.

The South Cliff: The South Cliff, also known as Purple Cloud Cliff, was given its name because it faces south. Surrounded by magnificent mountains and dense forests, The South Cliff is the most beautiful example of the perfect integration of nature and buildings of all the thirty-six cliff structures in the Wudang Mountains. The ancient architecture of South Cliff broke the traditional rules that buildings should be symmetrical in composition and layout. Its architecture is highly harmonious with the surrounding environment. Ancient craftsmen made the building group very imposing and grand, while the individual building are delicate.

Zi Xiao Palace: ( / , Wdngshn Zxio gng), also known as the Purple Heaven Palace, is a Daoist temple in the Wudang Mountains of Hubei Province in China. First built in the eleventh year (1413) of the Yongle reign of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), the Zixiao Palace is one of the ancient palace complexes well preserved in Wudang Mountain. Inside the Dongtian Gate of the Zixiao Palace, are the Lonhu Hall, the Xunbei Pavilion, the Shifang Hall, the Zixiao Hall and the Fumu Hall, one behind the other. Layer upon layer, these halls were built following the terrain of the mountain.

Yu Xu (Jade) Palace: During the Ming Dynasty, the Chinese government began the construction of the Imperial Palace in the north (now the Forbidden City), and construction of large-scale royal temples at Mount Wudang. The Jade Palace is the largest temple among the whole building group. Wang Shizhen, a famous writer of the Ming Dynasty, highly praised the Jade Palace saying it was just like the Epang Palace of the Qin Dynasty, which consumed all the wealth of the government at that time. The Jade Palace was a city within a city, divided into three cities: outer, inner and purple gold city, each surrounded by walls, formed a stupendous architectural group in sharp contrast of grades. According to legend, Xuan Wu was given the title of Jade Emperor after accomplishing cultivation and becoming an immortal.

Yu Zhen Palace: Yu Zhen Palace is surrounded with mountains and rivers at the foot of Phoenix Mountain. At its peak, the palace comprised more than 400 rooms, covering an area of over fifty-six thousand square meters. It's main temple hall is the best preserved building in the Ming Dynasty style. The emperor built the palace especially for the Wudang Taoist priest, Zhang Sanfeng. History records that Zhang Sanfeng was tall and brawny, with big ears and round eyes, wearing a leaf raincoat winter or summer, whether in the country or the city, which made people, think he was an immortal.

To travel to Wudang from outside of China, it is best to fly into either Shanghai or Beijing. From these cities, the traveler has the option of flying or traveling by train.

Arrival by airplane

Xiangfan has the airport closes to Wudang. If no flights are available to Xiangfan, you may want to consider flying into Shiyan. From either of these cities, you can then travel by bus or taxi to Wudang. Alternately Wuhan is approximately five hours by train from Wudang.

Arrival by train

Taking the train from Beijing or Shanghai is the most convenient method of travel to Wudang. The trip is around 20 hours, but the soft sleepers can be quite comfortable. The destination town by train is Wudangshan. Train travel from Wuhan in Hubei Province is around 5 hours.

Testimonials

  • Review by Kristina A. Naldjan from United States
    9 out of 10

    "My goal in attending the Academy was to strengthen my Tai Chi foundation and learn Wudang Tai Chi and a sword form. My experience is excellent, I feel more grounded and solid in my forms already.The academy has a family feel with students from the USA, China, and Taiwan. Language has not been a barrier in communicating, most speak some English and a translator is available on site for more intricate Q & A.The instructors are all highly experienced and champions in their fields of Wushu and Tai Chi. Master Zhong, who is highly regarded in the internal martial arts community, is in charge of the curriculum and overseas all teaching with direct hands on instruction.The facilities provide for private and semi-private accommodations with bath. Three delicious meals are served family style by a resident cook. It is a pleasure to experience the variety of tastes that the Chinese culture provides. Soup is provided with lunch and dinner with staple rice and three dishes."

    Wudang Sanfeng Academy website, edited