Chow Gar Southern Praying Mantis Kung Fu

First and foremost, Chow Gar Southern Praying Mantis kung fu is a highly efficient self-defence martial art. The training methods are entirely applicable in self-defence situations because the form and function of this style are the same. Strikes (including blocks) are executed in the most economical manner possible. Most individual techniques have more than one application and often these applications are used simultaneously. An example could be a blocking technique that both attacks the assailant and deflects his attack at the same time. Further, each technique is designed to cause maximum injury through knowledge of the body's vital points. The basic weapon (i.e. "fist" or "hand") used in the style is known as the phoenix-eye fist which features a single extended knuckle. The phoenix-eye fist is a multi-purpose weapon but it's first function is to strike the body's sensitive vital points using the protruding knuckle. By focussing the power of the strike into a small point, the energy in the strike can penetrate deep into the attacker's body, causing serious internal injury. Other economical features of this art include avoiding the use of high kicks, leaps and other aerobatics. Much time is saved because strikes emanate from the current position of the hand concerned (rather than first being "chambered" or "cocked"). Man-made weapons are used without modifying the empty-hand techniques. Chow Gar Southern Praying Mantis kung fu is considered a "high" system. It emphasizes the cultivation of Chi as a fundamental aspect of the art. Chi power is an integral component of the style, being both required for the development and execution of effective techniques. Simultaneously with improving martial technique, chi work brings with it the benefits of increased long-term health and well-being. These features contribute to an extended active life with a lesser degree of general deterioration (e.g. brittleness in bones or loss of sensory function). At advanced levels of practise, training incorporates meditation which plays an ever more important role in martial development and development of the practitioner as a whole person. Southern praying mantis kung fu is not suitable for inclusion in sport. The subtle vital point techniques which differentiate it from most arts, coupled with the 100% force of application make it too dangerous to allow in a competition. Making the Southern mantis practitioner wear padded gloves etc. simply detracts too much from the essence of the style. Perhaps for these reasons, the tradition of Southern praying mantis kung fu continued.

Thursday's 8-10pm
St Judes Methodist
Faringdon Road, St Judes, Plymouth
Sunday's 11am-12pm
Harbour House
Bridge St/Promenade, Kingsbridge