Monthly Archives: June 2015


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chi kung, qigong

Chi kung works on energy resulting in good health, vitality and longevity, whereas gentle physical exercise only works on the physical body, like loosening joins and muscles

Question 1

I’m writing to ask about the combination of Chi Kung practice and recreation in China.

On your site I’ve seen information about certified instructors and heelers in different countries, but there’s nothing mentioned about China.

— Svetlana. Russia


I am sorry I would be unable to give a satisfactory answer on the combination of chi kung practice and recreation in China for the following reasons.

Our view of chi kung is quite different from that of most chi kung practitioners in China. We consider what they practice as gentle physical exercise, and not chi kung. Chi kung is an art of energy, but what most practitioners today in China do is to work on their physical body, like loosening joints and muscles, and not on their energy.

As an analogy, which may give a clearer picture, what most Taijiquan (Tai Chi Chuan) practitioners today practice is external Taijiquan movements and not Taijiquan. Taijiquan is an internal martial art, but there is nothing internal, and nothing martial in what most Taijiquan practitioners today practice.

In both chi kung and Taijiquan, the forms used by most other practitioners and by us in our school, Shaolin Wahnam, are the same. The difference lies in how we practice the same forms. Most chi kung practitioners in China practice the chi kung forms as gentle physical exercise; we practice the same forms as an art of energy. Most other Taijiquan practitioners all over the world practice the Taijiquan forms as external movements; we practice the same Taijiquan forms as an internal martial art.

This is our view. You should also get the views of those whom we consider practice chi kung as gentle physical exercise, or Taijiquan as external movements.

Nevertheless, there are masters in China who practice chi kung as an art of energy, and there are masters in the world, including in China, who practice Taijiquan as an internal martial art. But they are few and rare, and may not be interested in teaching their arts.

On the other hand, I am competent to give a satisfactory answer on the combination of chi kung practice and recreation in our school. While there are many other benefits, like good health, vitality, longevity and peak performance, we take our chi kung practice as recreation, and not as endurance as many other chi kung practitioners may regard their practice. If you learn from us, you will soon discover that the three golden rules of practice in our school are (1) not to worry, (2) not to intellectualize while practicing, and (3) enjoy your practice.

This difference between recreation and endurance is more noticeable in the various styles of kungfu practiced in our school. In most other schools, kungfu training is characterized by endurance, epitomized by the term “ku lian”, which means “bitter training”. In our school the key word even in kungfu training is “enjoy yourselves”. It is almost a joke.

Chi kung, but not gentle physical exercise, is excellent for therapy. Many of our students overcame their so-called incurable diseases, like cancer, heart problems, diabetes, chronic pain, depression and addiction, by practicing chi kung learnt from us. Those who are already healthy prevent these so-called incurable diseases from happening, and are daily full of joy and vitality.

Please take note that “therapy” here means healing yourself, not healing others. In other words, our chi kung practice enables our students to heal themselves if they are sick, and remain healthy if they have no illness. If they want to be a chi kung healer to heal others, they must first become a good chi kung student, then be selected to attend special courses on chi kung healing.

My website contains information about activities, including certified instructors and healers, in various countries but not in China, because it describes activities as they are, and we have not expanded to China. If people in China believe that they can benefit from our activities, we shall gladly expand there. It is worthy of note that the expansion of our activities worldwide is spontaneous, initiated by dedicated people in the countries themselves.

Question 2

I would like to combine recreation, therapy, relaxation with Chi Kung practice. Is it possible to do in one of your health cultivation centres. I have recently come across the book by Grandmaster Wong Kiew Kit, “The Art of Chi Kung”, and I’ve realized that it’s exactly what I need.


If you like to combine recreation, therapy, relaxation with chi kung practice, I would recommend that you attend my Intensive Chi Kung Course. You may also be amazed at the many other benefits that you may not even dream about. Please see my website for details, and apply to my secretary for registration.

Thank you for the kind words about my book. Many people have kindly told me that it is the best book they have read on chi kung.

kungfu fighting

Kungfu is for fighting — using kungfu techniques, not kick-boxing or techniques of other martial systems

Question 3

I want to learn kungfu.

— Ali, Pakistan


Many people want to learn kungfu, but end up learning kungfu forms or kick-boxing instead. Learning kungfu fomrs or kick-boxing is fine, but it is different from learning kungfu.

Before you learn kungfu, or any art, it is wise to know what that art is. This may sound trite or unnecessary, but it will not only save you a lot of time but also prevent you from much injury.

For convenience we may classify kungfu into three types: ordinary kungfu, good kungfu, and great kungfu.

Ordinary kungfu is for self-defence. There are also other arts of self-defence, like kick-boxing, karate and taekwondo. The main difference is their forms. Kick-boxing uses kick-boxing forms, karate uses karate forms, taekwondo uses taekwondo forms, and kungfu uses kungfu forms.

There are different styles of kungfu, like Shaolin, Taijiquan, Praying Mantis and Baguzzhang. Praying Mantis kungfu forms can be very different from Baguazhang kungfu forms.

About 90% of those who say they practice kungfu only perform kungfu forms. Strictly speaking they do not practice genuine kungfu because they cannot apply their kungfu forms for fighting. Many of them may not admit this fact. Some may not even realize it.

Of those who practice only kungfu forms and cannot use their kungfu forms for fighting, 70% of them perform their kungfu forms for demonstration. Past masters referred to such demonstrative kungfu forms as “flowery fists embroidery kicks”. 30% of them use kick-boxing or other martial techniques, but not kungfu, for fighting.

I would like to clarify that personally I have nothing against them. What and how they choose to practice is their right and business. Actually many of those who practice “flowery fists and embroidery kicks” are very nice people – the type of people I would like to have tea with, though I disagree with their concept and practice of kungfu.

So, kungfu is quite rare. Kungfu is for fighting. But the great majority of those who say they practice kungfu, cannot use their kungfu for fighting, though some of them are good fighters using kick-boxing or other martial techniques.

For every 100 persons who say they practice kungfu, only about 10 can use their kungfu for fighting. In our classification, we call this ordinary kungfu.

But kungfu is not just for fighting, though combat efficiency is its most basic requirement. Good kungfu contributes to health, vitality and longevity. While the percentage of those who practice genuine kungfu is low, only about 10%, amongst those who practice genuine kungfu, the percentage of good kungfu is high, about 70%. So about 7 out of the 10 practitioners of genuine kungfu have good health. They also have high moral values.

Amongst those who practice “flowery fists embroidery kicks”, the percentage of good health is also very high, about 90%, or about 63 of 70 practitioners. But they cannot be said to practice good kungfu, not even ordinary kungfu, because they cannot use their kungfu for combat.

Why is the percentage of good health amongst “flowery fists embroidery kicks” practitioners, 90%, higher than that of genuine kungfu practitioners, 70%? It is because genuine kungfu practitioners engage in combat where they may tense their muscles to generate mechanical strength. Those who practice kungfu forms but use kick-boxing or other martial techniques for combat do not have good health because they sustain a lot of injury which is routinely left unattended to.

Great kungfu, which is not only for combat and good health but also for spiritual cultivation, is very rare. Only 1% of those who say they practice kungfu may have a chance to practice great kungfu.

Please take note that spiritual cultivation is different from moral cultivation, though they are closely related. A morally cultivated person is kind and considerate, but he may or may not believe in his own spirit. He may think that he is only a physical body. Spiritual cultivation is the cultivation of the spirit. A spiritually cultivated person is relaxed, peaceful and happy, and at high levels may have glimpses of Cosmic Realty.

Please also take note that spiritual cultivation is non-religious. Any person of any religion or without any professed religion can cultivate spiritually. Spiritual cultivation will enable a religious person to be a better follower of his own religion because it makes his religions teaching come alive.

