Five Animals Kung Fu
Shaolin Hung Kuen

Tom Bayley
Instructor
0208 977 2813

What is hung kuen?

Hung kuen is a traditional Chinese Kung Fu system. The full title of the art is Nam Siu Lam Hung Gar Kuen or Southern Shaolin Hung family fist. The roots of the art lie in the monastic traditions of Southern China .

The club belongs to the Ti Ku Sam lineage. Ti Ku Sam was renown not only for his fighting ability but also for his practice of the yogic aspects of Kung Fu. He is credited with creating the internal “Iron Thread” form of Hung Kuen. This understanding of dynamic yoga underpins everything we practice at the club.

The lineage contains several entire systems. We use Hung Kuen as the as the foundation for learning Kung Fu.

What are the five animals?

To understand how the human body moves the Shaolin looked to nature:

Panther
Fast, light, precision strikes are combined with agile footwork
Crane
Powerful movements of arms and upper body escape locks and uproot opponents
Dragon
A light wiry body focuses internal energy to grip and grapple
Snake
Soft and yielding, absorbs and deflects strikes, lighting fast counter-strikes
Tiger
Awesomely powerful strikes and immense strength

What is hung kuen for?

Everything that you learn in Hung Kuen has an application for self-defence. There is much more to Hung Kuen than just self-defence; there is yoga, aerobic fitness, health, traditional medicine, competition, art and more. But the thing that makes Hung kuen different from plain yoga or aerobics is that you learn to defend yourself.

What will I learn?

Pugilism
Avoiding and controling punches and kicks and striking with power.
Grappling
Avoiding joint and muscle locks and to using leverage to apply locks.
Throwing
How to stay balanced to uproot and throw an opponent.
Vital points
Understanding anatomy and medicine to attack vulnerable points.
Energy
Cultivating energy for health and vitality, and using it in defence and attack.
Weapons
Use a wide range of weapons such as: the staff, sword, dagger, spear and walking stick to strike, trap, throw, attack vital points and focus energy.

Is a traditional art relevant in a modern world?

Shaolin kung fu is based on an intimate understanding of the human body. It is as effective now as it was 500 years ago.

Is hung kuen suitable for women?

The foundations of Hung Kuen are balance, natural movement and good body mechanics. This makes it an ideal art for women.

Is a particular body shape better for hung kuen?

The whole point of martial arts is that they are for everybody. It doesn’t mater whether you are tall or short, big or small, male or female. This is the art for you.

What are the benefits of hung kuen?

Practicing Hung Kuen:

  • Improves coordination
  • Improves posture and balance
  • Improves flexibility and strength of joints and muscles
  • Reduces stress
  • Increases aerobic fitness
  • Increases health
  • Cultivates energy so that you look and feel younger

And on top of all this it’s fun!

Does the club belong to a recognised organisation?

The club is part of the Wei-t-o kung fu organisation. It is recognised by the British Counsel for Chinese martial arts (BCCMA).

Where do you train?

We are based in Teddington, west London. There are good road and rail connections to north, central and south London.

About the instructor

My name is Tom Bayley, I am the instructor at the west London club. I am forty years old and a qualified teacher working in adult education. I began studying Hung Kuen in 1994 and became an assistant instructor in 2002 and I remain a student of Sifu Geoff Hasbrouck. I opened the west London club in 2006.

To find out more

For more information about the West London club ring Sifu Tom Bayley on 0208 977 2813.

For more information about the Wei-t-o organisation, the Ti Ku Sam lineage, and the systems that we practice go to www.weito.org