The Origins

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The Origin of East River   

       There are two rivers in the south of Jiangxi: Anyuan county three hundred mountains town, and Xunwu county Sam bun Bal mountains running into the northeast of Guangdong province.

"Tung Kong Source" Waterfall in the "300 Mountains"

      These 2 rivers interconnect in Heyuan town Longchuan County Bei Zhen (northeast of Guangdong province) and merge to become East River (initially named as "Chung River" and was renamed to East River at Song Dynasty,523 miles with an area of 25325 square meters)。East River is one of the largest rivers in Guangdong province. It originates at Fengshuba Reservoir , runs southeast bound to Longchuan County (Old Dragon Town)、Heyuan Town、Huiyang County 、Guanyin  Pavilion、Hengli、Boluo、 Huizhou City、Shilong,  Zhongtang Town,  Machong Town, and exits at Shizi Yang (The Lion Ocan). The martial arts in these areas are geographically known as "East River Fist", which then subdivided into various families, sects, or schools.


Preying Mantis

        Preying Mantis is one of the Xiang Xing Quan ("Imitation Boxing), also named as "Bionic Fist". In the early 20th century, Preying Mantis was not yet classified into North Preying Mantis and South Preying Mantis. Instead, the two schools developed independently in their respective regions.

        North Preying Mantis was created by Wang Long in Shangdong during the late Ming dynasty. South Preying Mantis was developed by Chow Ah Naam – Guangdong province Xingning Hakkas. Not until 1930’s when Luo Guangyu, the master of the Shandong Preying Mantis went to Hong Kong, do we realize there are significant differences between the two Preying Mantis..


Tung Kong Chow Ka-Preying Mantis (Hakka Kungfu)

      Abbreviated as Chow Gar Kow also known as South Preying Mantis. Originated from Shaolin Temple in Fujian. Its Master Chow Ah Nam was born in Guangdong Province Xing Ning who came from a wealthy family. Chow was addicted to eating and could never refrain himself from always over-eating. His indulgence caused him serious stomach problem when he was only a teenager. He consulted many doctors but could not cure the illness. One day he met an experienced monk at Shaolin Temple –Sim Yan Master who eventually cured his stomach problem. He then went to stay at Shaolin Temple and took up a cooking position. Everyone who lived there was obliged to practice martial arts for 2 hours every morning. This gained him substantial base in martial arts. One day, Chow passed by a forest and saw a mantis fighting with an acacia bird on a tree. The bird lost and fell onto the ground – this has inspired Chow to develop a form of fist based on the mantis’ fighting and defense style. He incorporated into the martial arts he had learnt at Shaolin Temple and created the “Preying Mantis”. With the help and guidance of Sim Yan Master, Chow became a famous master. People called the fist “Chow Preying Mantis”.

       Chow passed the kung fu to Wong Fook Go, then Hung Lin Harp (Great Grandmaster’s Kung Fu Senior Brother ), Lau Soei (Great Grandmaster), Lam Chk Yu(Great Grandmaster’s Kung Fu Junior Brother). At the initial stage, the Chow Preying Mantis was only taught to Hakka people, to men not women. Only when late Qing Dynasty, Lau Soei went to Hong Kong, the Chow Preying Mantis was commonly taught to all types of people.

       The characteristics of South Preying Mantis are: more short strokes than long stroke; multiple strokes in a single hit; to grasp a right timing to attack and defend when confronting with enemies; action is quick, clear and effective; head follows hands, hands protect head, elbows protect body, knees protect the lower part; hand techniques are bind with each other so tight and it has its way to in & out, the move might flourish but not mess which can truly express the power of NanQuan. South Preying Mantis is perceived as bold and tough. The use of force has to co-ordinate well with the breath inhale, otherwise it will cause “internal injury”. The kung fu helps develop a strong body and is good at attack and defense. It emphases the importance of technical foundation and is firm but not stiff, and soft but not weak. Through bridge arm, two people can practice: Chy Sau、 Doy Chong、Mok Kok、Mok Sau、Pok Jeung、Gau Choi etc while one person can practice: steps、walk with the stand、 holding the stand、 drills、which develops concurrently the use of internal and external force.





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