To sum up, kungfu is rare. Most people practice only kungfu forms, and use kick-boxing or other martial techniques when they have to fight. Genuine kungfu may be ordinary, good or great. Ordinary kungfu is for fighting. Good kungfu is for fighting and good health. Great kungfu is for fighting, good health and spiritual cultivation.

It is a golden opportunity to be able to practice great kungfu. But because kungfu today is so debased, the public generally does not have a good impression of kungfu practitioners. They think of them as rough and aggressive. In fact it is the resvers. A genuine kungfu practitioner is gentle and considerate to others, relaxed and happy to himself.

Question 4

I often feel more powerful after training a Small Universe session rather than an Iron Wire session.

— Steven, USA


If all other things were equal, Iron Wire will produce more internal force than Small Universe. On the other hand, Small Universe will give better health benefits than Iron Wire. This is relative. Iron Wire, when practiced correct, also gives very good benefits for health. Small Universe also produces internal force.

But many people practice Iron Wire wrongly. They perform it as isometric exercise which also produces much strength. But it produces big muscles which are detrimental to health.

For you other things are not equal. You have learned both Iron Wire and Small Universe, and can perform them well. More significantly, you gain the benefit of breadth and depth, which enhance both your Iron Wire and Small Universe as well as all other arts. Hence, different from the norm, your Small Universe generate more internal force for you than Iron Wire.

There may be various reasons which we don’t need to worry about, but will discuss here for intellectual pleasure. A likely reason is that having learnt Iron Wire, you know how to develop internal force using the force method. When you practice Small Universe, your flow method enhance the internal force earlier created by your force method, making you more powerful than had you employed only the force method.

Small Universe

A Small Universe Course in Penang

Question 5

Can Small Universe be used as the sole method for training internal force? If so, is the internal force generated from Small Universe classified as flowing force?


Yes, you can use only the Small Universe to generate internal force. But because you also know other methods, it is wise to use the other methods too, even once a while.

Yes, the internal force generated from Small Universe is classified as flowing force. Because of our benefit in breadth and depth, we can convert the flowing force into consolidated force, and vice versa, if we like.

You need not worry whether which method will give you the optimum benefit, because even if, without your knowing, you have chosen a relatively less effective method, you will still produce a lot of internal force and other benefits.

As an analogy, if a man uses method A he earns 4 million dollars a month, but he uses method B he earns only 3 million dollars a month, which is by proportion considerably less. But he needs not worry and makes himself stressful which method to use. Even if he earns only a million dollars a month using any method and performs below par, he still has more money than his needs.

But if he earns four thousand dollars a month using method A, and only three thousand dollars a month using method B, he needs to be sure he uses method A. Earning 25% less income in this case makes a difference.

Question 6

By practicing the Small Universe daily and training Iron Wire once in awhile, does my Iron Wire force dissipate from the circulation from Small Universe? I believe the answer is no from personal experience, but I would be very grateful if Sigung could confirm.


You are right. The answer is no.

For other people without our benefit of breadth and depth, not only the Iron Wire force will dissipate, it may interfere with his Small Universe training.

This is because of the magic of chi flow that we have. We can convert flowing force, or a portion of it, into consolidated force, and vice versa.

Shaolin Iron Wire

An Iron Wire Course in Lisbon

Question 7

I’ve been trying to slowly incorporate Iron Wire back into my training regimen by practicing every other day. However, I find that the force generated from Small Universe often spills over into my Iron Wire practice, making the Iron Wire sessions too powerful.


This is quite normal in our school because of our benefit of breadth and depth. Yours and many other people’s examples in our school answer a question some of our instructors initially asked, which was whether they should focus on what they already knew or learned new material.

Our advice to students, which is quite ridiculous to other people if not a joke, is to tell our students train less, not more. Don’t over-train. Use the time you save and the internal force and mental clarity you gain from your training to get a good girlfriend.

Question 8

Could Sigung kindly provide training advice as to how to proceed with Small Universe and Iron Wire?


If you earn a million dollars a month when your needs are ten thousands, you need not worry about the best working procedure. Just carry on working the way you have been doing, with the three golden rules of working, namely don’t worry, don’t intellectualize, enjoy the work. Even if you earn only one tenth of your potential, you still earn ten times your needs.

This is the same as internal force training. You change “dollars” to “units of internal force”. If you generate a million units of internal force a month when your needs are only ten thousand units, you need not worry about your best training procedure. Even if you generate only one tenth of your potential, you still have ten times more force than your needs. Just continue training the way you have been doing, but taking care not to over-train, following the three golden rules of practice, namely don’t worry, don’t intellectualize, enjoy your practice.

Is it fair to say that you can generate a million units of internal force? Let us do some comparison. Suppose a student in another school is lucky enough to train internal force, and he develops 20,000 units of internal force a month. You develop 1,000,000 units, which is 50 times more. So the question is whether it is justifiable to estimate that you are 50 times more efficient.

You develop so much force in just one session. From practical experience of students training internal force, it is reasonable to say that he does not develop a similar amount of force in 50 days. So the estimate is justified.

Is it reasonable to say that a person’s needs to carry on life healthily are 10,000 units of internal force? By leading a healthy life is meant that he is not sick nor in pain, he can eat and sleep, and do his work and enjoy his play. We assign 10,000 units of internal force to carry out such activities.

Not many people have a change to train internal force. We assign 20,000 units to a person who has genuinely and successfully trained internal force. In other words, a person with internal force will have double the amount of force to carry out the normal life of a healthy person. From everyday experience, this is a reasonable estimate.



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Holistic Health Cultivation Centre

Holistic Health Cultivation Centre

The Holistic Health Cultivation Centre, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, which has an outstanding record of helping people overcome so-called incurable diseases conducted an Introductory Chi Kung Course from 11th June to 15th June 2015. The course was taught by Sifu Dr Foong Tuck Meng and Sifu Wong Chun Nga.

During a special training session taught by Grandmaster Wong Kiew Kit, the Grandmaster mentioned two important points:

  1. As a matter of course, students who daily and correctly practice the exercises taught at the course will overcome their illness if they are sick, or will prevent illness happening if they are already healthy.

  2. Students should choose the right techniques and practice at the right level to attain their aim of overcoming illness or maintaining good health.

Grandmaster Wong explained the difference between “as a matter of course” and “as a matter of fact”. If a person drove on an expressway from Kuala Lumpur to Singapore, arriving at Singapore was a matter of course. But as a matter of fact, he might not arrive, if, for example, he stopped half way or turned off to other roads.

Grandmaster Wong also pointed out that medical chi kung, which was meant to overcome or prevent illness, was the lowest in the following hierarchy of chi kung

  1. Medical Chi Kung

  2. Chi Kung for Health and Vitality

  3. Chi Kung for Scholars

  4. Chi Kung for Warriors

  5. Spiritual Chi Kung

If a practitioner practiced at a higher level, i.e. if his chi kung was too powerful, he might harm himself. It was like, Grandmaster Wong explained, asking an untrained person to run a marathon or lift heavy weights.

Hence, practitioners who wished to overcome or prevent illness must not practice at a high level even when they had the knowledge and ability to do so. It was the same in daily life. One must chose the best method and operate it at an appropriate way that fulfilled his needs.

This is Day 2 of an Introductory Chi Kung Course from 11th to 15th June 2015 conducted by Holistic Health Cultivation Centre which has an outstanding record of helping people overcome their so-call incurable diseases.


Grandmaster Wong Kiew KitThe Way of the Master, written by my Sifu, Grandmaster Wong Kiew Kit, is now officially launched.

You can order the book through Amazon or write a review.

You can also read more delightful stories, or order the special edition directly.

Please enjoy one of the memorable stories from my Sifu’s book below:


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The One-Finger Zen hand form in One-Finger Shooting Zen

Dim-mark and chin-na (擒拿) are the two advanced Shaolin arts trained in One-Finger Shooting Zen. Dim-mark uses One-Finger Zen, and chin-na uses Tiger-Claw.

My sifu also told me a story of how he used chin-na from One-Finger Shooting Zen to defeat a Taekwondo master.

