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SOUTHERN KUNG FU FIVE FAMILY FIST HISTORY

                                                                   Grand Master Ark Yeuy Wong





Originally, there were five principle Southern kung fu systems. They were designated by the word gar following the founder's name. Gar means family and in this case stands for gung fu families.


The five family systems were originated strictly as fighting arts, used to battle the Ching dynasty rulers. Unlike Northern systems, which were older and had evolved during peaceful times when students could study their martial arts for years before reaching higher levels, the masters of the Southern systems had to hurry their training and quickly teach their students how to fight. As a result, hard power was taught first, followed by internal training. Stances were wider and lower, and Southern footwork less active than Northern, relying more on the practitioner's strength for defence. The families were:                                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                 
                                                    HUNG-GAR      LAU GAR     CHOY GAR 


LI GAR    MOK GAR 






 

Grand Master Ark Yeuy Wong

Grand Master Ark Yeuy Wong performing on the street Five Family Five Animal Kung Fu

HUNG-GAR: Founded by Hung Hei Gung, it uses external strength and dynamic tension exercises and is excellent for developing muscles and strong low stances.

LAU GAR: Founded by Lau Soam Ngan, it is a middle length hand system, not often taught in present times.

CHOY GAR: No relation to Choy-li-fut, the system was founded by Choy Gau Yee and is a long –arm style.

LI GAR: Founded by Li Yao San (also one of Choy-li-fut's originators), this seldom-taught system features a strong medium-range fist.

MOK GAR: Founded by Mok Ching Giu, who was famous in Canton for his powerful kicks, this system places emphasis on short-hand techniques and strong kicks.


               Sifu Louis Diaz 

    Si-Gung Jamal Rashad El

With the exception of hung-gar, the Southern family styles are rarely seen today in their original forms. Most of the popular Southern systems, including choy-li-fut, wing chun and white crane, had their roots in the Shaolin temple martial system, or in other Northern styles. When escaping revolutionaries transplanted these arts to Southern China, they adopted many of the distinguishing characteristics of the native styles. The combination of Northern and Southern elements make these kung fu systems particularly versatile and effective self-defence systems.