Frequently Asked Questions

What do we teach, and do we belong to any particular Chinese martial arts style?

We teach wushu, Taiji (Chen style) both for adults and children, and are due to start lessons in San Shou (fighting) in July.

How old can children start to do Wushu training?

This largely depends on individuals, although we have children as young as 5 with us. We advise that they have abilities to listen, concentrate and get on with others. We do have special children’s classes and we have recently started a family class where young children can learn with their parents or their older siblings which is proving popular and successful as they are more likely to feel safe and are able to follow instructions better.

Can Chinese martial arts (wushu) be applied for self-defence?

The objective of Chinese Martial Arts essentially is to strengthen people’s physical condition and skill in self defence. The individual movements were derived from the techniques and skills used for self-defence and fighting for survival. Various movements and techniques have since then been modified, evolved and divided in to different styles which can be categorised in to external or internal. Nowadays, the different styles and all kinds of forms we practice are actually all the individual actions that are linked together, in order to be more convenient and easier to practice.

There is a common misunderstanding however, that Wushu is only performed beautifully with strong emphasis on artistic performances and that it is not able to be applied in real fighting. (The answer is in the question below).

What is sport wushu?

Around the 1970’s Chinese Martial Arts started to pay more attention on performing various routines artistically. It drew people’s attention and quickly became popular. This new representation of Chinese Martial Arts not only gave an opportunity for the practitioner to express themselves more freely, but also introduced it as an art for others to see and admire the amazing human body language. A set of compulsory movements and techniques within the forms (called Taolu) has been introduced to act as guidance to set different standards or levels for athletes to work on. It includes various types of jumps, kick, twists etc and are required to be performed with perfection, beautifully and elegantly, and twist and jump to be as more or as high as possible; it is therefore not difficult to understand that current compulsory (sport and competition) Wushu has great demand on body work and techniques, which asks for immense skill acquired through dedication and hard work.

Regardless of how it has evolved, the fundamental origin of current wushu is the traditional Chinese Martial Arts. Whether it can be applied in terms of fighting, I believe it depends on the level of understanding of those movements and its application by each different person. No doubt, it is less actual fighting skills than the traditional training method, nevertheless, it does included self-defence techniques. It may appear that there is less actual fighting in current training method than in the traditional training method, there are essences of self-defence techniques embedded.

In order to enhance self-defence ability, we are starting Chinese Sanshou which focuses on fighting applications at the beginning of July.

What is the relationship between martial arts and Taiji?

The Chinese Martial Arts can be categorised in to two main methods of application, one is external style and the other is internal. Taiji is only one the internal styles of the Chinese Martial Arts, but it is very well known and recognised for its unique training system and the benefit through its practice.

What are the differences in training between China and foreign countries?

The main difference is that in China most martial arts schools are for people who wish to train to become professionals. The method of training is therefore more intense and they usually train all day every day. On the other hand, many martial arts schools outside China are more relaxed where many practice for improving fitness and wellbeing. Most train once a week and each class lasts between one to two hours. At Jin Long we maintain a good balance of friendly and relaxed yet dedicated and productive training. The class is run as how it would be in China (but may be less intense!) and each student is given the instructions, advice and encouragement to support their individual motive for training.

How to join?

You can just turn up to any of the classes that are listed on our timetable either to just watch or join the training session. As a member of BCCMA and to protect us as well as our students, we require every person who wishes to join to obtain a membership which includes insurance and other benefits of becoming a member with a recognised body. We give 3 weeks trial period during which classes are priced at member’s price. If after two weeks the applications are not returned, the classes are charged at non-member price.

Do we have grading system?

We have our own unique grading system based on that in China which has been adjusted to suit here in the UK. Our grading scheme is designed purely to encourage our students (especially children), forming references to their individual achievements whilst maintaining our unique learning process. We hold an annual grading test usually at the end of the year. It is not compulsory to take grade tests, but it offers our students a good chance to see how much they have learned and improved through year’s training.

What are we aiming at in terms of training?

Concentration, confidence, self-actualisation, competition, achievement, more meaningful life, experience culture.