My sifu was teaching One-Finger Shooting Zen to a class when a Taekwondo master came in. He watched my sifu teach for a while, and asked my sifu.

“What’s it that you are teaching?”

“It’s called One-Finger Shooting Zen.” Answered my sifu.

“Can it be used for fighting?” He asked.

“Of course,” my sifu said. “Every technique in Shaolin Kungfu can be used for fighting.”

The Taekwondo master looked puzzled. “Can you show me?” He asked.

“Yes,” my sifu said. He asked his students to move aside, and then told the Taekwondo master, “Now you can attack me in any way you want.”

The Taekwondo master gave my sifu a fast side kick.

My sifu retreated a small step to avoid the kick, and used his right forearm of Single Tiger-Claw to support the kicking leg. Then, he circled his arm in the Single Tiger-Claw pattern so that his forearm and upper arm locked the opponent’s foot, his Tiger-Claw gripped the opponent’s knee with his thumb pressing on the opponent’s vital point causing him much pain. The opponent, standing on one leg and being off-balanced, was quite helpless.

“This is not a choice pattern in his situation but I want to use the same Tiger-Claw pattern in the One-Finger Shooting Zen sequence to show him there is combat application in what we are training,” my sifu added.

“Fierce Tiger Cleanses Claws”, an internal art for training Tiger-Claw

You can read more stories at our Discussion Forum. Here are details to order the special and limited edition. This edition will not be reprinted once it is sold out.


Grandmaster Wong Kiew KitThe Way of the Master, written by my Sifu, Grandmaster Wong Kiew Kit, is now officially launched.

You can order the book through Amazon or write a review.

You can also read more delightful stories, or order the special edition directly.

Please enjoy one of the memorable stories from my Sifu’s book below:


(reproduced from

My wife and our first baby, Wong Sau Foong

It was a great joy teaching these school children. But the joy was greater for my parents, my wife and me when our first child, Wong Sau Foong, arrived in 1972.

Her name, which means “Beautiful Phoenix”, was bestowed upon her by Immortal Li, a patron immortal in Sifu Ho Fatt Nam’s school , which also acted as a temple.

Sau Foong is our first bundle of joy who brought a lot of happiness to our family. When she was small, she stayed with my parents in Penang and was a special pet of my mother. I remember that my mother used to tie Sau Foong’s hair on top of her head like a little tree when she was a baby girl.

Like me, she loves reading. And like me too, she chooses teaching as her profession. She won a scholarship to study the Teaching of English as a Second Language in Bognor Regis in southern England. I did not teach chi kung in England then but in other countries in Europe like Spain and Portugal, but I made a special trip to England to see her. She stayed with a lovely couple called John and Bernie, and their son and daughter. Sau Foong became part of the family.

Bognor Regis is a beautiful little seaside town along the south coast of England facing France. I landed in London and took a train to West Sussex passing through some of the most beautiful countryside I had seen. When I arrived at Bognor Regis, the time was 5 o’clock in the evening but it was already dark as it was winter. Sau Foong waited for me at the railway station and we took a cab to her house.

The next day, we walked to the town, and through a park to the university college where she studied. We also went to the beach and looked across to France. John also took me in his car for sightseeing in the surrounding area.

When Sau Foong returned to Malaysia after completing her studies in England, she was very lucky to be posted to Penang, which was the hope of many teachers. She taught in Convent Light Street, which is a premier girl school in the country. Despite being new, she was made a discipline teacher of the school.

Although she loves teaching very much, at my suggestion she resigned from the school to help me with some business venture. But teaching is her love, besides her husband, of course. Sau Foong and Teoh Swee Fatt, an accountant, were happily married in 2004. Sau Foong returned to the teaching profession, teaching English in a university college in Penang.

She returns to our house in Sungai Petani every weekend to be with us. And when she returns to her condominium in Penang, my wife will always cook a lot of dishes for her and her husband to take back with them.

“At least they can have some home cooking,” my wife is fond of saying.

“This,” I muse to myself, “is a mother’s love for her daughter.”

Sau Foong and me

You can read more stories at our Discussion Forum. Here are details to order the special and limited edition. This edition will not be reprinted once it is sold out.


(reproduced from

chi kung, qigong

According to chi kung philosophy all diseases can be overcome

Question 1

Can you tell us more about heart to heart transmission?

— Dagmar, Germany


Heart to heart transmission is self-explanatory. It means the transfer of knowledge, skills, wisdom or realization from the heart of the teacher to the heart of the student. However, like many arts such as chi kung and spiritual cultivation, the uninitiated may still not understand the meaning even when it is clearly explained.

A good example is “chi”, or energy. Students in our school do not ask what chi is because they realize its meaning through direct experience. But many chi kung practitioners still ask what chi is despite having practiced chi kung, or what they think is chi kung, for many years. It is because they do not have a direct experience of chi.

All great arts are not merely taught by a teacher to his students, but are transmitted by him to then from heart to heart. It is failing to appreciate this fact, mainly due to a lack of direct experience, that many people think, mistakenly, that they can learn great arts from books or videos, or that all teachers of these arts are the same.

It is also due to a failure to appreciate this fact that some people ask me what chi kung exercises they should practice to overcome certain illness. It is not the kind of exercises they perform, i.e. the techniques, but how they perform them, i.e. the skills, that are crucial in enabling them to overcome illness. In other words, even when they know the best techniques but lack the necessary skills, they would not overcome their illness. Skills are best acquired from a competent teacher. On the other hand, even when a person has only mediocre techniques but good skills, he may overcome his illness.

It is because of our understanding of this fact about techniques and skills, that we have become very cost-effective in our training. Indeed, we are cost-effective to a ridiculous extent, that our students can attain in one month what it takes even masters a year to attain!

Masters take a much longer time to attain similar results because they do not differentiate between techniques and skills. They practice appropriate techniques dedicatedly and develop the necessary skills unknowingly, which may happen haphazardly. Only when the necessary skills are present during their training that the desired benefits result. Hence, they do not have the great advantage of accumulated benefit even when they practice everyday, because, as they are unaware of them, the necessary skills do not occur every time they practice.

This understanding between techniques and skills constitute a crucial part of heart to heart transmission. It is skills that are transmitted from heart to heart, not techniques.

Let us take Cosmic Shower as an illustration. An excellent technique for Cosmic Shower is Carrying the Moon. Students may practice Carrying the Moon correctly and diligently, but they may not have a cosmic shower. Indeed, most of them do not have even an energy flow. They practice the technique as gentle physical exercise, not as an art of energy.

Some of these dedicated students may eventually, but without their conscious awareness, develop the skills of generating an energy flow. Next, usually after many years, a very few of these dedicated students may experience a cosmic shower after they have unknowingly developed the necessary skills.

Our students are very lucky. When they take a course on Cosmic Shower, the necessary skills are transmitted to them. By applying these skills they can have a cosmic shower in just one day! As I mentioned earlier, this is ridiculous, but true.

How do our students know that they have a cosmic shower? In principle it is the same as asking how do people know they eat an orange or drink some coffee. They know from direct experience. Our students know they have a cosmic shower as surely as those eating oranges or drinking coffee know they eat oranges or drink coffee. Those who have no experience of a cosmic shower, eating oranges or drinking coffee will not know regardless of how well the events are described to them.

The transmission must be from heart to heart, not merely giving instructions from mouth to ear. Let us take an example. A teacher may ask his students to relax, which incidentally is a very important requirement in any internal cultivation. The instruction comes from the teacher’s mouth, and enters the students’ ears. But the students may not be relaxed. No matter how well they perform the techniques, they will not get the benefit of the art.

On the other hand, when a teacher from our school asks his students to relax, it is transmitted from his heart to his students’ heart. He sincerely wants his students to relax so that his teaching is successful, and his students genuinely want to relax so that they derive the benefit of the training. When I teach a class on Cosmic Shower, I sincerely want to impart the necessary skills, and the students genuine want to follow the instructions so as to get the desired results.

