The Shaolin Disciplines
As the birthplace of all martial arts, Shaolin encompasses every style. Kung Fu is the most aerobic of the arts offered at the USA Shaolin Temple. There is no belt system but there is testing and students are awarded certificates. Students learn stretching, stances, kicks, jumps, movements, and empty hand and weapons forms. All new Kung Fu members begin in Level 1, regardless of skill or previous experience.
TAIJI QUAN (Tai Chi)
Taiji Quan was originally and still can be a fighting art. Today it is more commonly practiced to keep one’s good health and stimulate the movement of chi or life force. It is strengthening and meditative. The movements are slow, fluid and mostly soft. Shaolin Tai Chi is most akin to the Chen style.
QIGONG (Chi Kung)
Qigong strengthens the body and unblocks the flow of chi. Students begin with Yijinjing, a soft qigong form, very similar to yoga, that was one of the four original forms created by Bodhidharma to help rejuvenate the monks after hours of seated meditation. Its stances are similar to yoga. Although not as active as Kung Fu or Tai Chi, it strengthens the body internally and externally.