Classes held on:
Tuesday: 7:30pm to 9:00pm
Arborfield Cross Village Hall
Arborfield, Berkshire


Friday: 7:30pm to 9:00pm
Arborfield Cross Village Hall
Arborfield, Berkshire

THE TECHNIQUE

SOUTHERN PRAYING MANTIS STYLE

THE STYLE | Back to top

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The Chow Gar style is very closely related to the traditional shaolin styles; although it has been developed with more practical applications in mind. Most of the techniques are very short-range and quick, as in a real-life situation there would be no time for length moves that require lots of space. Chow Gar also develops what is called 'Gen force' (also known as the 'One-Inch Punch' as made famous by Bruce Lee). Gen force is developed through tensing and releasing the muscles, getting them used to very explosive movements that require less distance and effort than would otherwise be required.



ORIGINS | Back to top

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Chow Gar was created by a monk called Chow Ah Naan over 200 years ago. The style was alleged to have been developed from studies of praying mantis attacks on much larger animals. It is said that the 'Gen force' was derived from the quick attacks the mantis used to stun their prey.



FORMS | Back to top

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When a new technique is learned it can be hard to work out how it will be used with the other techniques already learned. This is when forms are useful. A form is a pre-determined string of techniques linked together to create a motion similar to a set of dance steps. It is effectively a fight against an invisible opponent, which help students to flow from one move to another without losing momentum. In the Chow Gar style forms can also include some strength building, rooting and chi kung techniques, as well as helping to improve speed and accuracy.



CHONGS | Back to top

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Obviously fighting against invisible opponents is never enough to prepare for a real situation. Chongs are two-man drills that enable students to practice defending against a real attack, and how to counter-attack. Through chongs students can learn to feel when a move is being made long before it happens. They also help to build up resistance to attacks through conditioning.



CONDITIONING | Back to top

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When a strong attack is blocked it can be quite painful if that part of the body is not used to the force. By preparing, or conditioning, the body pain is reduced greatly to the point that it may hurt the attacker more than the defender; while also helping to strengthen the bones. Conditioning also helps to prepare the mind for combat through practicing full contact attack/defence.



WEAPONS | Back to top

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While being a major part of tradition in Kung Fu practice, weapons also help to build coordination, balance and awareness of surroundings. It also builds awareness of the fact that anything can be used as a weapon for self-defence if the situation requires it.