Question 2

Are you able to treat schizophrenia? My son has audio hallucinations. They began in 2006. He was treated by a grand qigong master. The voices subsided for 2 years. They returned he recieve another treatment. However eventually the treatments stopped being effective. He continued his qigong exercises and herbs. It was not successful. I am still hopeful qigong can help. Are you able to successfully treat him?

— Cathy, USA


According to qigong philosophy, there is no such a thing as an incurable disease. In other words, all diseases, including schizophrenia, can be overcome by practicing genuine, high-level qigong.

However, this does not necessarily mean that all patients will be cured of their diseases if they practice genuine, high-level qigong. This is because other factors besides genuine. high-level qigong are at work in overcoming diseases. For example, if a patient does not practice correctly or sufficiently, or his illness has gone beyond a threshold, he would not be cured even when he has a rare opportunity to practice genuine, high-level qigong.

Nevertheless, we are happy and proud to say that many people who suffered from schizophrenia completely recovered their good health after practicing qigong learnt from us. This webpage gives some examples of remarkable recovery. You can also find many other examples from my website and at our Shaolin Wahnam Discussion Forum.

I would recommend that your son attend my Intensive Chi Kung Course. Please apply to my secretary for registration if your son wishes to attend. Besides overcoming illness, the course gives many other benefits.

Taming Tiger

The opening pattern in the Taming Tiger Set is an excellent way to train internal force

Question 3

One thing that confuses me, though, is the methodology of training. The sifu told me that the first two stages of his school’s training were predominantly external, followed by internal cultivation.

I remember you mentioned that during your training with Uncle Righteousness, he emphasized using strength and striking a wooden dummy. I also remember that one of your sihings who specialized in the Triple Stretch set broke a staff he was using when his internal force shook through it.

Did Uncle Righteousness teach in a similar way to this school, first emphasizing ‘using strength’ and then teaching internal force in later levels, for example when teaching Triple Stretc

— Fredrick Chu, USA

Editorial Note: Fredrick’s other questions can be accessed at June 2015 Part 2 issue of the Question-Answer Series.


Almost all schools other than the so-called internal schools train in this way. They start with external training. Because of their dedicated training over a long time, they develop internal force, often without calling it internal force.

The so-called internal schools start with “soft” training (but not internal training). Even when their students are dedicated over a long time, they never develop any internal force, though sometimes some of them talk about internal force as if they have it.

This was the reason why your sisook, Anthony Spinicchia, told us in Hawaii that he found “external” masters had more internal force than so-called “internal” masters.

Our school is a rare exception. We have external and internal, hard and soft training right at the start.

Question 4

I’ve noticed that the students who are more senior than me were using a lot of tension when practicing the greeting pattern and beginning section of the Taming the Tiger set. Sifu wrote a blog post recently hypothesizing that some students who saw their masters demonstrate force in a manner that caused their hands and arms to vibrate, tried duplicating the vibration, but with muscular tension. Many of the demonstrations I’ve seen on YouTube of practitioners from the Hoong Ka lineage show a lot of tension with their lineage greeting pattern, Five Animals set (especially the Dragon section of the set), and Iron Wire.


You sifu is right. The masters had internal force, and the students did not have. The students imitated the external form of the master without knowing its inner significance. This is known in Chinese (Cantonese) as “zi kei phew ye pat zi kei nui”, which my Wing Choon master, Sifu Choy Hoong Choy, often said.

The obvious external appearance was the vibration of the master’s hand due to his internal force. The students did not have internal force, but they imitated the master’s movement. So they purposely shook their hands, moving their fingers. Their action was voluntary, whereas the master’s action was involuntary.

This imitation was most noticeable in Silat, the Malay art of attack and defence. I believe in its early history, Silat was much influenced by Baguazhang. Many Baguazhang masters from the Chinese imperial guards came to Indonesia and Malaysia (called Malaya at that time) to teach the guards of the local sultans. The masters had much internal force and their hands vibrated. The locak students tried to imitate them, with the result that today many Silat practitioners purposely move their fingers often without knowing why.

At least these Silat students do not harm themselves. These movements are often called “bunga” or “flower”, i.e. meant for show. Their combat applications are called “buah”, or “fruit”.

But tensing their muscles in their attempt to produce force, like what many Hoong Ka students do, can be very harmful, and worse, their harm is insidious. Their tension is due to practicing internal force training methods, especially in Iron Wire, as isometric exercise. They can develop a lot of power, but the power comes from muscular strength and not from internal force. Some of them even go a step farther by lifting weights.

A tell-tale sign of their mistake is that they have big muscles. It is alarming that they don’t seem to realize that masters like Wong Fei Hoong and Lam Sai Weng, who were very powerful, did not have big muscles.

Golden Bell

Sifu Wong Chun Nga demonstrating Golden Bell where he took strikes by a chopper without sustaining any injury from Sifu Mark Appleford

Question 5

I want to avoid using muscular tension, as my personal experience is that I’ve gotten better results through internal force training. To avoid using tension, should I instead emphasize consolidating and vibrating my internal force (and later letting it flow) instead of using muscular tension?


It is unwise to use muscular tension even if you don’t produce any internal force. It is just silly to use muscular tension when you know how to produce internal force with appropriate methods even if the internal force produced is less than muscular strength. It is very silly if you have personal experience that the internal force produced is better than muscular strength from muscular tension.

You just avoid muscular tension. You don’t have to purposely emphasize consolidating and vibrating your internal force and later letting it flow. You just practice the methods as you have learnt them, without adding anything extra.

If your sifu or whoever competent teacher teaching you does not ask you to consolidate force, you don’t have to consolidate force. If he asks you to consolidate force, you consolidate force.

It is actually very simple. If your teacher asks you to do ABC, you just do ABC. You don’t do ABC and then add D. You also don’t do CBA or EFG.

Of course you must, before you started to learn from a teacher, ensure that he is competent, and his students have the result practicing the art will give.

Question 6

To link up with my questions with the Small Universe above, are Hoong Ka practitioners known for attaining the Small or Big Universe? I remember hearing in the discussion forum that some people felt the Iron Wire set was akin to a Forceful Small Universe.


Hoong Ka practitioners and practitioners of any kungfu style normally do not attend the Small or Big Universe. Only rare masters, after many, many years of dedicated training may attain the Small Universe, and rarely the Big Universe, and often without their conscious knowing.

Only a few people at masters’ levels had a chance to learn the Small Universe. Even these masters took about 10 years or more to attain it. They would give a celebration on attaining the Small Universe.

It was, and still is, to most other people outside our school, ridiculous to attain the Small Universe in a special course of a few days. Attaining the Small Universe in my Small Universe Course is the norm, not the exception.

But strictly speaking these successful course participants did not attain the Small Universe in a few days. They had already spent at least two or three years, usually more, accumulating their chi at their dan tian. I took a few days in the course to activate their small universal chi flow.

Why do our students take two or three years to attain the Small Universe when past masters took more than ten? One important reason is that we understand the underlying philosophy. Another important reason is that we differentiate between techniques and skills. A third important reason is that we employ the best techniques and skills and have accumulative effect.

kungfu staff

Lau Ka Kungfu is well known for its staff

Question 7

As an interesting side note, when I asked the Hoong Ka sifu about his school’s Iron Vest and Golden Bell, he said that some of the benefits he most enjoyed about were a greatly enhanced immune system, longevity, and overall youthfulness. Since he is about 59, but he looks 30 and is very physically fit and agile in addition to being full of laughter, I’m very certain he has attained good levels in his training.


The Hoong Ka sifu is an inspiration.

Those who harm themselves by lifting weight or generous exchange of blows, are angry and depressed, and look 59 when they are just 30, should learn from this sifu’s example, if not actually from him in person.

