Ancient History of the Martial Arts

Elements of Chinese Martial Arts originated more than six thousand years ago as the first cavemen learned simple blocking, and striking techniques to protect themselves.

The first documented form of Chinese Martial Arts, Shuai-Chiao (pronounced Swhy Jow), is variously known as The Mother of All Martial Arts and Classical Chinese Wrestling, is described in texts written by and about the legendary Yellow Emperor, Huang Ti, in the first half of the third Millennium BC. During the ensuing years, other forms of Chinese Martial Arts evolved. In 1600 BC a sub-art, Shaolin Chn'in-Na (Chin-Na) also known as Chen-Na, emerged. The hard syle of Chin-Na is called Yee Ch'uen, also known as Karate. It consists of kicking, punching, and open-hand techniques for striking vital points of the body with skill. The soft style of Chin-Na is called Chi Chi Shu. Examples of this style include Ju-Jitsu, Judo, and Aikido. Techniques in these arts consist of twisting, locking and breaking of joints, muscle splitting, submission holds, throws, and takedowns.

The purpose of intermingling the hard and the soft styles of Chin-Na is to stabilize your opponent's body for strikes or throws when necessary. The Chin-Na student must learn to attack and defend with skill using weapons as well as the empty hand. In the old days, Chinese Kung-Fu was divided into four main categories: i.e., empty fist, weapons, archery and Shuai Chiao. The founder of Kung-Fu was Confucius, who started Confucianism. In about 525 AD, a holy man named Bodhidharma left his monastery in Southern India to spread the Buddhist faith to China, later called Ch'an Buddhism. (Ch'an is the Chinese translation for the Sanskrit word "Dhyana" meaning yogic concentration, also know as Zen.) Chin-Na was introduced in the 9th Century to Japan and to Okinawa in the 12th Century. In 1084 Taijitsu (Body Art) was taught and in 1200 AD Daito Ryu Aiki Ju-Jitsu. All were forerunners of Ju-Jutsu (which became the official name in 1534).

"All the Martial Arts information obtained in this reference came from the Martial Arts Dictionary and the Martial Arts Encyclopedia as well as other sources and can be produced upon request from interested parties. Signed by Kyoshi Sensei Edward E. Wilkes, Doshu of the Goshin Budokan U.S.A. and Dojocho Shubukan Martial Arts Center of Fabens, Texas."