INSIDE KUNG-FU MAGAZINE
February 2007 Issue
Instructor of the Year - Sing Tao Newspaper Article

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Training for Life
Column by Grandmaster Doc-Fai Wong
INSIDE KUNG-FU MAGAZINE
February 2007 Issue


Changing The Kong Chow Lineage Name


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Choy Li Fut kung fu is one of the most popular and widespread southern kung fu systems in the world. This system was founded by Chan Heung in the King Mui Village of Xinhui district of Jiangmen city of China. Chan Heung first learned from his distant uncle Chan Yuen Woo the Fut or the Buddhist style of the Southern Shaolin system. The Buddhist style of fighting is well-known for itfs palm striking techniques. Later, his uncle sent him to learn from Li Yau San. Li Yau San taught him the Li style of Southern Shaolin kung fu which is famous for kicking and other footwork. After he completed his training under Li, he continuing his kung fu training from a monk named Choy Fook on Luo Fu Mountain. He learned the famous northern kung fu fighting arts and herbal medicines from Choy Fook for over 10 years. Finally, Choy Fook told him to go home and continue to promote Shaolin kung fu. In 1836, he combined his knowledge of Choyfs unique fist fighting arts, Lifs powerful footwork and his unclefs Fut open hand techniques and named his kung fu system Choy Li Fut. This unique southern kung fu system created and handed down through many generations is now over 170 years old. It has both northern and southern fighting techniques with internal and external kung fu training forms. After all these years of development by the past masters, many branches of Choy Li Fut kung fu have appeared.

In the Plum Blossom International Federation, there are three branches of the Choy Li Fut kung fu system represented. The first one is the Futsan lineage which I learned from my late teacher Lau Bun. The second branch is King Mui. From this lineage, I learned my Choy Li Fut from the late Hu Yuen Chou. The third lineage is the Kong Chow which I learned from Wong Gong, my last teacher from Jiangmen city of China.

The Futsan lineage came from the famous Hung Sing School in the Fut San (Foshan) city of China. This was where Lau Bun learned his kung fu. Therefore I called this branch of our Choy Li Fut by the city name of Futsan.
The King Mui lineage came from the founder's family. Because it was founded in the King Mui Village of Xinhui (San Woi) and Hu Yuen Chou learned from the founderfs grandson Chan Yiu Chi, I named it the King Mui lineage or branch. Some other Choy Li Fut schools call this lineage the Chan Family lineage or style. But because we are not part of the Chan family we cannot call it the Chan Family style.

The Kong Chow lineage of Choy Li Fut was created by my third Choy Li Fut teacher Wong Gong in the late 1970s. The term Kong Chow was the county or district name in the old days before the Republic of China came into being. Nowadays only the locals know what that means, outsiders don't know where to find a place called Kong Chow.
When cities in China were updated to their modern names, the old Kong Chow district became part of Jiangmen city. Just like in the Futsan lineage, the Hung Sing School in Futsan was famous. Also well-known was the Hung Sing School in Jiangmen (its old name was Gong Moon) founded by Chan Cheong Mo.

I want to let everyone know that the branch of Choy Li Fut which we call Kong Chow is now officially renamed the Jiangmen branch of Choy Li Fut. Here is why; First, Great-Grandmaster Wong Gong was officially given the title "Keeper" by the former Keeper of the Hung Sing School in Jiangmen, Chew Kam Wing, in February 2006. Second, Wong Gong's other teacher Chan Yen was from King Mui Village and had the Chan surname, but he was not a member of the founder's family. Because King Mui Village is now part of Jiangmen City, Chan Yen's teaching are also considered to be in the Jiangmen lineage. In other words, Great-Grandmaster Wong Gong's teachings that came down to us are from the Jiangmen area, therefore we will now officially call his lineage the Jiangmen branch of Hung Sing Choy Li Fut.

docfai@gmail.com.



Doc-Fai Wong writes a bi-monthly column for Inside Kung-Fu.

February 2007 Inside Kung-Fu