Question 8

I also had a question about some kung fu history. According to the Hoong Ka sifu, some schools of Hoong Ka incorporated Lau Ka kung fu into their training, and this school is one of them. I began learning a set named Lau Ka Kuen and it feels similar to the feeling I get from practicing the Cross-Road at Four Gates set. Could you explain a little about Lau Ka kung fu’s history and general characteristics?


This is no surprise as both Hoong Ka Kungfu and Lau Ka Kungfu came from Southern Shaolin, and Cross-Road at Four Gates was the fundamental set at the southern Shaolin Temple at Quanzhou.

After the burning of the southern Shaolin Temple at Quanzhou, the Venerable Chee Seen built another southern Shaolin Temple on the Nine-Lotus Mountain. This second southern Shaolin Temple was also burnt, and some masters escaped.

One of these Shaolin masters escaped to Guangxi Province in the western part of South China and taught Shaolin Kungfu to Lau Sam Ngan.

Lau Sam Ngan was his nick-name, which means “Three-Eye Lau”. During a sparring using staffs with his master, he was hit on the forehead, and a scar remained like a third eye.

Lau Sam Ngan spread this style of Shaolin Kungfu, which was name after him, meaning Lau Family Kungfu. It is a hard, external style, using low stances and short strikes. Lau Ka Kungfu is well know for its staff.


(reproduced from

Holistic Health Cultivation Centre

Holistic Health Cultivation Centre

The Holistic Health Cultivation Centre, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, which has an outstanding record of helping people overcome so-called incurable diseases conducted an Introductory Chi Kung Course from 11th June to 15th June 2015. The course was taught by Sifu Dr Foong Tuck Meng and Sifu Wong Chun Nga.

During a special training session taught by Grandmaster Wong Kiew Kit, the Grandmaster mentioned two important points:

  1. As a matter of course, students who daily and correctly practice the exercises taught at the course will overcome their illness if they are sick, or will prevent illness happening if they are already healthy.

  2. Students should choose the right techniques and practice at the right level to attain their aim of overcoming illness or maintaining good health.

Grandmaster Wong explained the difference between “as a matter of course” and “as a matter of fact”. If a person drove on an expressway from Kuala Lumpur to Singapore, arriving at Singapore was a matter of course. But as a matter of fact, he might not arrive, if, for example, he stopped half way or turned off to other roads.

Grandmaster Wong also pointed out that medical chi kung, which was meant to overcome or prevent illness, was the lowest in the following hierarchy of chi kung

  1. Medical Chi Kung

  2. Chi Kung for Health and Vitality

  3. Chi Kung for Scholars

  4. Chi Kung for Warriors

  5. Spiritual Chi Kung

If a practitioner practiced at a higher level, i.e. if his chi kung was too powerful, he might harm himself. It was like, Grandmaster Wong explained, asking an untrained person to run a marathon or lift heavy weights.

Hence, practitioners who wished to overcome or prevent illness must not practice at a high level even when they had the knowledge and ability to do so. It was the same in daily life. One must chose the best method and operate it at an appropriate way that fulfilled his needs.

This is Day 1 of an Introductory Chi Kung Course from 11th to 15th June 2015 conducted by Holistic Health Cultivation Centre which has an outstanding record of helping people overcome their so-call incurable diseases.


(reproduced from

Health and Vitality

Grandmaster Wong and Sifu Anthony Spinicchia are examples of good health and vitality

Question 1

How do we know whether we are practicing correctly?

— Chew, Australia

Answer by Grandmaster Wong Kiew Kit

This is a very important question. Not only it enables us to avoid wasting time, but also increases our cost-effectiveness.

We know we are practicing an exercise correctly when we have the effects practicing that exercise will give. At a longer scale, we know we are practicing an art correctly when we have the results practicing that art is meant to give.

For example, we know we practiced “Lifting the Sky” correctly just now because our objective in that practice session was to generate a chi flow, and we had a chi flow.

In our case because we practice high-level chi kung and we are cost-effective, we have the expected effects immediately. Other practitioners will need a few months before they know whether they have the desired effects.

We know we practice chi kung correctly because we enjoy the benefits that practicing chi kung is meant to give. Practicing chi kung is meant to give good health and vitality. We have good health and vitality after a few months of our chi kung practice. Other practitioners who practice a lower level of chi kung or are less cost-effective will need a few years.

But a lot of chi kung practitioners still remain sick and weak despite practicing chi kung for many years. They did not ask the question you did, or else they would know, if they were courageous enough to admit to themselves, they had not been practicing genuine chi kung. They would not have wasted many years.

Alternatively, the art they practice may be genuine but they are not practicing correctly, or else they would have obtained the results the art is meant to give. Had they asked the question, they would have been more cost-effective in their practice.


(reproduced from

students in chi flow

Different people manifested different movements in spontaneous qi flow in Sifu Wong’s class in Gutenstein, Austria. On the far right is Master Sylesvester Lohinnger, Sifu Wong’s senior student


I have been told that one must abstain from sex for 100 days upon pratcising qiqong. Is this true? If so, what is the reason?

— John, Malaysia — January 2000

Answer by Grandmaster Wong Kiew Kit

The answer to whether one should abstain from sex for 100 days upon practising qigong is “yes” and “no”, depending on numerous variables.

In the past students abstained from sex for at least 100 days upon practising qigong. Although it was not an absolute condition — in the sense that if the condition was not fulfilled one could not practise qigong, or that he could harm himself — this was highly recommended. Some masters might made it their requirement for their students. After the 100 days, students could revert back to their normal sex life.

The 100 days constitued the foundation period whereby sufficient energy could be acquired and stored at the abdominal dan tian (or energy field). Without this foundation — like the starting capital of a busniss venture — it would be difficult to have satisfactory result. In the past, learning chi kung from a master was a rare opportunity, so students generally chose abstinence from sex to missing a rare opportunity.

What happened if a student had sex during the 100 days? Unless he had sex extravagantly, it usually did not cause any harm, but his progress would not be as good as his classmates. By the end of the 100 days when the master checked their progress, this sex-satisfied student would be found wanting. As he might not have the required amount of energy stored for the next stage of training, he might be left out, either wittingly by his master for not fulfilling a requirement or by his own inability to keep up even though the master might teach him the new techniques.

Today, conditions and needs are different. Because of changing standards, what was considered “satisfactory result” in the past will now be remarkable result. Because of changing needs, most chi kung practitioners today do not actually need remarkable result. In the past, overcoming pain and illness was not even a need amongst those who had the rare opportunity to practise chi kung, because they were already healthy and fit. What they needed would be sufficient energy to spar comfortably for an hour or two, or make a hole in a wall with just one strike. This would be satisfactory result in the past.

Hence, when students ask me whether they should abstain from sex, even at the start of their chi kung training, I tell them it is not necessary — unless they aim for remarkable result, or on the other hand they are very sick to start with. As students today need satisfactory result like overcoming pain and illness, or vitality to enjoy their daily work and play — and not remarkable result like striking a hole in a wall — they can achieve their objective even with normal sex during their chi kung training period.

Without sex, they would acheve their objective faster, but the improvement is relately marginal and it is unnecessary to make the sacrifice of abstinence from sex. For example, with abstinence, one may overcome his diabetes or ulcers in six months, but with sexual enjoyment added in, he may need nine months.

While the remarkable result of chi kung is wonderful, we must also remember other importnat aspects of daily living. If abstinence from sex disrupts family life, or makes a person aggressive due to his pent-up sexual energy which will surely increase as a result of his chi kung training, chi kung would then be a detrimental rather than a rewarding experience.


Reproduced from Question 2 in Selection of Questions and Answers — January 2000 Part 2


(reproduced from

Sifu Wong and his wife

A recent photograph of Sifu Wong and his wife holidaying in England

Question 1

Sifu, I believe that you are one of the wisest and most compassionate men alive today, and I place great value and worth on your thoughts and opinions. I have been married for almost one year now and my wife and I have just had our first child, a boy. What advice can you give me to be a good husband and father?

