At ZYKFA we take the study of traditional Chinese martial arts seriously, where we focus exclusively on the Northern Shaolin Style (北少林拳- Běi Shàolínquán). Chinese martial arts offers a wide range of options within its study, it covers striking with a variety of different parts of the body, pushing and checking techniques, seizing and apprehension methods and numerous throwing and take-down maneuvers. It also teaches a variety of classical weapons, combat sets, fighting and internal training methods to keep its practitioners well rounded and strong. Our school explores every combat and self-defense aspect of the Northern Shaolin style. With this in mind, there is no need to borrow techniques and methods from other disciplines and styles to complement our students training. At ZYKFA you will not learn a mix of combat arts in the curriculum, it's the Chinese martial art of Bei Shaolinquan only and we take pride in that fact.
Northern Shaolin Style is a traditional system of Chinese martial arts. Northern Shaolin emphasizes large frame techniques in the forms, small frame techniques in application, quick and light footwork, clever kicking combinations and circular defensive movements, it also relies on agility, creativity and aggressiveness in its attacks. The system is also known for a large arsenal of weapons that are at the disposal of the student, which not only teaches them how to effectively use short, long, bladed, blunt, double and flexible weapons in combat but it also enhances the students understanding of their hand-to-hand combat skills.
Northern Shaolin is one style of the many styles of China, it shares technical similarities with some styles created in the Central Plains region (中原 - Zhōngyuán) of China, however it is distinct in its use of ten specific taolu and that its most famous exponent was the great Master Gù Rǔzhāng (顧汝章- 1894-1952) known for his feats of Iron Palm (鐵沙掌) and Iron Body (小金鐘罩).
The system teaches its techniques first through the practice of Tàolù (套路- patterns), or Quántào (拳套 - fist patterns) also known as "forms". Students practice the techniques in the taolu until the movements become instinctual. Two person partner drills and sets (對練 - Duìliàn) are then added to train certain applications of techniques learned from the sets in a safe and predictable environment. However, to the practitioner of Bei Shaolinquan, the ultimate learning tool for truly understanding these techniques becomes what is called Sànshǒu (散手 - free sparring), or full contact fighting, where a variety of punches, kicks, elbows, knees, locks, grappling and takedowns are all part of the arsenal used by the practitioner to apply all their understanding of the art in a combat environment.
The practice of the Bei Shaolinquan system, by the student, brings together three important aspects in Chinese martial arts:
健 - Jiàn - Health - It is a great way of exercising your whole body for fitness and health maintenance.
用 - Yòng - Use - It allows you to analyze your techniques and movements to later be used in combat.
看 - Kàn - Looks - It gives you a way to express yourself artistically through movement.