Wushu, Accepted As Olympic Game Event

Wushu, Accepted As Olympic Game Event

Wushu is practised all over China and is an important component of the cultural heritage of the country. Most visitors to China are deeply impressed by the tremendous popularity of wushu in this country. If you take a walk in the morning, you will see people practicing wushu barehanded or with weapons in parks, at the shore, or on roadside open grounds. Marked by callisthenic beauty and rhythm, their movements follow set patterns that are designed more for health-building than for self defense.

Wushu, which is sometimes called kung fu abroad, has developed over a long historic period. It can be traced back to pre-historical times. In order to survive the extremely hostile environment, our ancestors have to learn some primary means of attack and defense to fight against wild animals and among themselves. Moreover, they generally knew how to fight with weapons made from stones and wood or bare-hand fighting. This is considered to be the origin of wushu.

Wushu represents the spirit of Chinese culture and art. According to the philosophy of traditional Chinese medicine, wushu exercises consist of both “external” and “internal” work. The former means movements of the body, the hands and the feet and expressions of the eyes, and the latter is related to “the spirit, willpower, vital energy and strength.” The two aspects are combined as movements are guided by consciousness so as to achieve “a unity of body and mind.”

There are hundreds of styles and routines in wushu, each with its own distinctive features. Generally speaking, Shaolin style and Wudang style are the two most famous styles. Both of them lay emphasis on the external practice for genuine energy, vital energy and spirit and internal practice for muscle, bone and skin. Long-Range Shadow Boxing is characterized by speed and vigor, while taijiquan is noted for its slow and gentle movements. The humorous zuiquan describes a drunkard who is drunk in appearance but not in mind and is sober enough to outwit his opponent.


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