— Kevin, USA

Answer by Grandmaster Wong Kiew Kit

Congratulations for being a husband and father, and thank you for your kind words.

Being a husband and father is one of the most wonderful things that can happen to a man. So treasure your blessing. With the blessing comes responsibility. The most basic responsibility of a good husband and father is to provide for your family to the best of your ability. Provisions involve not just physical wants and comfort, like decent food and housing, but more importantly spiritual needs, like loving care and spending time with them rewardingly.

Providing for their spiritual needs does not need money, but it needs time and effort. If one really treasures his wife and child, he can readily find the time and effort, irrespective of how busy he may imagine himself to be or even really be.

If you treat your wife not as someone who happens to marry you, but someone who is going to spend the best part of her life for your welfare, which is actually the case, and treat your son not just as an incidental outcome of some pleasure, but as a living manifestation of your love and joy, which is also actually the case, you will find spending time with them not a responsibility but a special privilege.

Marriage is sacred. Personally I believe a man should have one and only one wife. You have chosen your wife. So you just have to make sure your marriage can only be successful. You have no other choice, and there is no looking back. Be generous in your attitude. Assume the position that you, and not your wife, are the one to take the initiative to ensure a successful, happy marriage. When you have set the right initiative, your wife will naturally respond.

Question 2

I also wish to raise my son in the spirit of Shaolin, in a Zen environment. How should I go about this? At what age do I introduce Shaolin and Zen principles to him? And what age can he begin to practice Shaolin Kung Fu and Chi Kung?


Yours is a good choice, one of the best a father can do for his son. There are many ways to realize your intention. In the past, the ideal way was to send him to the Shaolin Monastery as a lay disciple, but this is not applicable today because traditional Shaolin arts are no longer taught there.

An excellent alternative is to send your son to a real Shaolin master. Another alternative is to train under a real Shaolin master yourself, and later teach your son the way the master taught you.

These ways, while possible, are not easy. In the past to be accepted into the Shaolin Monastery was extremely difficult. Today to find a real Shaolin master willing to teach you or your son is equally difficult.

In theory you can introduce Shaolin and Zen principles to your son, and he can begin practising Shaolin Kungfu and Chi Kung at any age. For example, when your son is a baby you can frequently recite Shaolin principles to him, letting his subconscious mind absorb the teaching.

And you can soak him in medicated water and then methodically strike him so that he will grow up with “copper skin and iron bones”, like what the female Shaolin master Miew Chooi Fa did to her famous son Fong Sai Yoke.

But in practice, it is advisable to let your son grow to about twelve years old before you let him practise Shaolin Kungfu and Chi Kung, and about twenty five before you formally introduce him to Shaolin and Zen principles. But informally you can let him begin earlier — as soon as he can run or can comprehend intelligently. For example you can let him perform in a fun-ful way “Lifting the Sky”, and impress upon him that if he wants any worthy result he has to put in time and effort.

Question 3

My wife also would like to lose some weight that she gained during the pregnancy. Can she practice Drawing the Moon, Lifting the Sky, Separating Water, and Circular Chi Flow? She is breastfeeding. Will these exercises affect that at all?


“Drawing the Moon” is an excellent exercise for loosing excess weight, especially when the excess is around the waist.

After giving birth to our first child, my wife, who was slender before, took the shape of a barrel, the result of having a lot of nourishing food during confinement. She performed “Drawing the Moon” every morning and night, and regained her slender figure within six months.

After about 30 years of happy marriage and having given me 5 lovely children, she actually has a more attractive figure now than when I first met her. She does not do any aerobics, go on diet or follow any of the many slimming programmes on the market; she only practises the same three basic chi kung exercises I have been teaching for years to beginning students — “Lifting the Sky”, “Pushing Mountains” and “Carrying the Moon”. Besides having an attractive figure, my wife also has sparkling eyes and rosy complexion.

If your wife practises “Lifting the Sky”, “Separating Water”, and Circular Chi Flow correctly, these exercises will enhance her breast-feeding function as well as make her fit and healthy.

Mrs Wong and Family

Mrs Wong Kiew Kit (right) and four of her five children in Beijing during their China visit with Sifu Wong in May 2000.


(reproduced from

Holistic Health Cultivation Center

Question 1

Sifu I am still unclear about the harm that could be brought by over training or the training is too powerful.

— Dr Foong, Director of Holistic Health Cultivation Centre, Kuala Lumpur


Your question, or comment, is illuminating, and I would like to give a more detailed answer.

Over-training is a unique problem in our school. By “unique” I don’t mean that no one in the past over-trained. What I mean is that no school as a whole in the past and at present over-train at a scale and depth as we do.

Our over-training is closely related to our unbelievable cost-effectiveness. Our student can attain in one month what most other students would attain in one year — if they are lucky enough to practice genuine chi kung or genuine kungfu.

Most people, understandably, may consider us boastful over this statement, and some may become angry. They may concede that our school is twice better than most schools, or may be even three times better, which is a lot.

When I was a school teacher many years ago, I earned $2000 a month. When a colleague earned $4000 a month, that was a lot. If another colleague earned $6000 per month, that was incredible. (I was, of course, happy for them.)

But most people would not believe that we are more than 10 times more cost-effective than others, just as most teachers would not believe that a teacher could earn more than $20,000 a month.

Yet our typical student is more than 10 times more cost-effective than most other students, just as some rare teachers, not necessarily teaching in public schools, earn more than $20,000, though this is a small sum for some high-income earners like doctors and businessmen.

My conclusion that our typical students gain more than 10 times the benefits gained by other students is not made out of imagination, but based on facts.

Our typical students have internal force after practicing for three months. How many other kungfu practitioners have internal force after practicing for three years? Our typical students can use our kungfu for combat after practicing for six months. How many other kungfu practitioners can use their kungfu for combat after practicing for six years.

Your Holistic Health Cultivation Centre has helped many people suffering from so-called incurable diseases, including cancer, to recover after undergoing healing sessions for a few months. How many patients of so-called incurable diseases overcome their illness after treatment elsewhere after many years?

These examples are facts, not opinions. Anyone can find out whether the statements are true.

Hence, when our typical student gets 10 times the result of what other students get in other school, our students are over-training. Over-training means the benefits one receives from his training is too much or too fast for his body to adjust to, resulting in unpleasantness, tiredness, pain or other adverse effects. These adverse effects are a sigh to tell the practitioner to slow down his training so as to allow the body more time for adjustment.

There are two main ways to slow down one’s training — by reducing the time of training or reducing the intensity of training.

When one trains an hour a day, he can reduce the training by training for 15 minutes. But if he trains for only 15 minutes a day, like what our students do, there is not much time for him to reduce, though now, because of our increased efficiency, I advise our students to train for only 10 minutes.

We can also reduce the time of training by reducing its regularity. If a student trains for 10 minutes a day everyday, and still finds himself over-training, he can train once in two days, or once in three days. If he is advanced and powerful and still finds himself over-training, he can train just once a week.

But most of our students enjoy their training. They may not be happy training just once a week. An excellent approach to prevent over-training is to reduce its intensity. This is very effective for our instructors and advanced students who over-train.

An excellent way to reduce the intensity is not to go too deeply into a chi kung state of mind. In fact it is precisely because we enter into a deep chi kung state of mind that we have excellent result.

In theory it is simple, but in practice it may be difficult, even for our students. Here are some suggestions. Don’t take too long, like a minute, to be relaxed and clear the mind of all thoughts, and remain in this heightened level of consciousness. Take just a second or two. Relaxed, clear your mind and perform your exercise.

You can also focus on your form. If you are a beginner, get the outward form correct as best as you can. If you are advanced, aim for picture=perfect form. When you focus on your outward form, you perform the chi kung exercise more on the physical level and less on the mind level. Your result will be less, but it is still a lot compared to what other practitioners get, and minimize the possibility of you over-training.

You may notice that when students begin to learn form me, I ask them to not worry about their form. This is to get them onto the mind level and generate a chi flow. As they become more advanced, they pay more attention to their form.

Another suggestion which is negative but can prevent over-training is to purposely intellectualize and purposely tense your muscles once awhile. Tensing your muscles is not advisable, unless for specific reasons, but thinking of good thoughts while practicing is permissible. The intellectualizing will get you out of or to a shallower level of a chi kung state of mind, thus producing less result and preventing onver-training.

Purposely tensing our muscles can be useful in specific situations. When I sparred with somebody and accidentally hit him, and I sensed that my internal force was going into him, I purposely tense my muscle to prevent the flow of internal force hurting him. When you have over-trained but for some reason you still want to train, you can tense your muscles to prevent a lot of force developing. It can be uncomfortable. You have to do a gentle chi flow to clear the blockage.

Performing physical activities like practicing kungfu sets at a physical level, sparring with classmates, or going out with your family or friends, is a good way to expend energy, thus reducing over-cleansing due to over-training.

Remember that practicing chi kung is to enrich our life and the lives of others, and not to enslave ourselves to it. If you can get benefits in 10 minutes, you don’t have to practice for an hour. Use the time to enjoy other wholesome activities.

Over-training is very important in healing, i.e. teaching patients at a level much higher than they can absorb, or enabling them to recover faster then they can cope with. I shall deal with this topic in the next question you ask.

Question 2

A healer told me that too powerful chi kung would not harm a patient. I told him that it would be harmful. The healer said that he was already an expert in chi kung healing. What is your comment, Sifu?


You are right and the healer wrong.

Too powerful chi kung is not only harmful to sick people, it is also harmful to healthy persons. It is like asking someone to run a marathon or lift heavy weights.

Even when he is healthy, if he is untrained, running a marathon or lifting weights will be harmful to him. If he is sick, it will aggravate his illness or may even kill him.

It is like taking medication. If a doctor asks a patient to take two pills, the patient must take two pills. If he takes 10 pills, he may be killed.

As you know very well, chi kung for healing is the lowest level of chi kung. The other levels in ascending order are chi kung fro health, chi kung for scholars, chi kung for warriors, and chi kung for spiritual cultivation. Although it is at the lowest level, chi kung for healing is the most useful today. This is because many people today, unlike in the past, practice chi kung to overcome their pain and illness.

If a healer teaches chi kung for warriors to sick people , he may kill them. It is like putting an engine of an aeroplane in a small car.

That healer may be an expert if he knows a lot about chi kung healing, but he may not be a master healer. A master healer is determined not by how much he knows but how well he helps patients overcome their illness.

chi kung in Taiwan

One way to prevent over-training is not to enter deeply into a chi kung state of mind

Question 3

Someone told me that as long as a person spent one hundred thousand hours on an art, he became a genius. I don’t agree because there are many other factors involved for one to become a genius or a real expert. What is your opinion, Sifu?


I agree with you, and disagree with the person who said that if one practiced an art one hundred thousand hours he would become a genius. If his practice is wrong, he becomes a big fool. Not only he has waste his time and effort, he has harmed himself, often seriously and unnecessarily.

This is the case with many martial artists today. They practice a martial art so as to become healthy and be able to defend themselves. But the more they practice the more unhealthy they become, and they cannot defend themselves. They merely exchange blows and kicks with their sparring partners in free sparring, and their injuries are usually unattended to.

Here is a list of factors a student may work on to get the best benefits from the practice of any art.

  1. Have a sound philosophical understanding of the art.

  2. Define his aims and objectives in pursuing the art.

  3. Find the best available teacher according to his (the student’s) resources.

  4. Practice the art according to the way the teacher teaches, and not according to the way the student thinks the art should be practiced.

  5. Periodically access his result according to his set aims and objectives.

The same guidelines can also be applied to a patient seeking to overcome his illness and attain good health, vitality and longevity.

  1. Have a philosophical understanding of his illness and healing.

  2. Set aims and objectives, like overcoming his illness, and attaining good health, vitality and longevity.

  3. Seek the best healer according to his resources.

  4. Practice the healing procedure according to what the healer prescribes and not according to what the patient thinks to be done.

  5. Periodically access his result according to his set aims and objectives.

Question 4

I’ve been reviewing some videos to further increase my knowledge of what the world thinks about Baguazhang and recently saw a few Baguazhang weapons videos.

— Fredrick Chu, USA


What you are doing will contribute much to your understanding and attainment in Baguazhang. But it is important to know that what the world thinks of Baguazhang and what videos show on Baguazhang weapons may not be what Baguazzhang and Baguazhang weapons really are. This awareness is even more important in many other styles of kungfu, chi kung and spiritual cultivation.

Indeed, it is shocking how much kungfu, chi kung and spiritual cultivation have deviated from their original purposes and practice as shown in what the world thinks of these arts, and in what videos, even by well known world masters, show these arts to be.

What the world thinks of kungfu is often represented by Bruce Lee, despite the fact that Bruce Lee rejected both kungfu philosophy and methodology. For example, Bruce Lee thought that stance training, which forms the foundation of all kungfu, was ineffective, and his training methods were precisely what traditional kingfu masters warned against.

If you examine videos showing free sparring amongst kungfu practitioners, with the exception of those from Shaolin Wahnam, virtually all of them use boxing and kick-boxing, with hardly any kungfu techniques. If you watch videos on kungfu weapons, again with the exception of those from Shaolin Wahnam, there are hardly any on using kungfu weapons in combat, which is precisely the reason why the weapons are for.

If you watch videos on the demonstration of a Guandao, or the Knife of Guan, which is a long, heavy weapon, you will see that the controlling hand of most demonstrators holds the weapon just below its blade, and that the blade of the weapon is flimsy, which negate its advantage of being a long weapon, and a heavy weapon. Holding the weapon just below its blade would not enable its practitioner to use it on horseback or to cut it through the armour of an opponent, which were precisely what a Guandao was for.

Small Universe

A Small Universe Course where participants attain a “real break-through”

Question 5

One of the weapons that many people mention when discussing Baguazhang is the Deer Horn Knife (I’ve also heard them called the Meridian Knives and the Mandarin Duck Knives). I have to admit, the weapons look rather spectacular, having many cutting edges and sharp points.

I was wondering what are the special characteristics of the Deer Horn Knives? How do they enhance Baguazhang practice? Are certain weapons more conducive to enhancing or bringing out the best of Baguazhang, such as the straight sword, the single knife, or the huge “Bagua dadao”?


The Dear Horn Knives are so named because diagrammatically they resemble the antlers of a stag. They are also called Meridian Knives and Mandarin Duck Knives because they are always used in pair.

Indeed, they look spectacular. The weapons are just sharp edges and points.

The special characteristics of the Dear Horn Knives are its sharp blades and points, which make them highly destructive. It is almost impossible for an opponent to dislodge the weapons from the exponent. The horns of the weapons can be used to lock or capture an opponent’s weapon.

Any hit of the weapons will cause bloodshed. The main techniques are cutting, slicing and piercing.

Interestingly, while the Deer Horn Knives are closely associated with Baguazhang, their training does not enhance Baguazhang practice. Circulating the hands round the body is a special feature of Baguazhang, but the sharp blades and points of the Deer Horn Knives do not facilitate this feature. But the agility of Baguazhmg contributes to an effective application of these weapons, so long as the exponent does not circulate the weapons round his body and cut himself.

The straight sword is the most conducive in bringing out the best in Baguazhang, and vice versa. In both the sword and Baguazhang, agility and flowing movement are of utmost importance. The swordsman, however, must not use his sword to circulate round his body like what a Baguazhang exponent does with his hands.

The Single Knife, or sabre, is also conducive in bringing out the qualities in Baguazhang, and vice versa. Circulating the sabre or the arms round the body is a frequently used skill in sabre and Baguazhang performance and application.

The huge Bagua Dadao is a large sabre that is quite out of size. Because of its huge size, it is good for training internal force or mechanical strength for those who have no internal force. Personally, I do not favour it because its excessive large size distract its application as a sabre

Question 6

About a week or two ago, I felt the “false breakthrough” of the Small Universe during Baguazhang Circle Walking. It was the first time that I’ve clearly felt energy flowing through meridians (normally, my energy feels more diffuse or like waves passing across my body). I was walking the circle and my posture aligned in such a way that I began clearly feeling pockets of energy flowing along the Small Universe circuit.

I was wondering if Baguazhang, or any other particular martial arts, particularly well known for achieving the Small Universe and Big Universe?


Congratulations for your break-through of the Small Universe, even though it is “false” or apparent, and not “real” or permanent. A “false break-through” does not mean it is only an illusion and that there is really no break-through.

The term “false” is used relative to “real”. A “false break-through” does not mean there is no break-through. It occurs when a bubble of energy goes round the Ren and Du Meridians, and the defilements that block the meridians are being pushed through by the bubble of energy, but they may resume their blockage after the bubble has gone through.

A “real break-through” occurs when the Du and Ren Meridians are fully filled with energy flowing continuously and harmoniously round the meridians. A real break-through of the Small Universe enables practitioners to live beyond a hundred years.

Baguazhang being an internal art is more suitable than many other kungfu styles for attaining a Small Universe. But only Baguashang masters who have practiced for many years may have this attainment. It will be faster if they learn the art of Small Universe separately. But Baguashang practitioners who practice only the external aspects of Baguazhang will never attain the Small Universe.

If all other things were equal, Wudang Taijiquan and Dragon Strength would be more effective than Baguazhang to attain the Small Universe. This is because the internal force in these two arts is more flowing than that in Baguazhang.

Your attaining a break-through of the Small Universe, even a “false” one, is remarkable. Congratulations. Such an attainment is not likely to happen in most other schools.


A historical Baguazhang course at the UK Summer Camp 2012

Question 7

Also, I remember hearing from my Sifu that Reverse Breathing is an important part of Small Universe training. I do know that at some point I would like to open the Small Universe, thanks to you, Sigung, and my Sifu’s writing about its amazing benefits.

I learnt Reverse Breathing at Goat Stance from my old Taijiquan sifu, and I had some good benefits like beginning to build and store energy at my dan tian, but I haven’t practiced it in a long time (mostly because shortly thereafter, I learnt from you and my Sifu in Florida).

Would it be worthwhile for me to begin practicing Reverse Breathing at Goat Stance if I wanted to further pursue the Small Universe, or should I wait until I’m able to spend a fair amount of time with you or my Sifu (for example, at a Small Universe course) to learn how to attain the Small Universe?


Reverse Breathing is an advanced art. It should be learnt from a competent teacher as wrong practice can cause serious problems.

When I was learning the Small Universe from my sifu, Sifu Ho Fatt Nam, I made a mistake unknowingly while practicing Reverse Breathing. My chi accumulated about an inch on one side of my dan tian (I can’t remember now whether it was on the left side or the right side). It took me about three months of remedial exercise to correct it.

Many people mistake Reverse Breathing as Chest Breathing. They are different, though they look alike. In both cases, a practitioner’s chest rises as he breaths in. It rises more in Chest Breathing than in Reverse Breathing.

But in Chest Breathing it is air that goes into the chest. In Reverse Breathing it is energy, not air, that goes into the dan tian, or flows in a small universal circuit.

You should not attempt Reverse Breathing on your own. You can learn it from your sifu if you spend a fair amount of time with him, or learn it from me at a Small Universe course.

Question 8

I was talking with Sifu recently and he told me that at my level I really needed to begin practicing regularly with other people to further refine my sparring and fighting skills. Funnily enough, shortly after the Legacy of Wong Fei Hoong Summer Camp (which I was unfortunately unable to attend), I was lucky enough to find a good school of Hoong Ka Kung Fu.

One of the things I liked immediately was the fact that the school does a lot of Asking Bridge in preparation for free sparring. Even though I haven’t had more than a handful of opportunities to train with and spar with people in the past two years, my stances, footwork, and internal force served me very well; I was routinely driving back and out-flanking people who had been in this school for about four or five years. The sifu complimented me on my solid stances and how my footwork always seemed to cut off my partner’s avenues of escape. I wanted to thank you again for teaching me those skills in Baguazhang, they are coming in handy a lot here!


This is no surprise because we pay a lot of attention on stances and footwork, but many other schools don’t. And Baguazhang is well known for footwork.

Question 9

I did have a question about Asking Bridge and “bridging” in general. I noticed that this school and many others (which I’ve seen mostly in documentaries and on YouTube) use the One Finger Zen hand-form (which they call “Bridge Hand”) and their forearms for initially contacting with an opponent’s arms, especially during or immediately after defending against a strike.

What is it about this hand-form that makes it so popular in Hoong Ka schools compared to, say, the thread hand, Tiger Claws, or open palms? I personally feel more comfortable and sensitive with the thread-hand and open palms, but that may just be my Baguazhang background.


“Bridge Hand” or “kiew sau” in Chinese (Cantonese) refers to the forearm, not the One-Finger Zen hand form. The forearm is called a “bridge” because it is the part that is usually in contact with an opponent.

The term “Bridge Hand” is usually used in Hoong Ka Kungfu, and other styles derived from Southern Shaolin. It is seldom used in internal arts like Taijiquan, Baguazhang and Xingyiquan, or styles derived from Northern Shaolin like Praying Mantis, Tantui and Wuzuquan.

Besides in our school, the One-Finger Zen hand form, which is different from “Bridge Hand”, is now found mainly in Hoong Ka Kungfu, and rarely in other kungfu styles. It is mainly used to develop internal force, and at advanced levels for dim mark, i.e. dotting energy points. However, I suspect that most students today just perform the external form of One-Finger Zen hand form without knowing its inner significance.

I once asked my sifu, Sifu Ho Fatt Nam, why the One-Finger Zen hand form was used to develop internal force. He told me that it activated the lung meridian. I followed up asking why was the lung meridian in particular activated in developing internal force. He said, in Cantonese, “fai wei hei zi fu”, which in Englsih means the lungs are the organs for energy. As developing internal force needs flowing energy, activating the lung meridians using One-Finger Zen is a very cost-effective hand form

In Hoong Ka Kungfu the One-Finger Zen hand form is used to develop internal force, though many Hoong Ka practitioners may not know how to do so, or may not even realize it. They perform the hand form because it is found in their sets, just as most kungfu practitioners of any style today perform their patterns because the patterns are found in their style, but they do not know the significance of these patterns.

In combat or even in solo performance, the thread hand using the dragon hand form, the tiger claw and the open palm are equally popular. In fact, when deflecting an opponent’s attack, like a thrust punch, Hoong Ka practitioners seldom use the One-Finger Zen hand form; they use the thread hand, the tiger claw or the open palm.

As an analogy, the Horse-Riding Stance is usually employed when developing internal force. But in combat it is seldom used.

Why is the One-Finger Zen hand form found in Hoong Ka and not in other styles. This was probably because the One-Finger Zen hand form was widely used in developing internal force in Southern Shaolin, and Hoong Ka Kungfu was the moist typical of Southern Shaolin. In fact, Hoong Ka patriarchs like Wong Fei Hoong and Lam Sai Weng called their kungfu Shaolin, and not Hoong Ka.

Then why is the One-Finger Zen hand form not found in other Southern Shaolin styles like Wing Choon and Choy-Li-Fatt. This was probably because the first patriarchs of these styles used other methods of force training. Yim Wing Choon, for example, used Siu Lin Tou which did not have the One-Finger Zen hand form. Chan Harng, the founder of Choy-Li-Fatt used a wooden man.

Editorial Note: Fredericks other questions will be continued at June 2015 Part 3 issue of the Question-Answer Series.